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Master of Philosophy or M.Phil. in English Literature is a research based course which introduces an aspirant to nuances of research methodologies and intricacies in the field of English literature. This course is pursued by people desirous of a career as an academician.

The minimum eligibility for entry into the course is an MA degree in English Literature or allied disciplines. The admission to this program is mostly through an entrance examination. The average tuition fee for M.Phil. English Literature ranges from 5,000 INR to 50,000 INR. Ideally, the program is of two years duration.

M.Phil. in English Literature opens up career possibilities in the academic and research fields related to English Literature. Students who complete M.Phil. in English Literature often move on to complete their PhD in English Literature and are employed in the academia of the country. Average starting salary after M.Phil. in English Literature ranges from 20,000 INR to 30,000 INR per month.

What is M.Phil. in English Literature?

Master of Philosophy in English Literature, is a research degree. The course is about focused study of branches of literature and helps in developing a critical view of works of literature. This course also introduces to research methodologies and with rigorous training in the same prepares a candidate for a career in research and academics. This course helps to develop a solid foundation about works, authors and genres of English literature and helps develop an insight about themes, metaphors, historical, social and religious context, and rhetorical devices in a work of literature.

Who should opt for M.Phil. in English Literature?

Students with an aptitude for English Literature and an keen desire to go through different works of literature and analyze them through different critical perspectives should opt for an M.Phil. in English Literature. This course is about applying the knowledge of Literary Criticism theories and techniques learned in Masters to works of literature. The course requires a student to devote a lot of time in research and reading critical material. Hence, somebody with perseverance and patience can flourish in the course. Also the course requires a student to have an advanced level understanding of literary works and theories so someone with a prior knowledge of aspects of literature is perfect for the course.

Top Colleges for M.Phil. (English Literature)

  • M.Phil. (English Literature) in Tamil Nadu
  • M.Phil. (English Literature) in Rajasthan
  • M.Phil/Ph.D in Arts in Delhi-NCR
  • M.Phil/Ph.D in Arts in Maharashtra
  • M.Phil/Ph.D in Arts in Chennai
  • M.Phil/Ph.D in Arts in Uttar Pradesh


An M.Phil. in English Literature at the likes of University of Delhi and Jamia Millia Islamia University is of two years duration with a total of 4 semesters. However, at Lovely Professional University, this course is of one and a half years duration and at Kurukshetra University and Amity University the course is of one year duration.

Academic Options after M.Phil. in English Literature

A natural course of action after M.Phil. in English Literature is to apply for a PhD from one of reputed institutes in India. PhD is a research degree for which M.Phil. serves as a launch pad.

Where to study?

Many Universities in India offering Arts and Humanities courses, offer M.Phil. program in English Literature. Some of the top institutes for an M.Phil. in English Literature are listed below:

Name of the Institutes


Christ University


Jadavpur University


University of Delhi

New Delhi

Jamia Millia Islamia University

New Delhi

Banaras Hindu University


University of Hyderabad


University of Madras


University of Calcutta


Jawaharlal Nehru University

New Delhi

Jaipur National University


Atal Bihari Vajpayee Hindi Vishwavidyalaya


Bharathiar University


Banasthali University


Indian School of Mines University


Eligibility Of the M.Phil. (English Literature)

Minimum required eligibility for admission to M.Phil. in English Literature is an MA degree in English or its allied disciplines. Certain colleges may give preference to students with an MA in English Literature while preparing their shortlist.

How to Get Admission in M.Phil. (English Literature)

Admission to M. Phil. in English Literature is through an entrance examination. The application forms for M.Phil. courses are generally available in the month of May. Jawaharlal Nehru University is an exception as it releases application forms in the month of February. University of Hyderabad begins admission process in the month of December. Many universities follow the fall and winter cycle of admission in the program.

The examination is mostly subjective in nature and is designed to assess a candidate’s analytical and critical thinking abilities. The test paper ideally contains three to five questions out of which a student has to attempt 2 to 3 questions depending upon the directive of the university. Maximum marks varies from 70 to 100.

The questions are asked from topics related to literary criticism and literary analysis of passages, poems, or a set of work. The purpose of these questions is to test a candidate’s aptitude in doing research and their prior knowledge in the field of literature. It also tests their ability to apply literary theory and criticism techniques to literary works.

To qualify in the entrance test, an aspiring candidate ought to have an in-depth knowledge of literary works, authors, genres, literary periods, and historical movements in literature. Also a candidate needs to have applicable knowledge of literary theories. A student must go through works of prominent literary figures of all eras and have some prior experience of analyzing their works.

Selection Process

Selection for admission to M.Phil. In English Literature involves a two-step process. First students have to appear for an entrance test. After entrance, a select few students are called for a personal interview. In the personal interview, students are grilled on their knowledge of contemporary issues in Literature, themes in Literature, and current research in literature.

The final list is prepared on the basis of marks scored in entrance test, personal interview and percentage in qualifying examination. Students who have published research papers prior to joining M.Phil. English Literature are given some preference while preparing the merit list. 

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