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M.A. in Urdu is a 2-year postgraduate course in Urdu language and literature, the minimum eligibility for pursuance of which is the successful completion of graduation in any discipline, and from a recognized institute of higher education.

Urdu is heavily associated with the Muslim religion as there are more than 65 million speakers of Urdu worldwide. 52 million of these reside in India alone, with another 12 million Urdu speakers in Pakistan.


Contemporarily, Urdu is a language of relevance also because:

  • Among minority communities around the world, there are also significant Urdu speakers, in countries like UK, US, Saudi Arabia, Bangladesh, Indonesia.
  • In India, there are over 3000 publications that run in Urdu language, and over 400 daily newspapers are published in India in the Urdu language.
  • Urdu poetry is famous internationally and has been prized not only within the society of Urdu speakers, but also by many other cultures and international frontiers.
  • Widely recited and amalgamation of many forms, Urdu poetry has a rich and varied library of poems and prose.
  • There are many religious texts and scripts in Urdu and holds the largest collection of Islamic literature besides Arabic.

The course is offered at major Indian universities, such as:

  • Bangalore University
  • Jamia Millia Islamia University
  • Jammu University.

Admission to the course is typically offered on the basis of merit obtained in the last qualifying examination, and often, on a performance in a preceding interview/ relevant entrance test, varying across universities.

The average course fee charge in India ranges between INR 2,000 – 8000 for the total duration.

The average annual salary offered to successful graduates of the course ranges between INR 2 and 5 lacs per annum.

Top Colleges for Master of Arts [MA] (Urdu)

  • Master of Arts [MA] (Urdu) in Uttar Pradesh
  • Master of Arts [MA] (Urdu) in Maharashtra
  • Master of Arts [MA] (Urdu) in Rajasthan
  • MA in Delhi-NCR
  • MA in Maharashtra
  • MA in Chennai

M.A. in Urdu: Course Highlights

Listed below are some of the major highlights of the course.

Course LevelPostgraduate
Duration2 years
Examination TypeSemester System
EligibilityGraduation from a recognized university
Admission ProcessMerit-based/ based on performance in entrance exam.
Course FeeINR 2,000 - 8,000
Average Starting SalaryINR 2-5 lacs
Top Recruiting Organizations'BBC Urdu, Etv Urdu, Schools, Colleges, Newspapers, magazines, etc.
Top Recruiting Areas'Journalism, Academia, Translating and Interpreting, and such.
Top Job ProfilesMultimedia Reporter, Urdu Translator and Interpreter, Urdu Teacher, Urdu Linguist, Urdu Writer, among others.

M.A. in Urdu: What is it About?

The course covers areas regarding Urdu literature, such as its society, poetry, prose, drama, novels, grammar, and such intricacies. During the course, emphasis is laid on an advanced analysis and examination of the Urdu language and literature. The development of the language through the phases of history and time period is broadly covered. Such postgraduates are employed gainfully in Urdu speaking business communities.

Urdu language directly descends from the Hindustani language and was used originally in Delhi. The Mughal Empire lasted from 1526 to 1858, during which many languages originated for trade and travel purposes. It was during this time that Urdu picked up many of its traits. With a high level of Persian and Arabic trade happening in India, Urdu was caught up by both parties.

Urdu also grew in importance as part of the Islamic religion. The Urdu language today is relatively similar to the Hindi language, as they share the same language family of Indo-European. These languages are understood to be separate forms of a same language, the main difference being the alphabet and written scripts.

The Urdu language acquires significance in light of the following factors:

  • It is the national language of the country of Pakistan.
  • It is also one of the 22 official languages of India.
  • While it is spoken by a number of minority groups in many of the States of India, Urdu has major predominance across Andhra Pradesh, Jharkhand, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, where it has the official language status.

M.A. in Urdu: Who should opt?

Ideal candidates for the course would possess the following:

  • Proficiency in the language, written and spoken.
  • Communication skills.
  • Critical, creative thinking.
  • Inquisitiveness about the culture behind the language.
  • Interpersonal skills.
  • Ability to integrate and apply linguistic knowledge.
  • Observational and investigative skills.
  • Understanding of linguistic relationships, interactions, and patterns.

Top Institutes offering M.A. in Urdu

Listed below are some of the top institutes offering the course in the country with the corresponding locations and fees charged by each.

Name of InstituteCityAverage Fees per annum in INR
Bangalore UniversityBangalore5,500
University of RajasthanJaipur3,250
Jammu UniversityJammu2,500
Jamia Millia Islamia UniversityNew Delhi7,000
Dr. B R Ambedkar Open UniversityHyderabad36,000
Rashtrasant Tukadoji Maharaj Nagpur UniversityNagpur6,000
University of MysoreMysore35,000
Nalanda Open UniversityPatna3,600
Maulana Azad National Urdu UniversityHyderabad14,000
Jodhpur National UniversityJodhpur16,000
Barkatullah UniversityBhopal2,000
Government Kamla Raja Girls Post Graduate CollegeGwalior2,150
Osmania University College for WomenHyderabad2,250
Poona College of Arts, Science and CommercePune8,317
Maulana Azad CollegeKolkata10,005

Eligibility for M.A. in Urdu

Listed below are the minimum criteria which candidates interested in pursuing the course are required to fulfil, in order to be eligible to apply for the course.

  • Graduation completed in any stream from a recognized institute.
  • A minimum aggregate score of 50% (45% for SC/ST/OBC candidates) at the level of graduation.
  • Proficiency in Urdu.

M.A. in Urdu: Admission Process

Most institutes offering the course admit students based on performance in a relevant entrance test, often followed by a round of personal interview, wherein their general aptitude for the course is tested. Admission process generally varies across colleges.

A few institutes also provide direct admission based on the candidate’s performance at the level of graduation. Some of the top entrance test- conducting instittes in the country for the course are:

  • University of Delhi
  • University of Hyderabad
  • Maulana Azad University, Hyderabad
  • Osmania University, Hyderabad
  • Jawaharlal Nehru University
  • Jamia Milia Islamia
  • Universiy of Pune
  • University of Mumbai
  • Choudhary Charan Singh University, Meerut.

M.A. in Urdu: Syllabus and Course Description

A semester-wise breakup of the course’s syllabus is tabulated below.

Semester 1Semester 2
History of Urdu Language & LiteratureModern Poetry
Elements of Urdu StructureModern Prose
Early Poetry (Nazm and Ghazal)Nonfiction
Early ProsePrint Media and Mass Media
Semester 3Semester 4
Classical poetry (Qasida, Marsiya & Masnavi)Comparative Study of Urdu and Punjabi Literature
Classical ProseLisaniyat
Principles of Literary CriticismEssay
-Print Media and Mass media

M.A. in Urdu: Career Prospects

Areas of employment for such postgraduates include teaching, print media, and film and television industries.

Such professionals are hired in capacities such as Article writer, Columnist, Journalist, Novelist, Story writer, Editor, Poet, Urdu translator, etc.

Such postgraduates possess innovativeness, ability to weave words accordingly to the context of a given article, ability to use contemporary style while writing, and ability to grab attention of the readers.

Urdu content writers and translators are also hired across online magazines, online papers, and online translating companies.

Some of the popular professional avenues open to such postgraduates are listed below with the corresponding salaries offered for the respective positions.

Job PositionJob DescriptionAverage Annual Salary in INR
Multimedia ReporterUrdu Multimedia Reporters are responsible for providing timely, expert, and authoritative coverage of news and current affairs pertaining to Urdu-predominant States and countries. They broadcast news on TV, radio, digital media, and mobile in Urdu and English languages. They provide meaningful reporting of political stories, current affairs, and other news topics that are engaging, lively, interesting and readily understandable.4-8 lacs
Urdu Translator and InterpreterUrdu Translators work mostly hands-off with audios or videos they translate. In contrast, Urdu Linguists work directly with people and engage in effective communication. Translators work primarily in one-way translation, like from Urdu to English or vice versa. Linguists translate back and forth, from English to Urdu and back again on a continuous basis. Urdu Translators and Interpreters are required across both private and public sectors. For non-government jobs, Urdu Linguists are commonly required as they work with locals to facilitate business with English-speaking organizations.3-4 lacs
Urdu TeacherUrdu Teachers are employed in schools from the first standard up to higher secondary. They are also appointed as professors in colleges and institutions. Urdu Teachers are appointed at Madrasas too, where they teach the Urdu language and Islamic history to young students. Urdu teachers encourage children to be independent, and teach them moral values of love, care, and respect through the curriculum of their course. They teach etiquette, manners, and behavior, and are looked upon with great respect in the society. They are also responsible for the academic, social and emotional upbringing of students in the classroom.1-3 lacs
Urdu Writer/ Editor

Content Writers create and compose creative/ context-specific written material for academic purposes creative reasons, or for publication. Content Editors are in charge of all parts of written content, including improvement, outline, creation, introduction, assessment and investigation, to give some examples. They utilize information and criticism from clients to help assess and improve the content of composed material.

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