With its slighter resemblance to a PhD, a Master of Philosophy (MPhil) is purely considered as a research degree. Every domain of study is full of all-encompassing theoretical and practical knowledge which is not everyone’s cup of tea but is enticing to those who find themselves inclined towards it. After completing a postgraduate degree, MPhil can serve as a suitable preparatory stone to a doctoral degree as it will help you polish your research skills along with giving you a glimpse into a research-extensive degree. This blog aims to provide you with the key essentials of what a Master of Philosophy entails, specialisations offered, top universities you can pursue it from as well as the career scope it offers.
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Understanding Master of Philosophy (MPhil)
A Master of Philosophy as a degree constitutes of a taught aspect along with a research part which also incorporates a thesis that requires to be carried out under the supervision of a scholar. It is usually offered as a 1-2 year degree in which, at times, a PhD program is also incorporated to be pursued after completing MPhil. While deciding upon this advanced master’s program, many find it confusing to see the actual difference between an MPhil and PhD. Firstly, a Master of Philosophy works as a training programme for a Doctorate of Philosophy as the nature of the research dissertation differs from one degree to another as per their scope and degree of originality which is quite limited in MPhil. On the other hand, many academic institutions also provide the option for students to exit their PhD program earlier with an MPhil which gets superseded by the doctorate.
Candidates who wish to enrol in an MPhil programme must be passionate about the field they choose. In addition, applicants who are considering pursuing an MPhil programme must be very devoted and hardworking. The following are some essential abilities that a candidate should have when pursuing an MPhil programme:
- Problem Solving Abilities
- Using research tools
- Giving due credit
- Communication skills
- Writing Skills
- Reading Skills
- Leadership Skills
- Good at Research
- Analytical Skills
- Keen Observer
When to do an MPhil Course?
Candidates can start their MPhil degree programme after earning their master’s degree. Candidates who desire to pursue a PhD but first want to get research experience should start with the MPhil programme. To finish the second-year curriculum of the MPhil degree programme, which requires candidates to concentrate on the dissertation project and the creation of a thesis, candidates must allow adequate time to study and do research.
Who Should do MPhil?
Candidates may enrol in the MPhil degree programme if they are unable to dedicate the 4-5 years necessary for the extensive research required by PhD programmes. An MPhil degree could be beneficial and improve the value of a candidate’s CV if they are unable to complete the PhD programme due to unforeseen circumstances. Candidates should enrol in the MPhil course programme if they want to work in government or business research and development programmes.
Candidates who are interested in a career in research in a range of academic fields join the MPhil programme. Candidates who wish to become teachers and aid in the process of constructing the country are enticed to MPhil programmes. The MPhil degree programme is a prerequisite for the Doctorate programme and is chosen by candidates who intend to eventually enrol in a PhD programme.
Why Choose MPhil?
- A preparatory course for the PhD
- Job Safety
- High Pay and Other Benefits
- Opportunities for Entrepreneurship
- Wide number of specialisations
- Short in duration
Don’t let the name mislead you. Contrary to appearances, MPhil is not a degree in philosophy. Here, the term “philosophy” is used much more broadly to refer to academic research. It is closely related to a PhD and is offered in many specializations such as History, Education, English, Mathematics, Commerce, Biology etc.
Specialisations Offered in Master of Philosophy
Master of Philosophy can be studied in an array of domains and streams of study ranging from Commerce, Arts and Humanities to Science and Technology. Though many think that as a research-oriented program, it can only be pursued in theoretical disciplines but an MPhil can also be opted for in technical specialisations such as IT, Biotechnology amongst others. Take a look at the following list of specialisations which are some of the many ones in which you can study this degree.
- Physical Education
- Information Technology
- Marine Biotechnology
- Public Policy
- Language Studies
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As the quintessential academic qualifications, the applicant for an MPhil program needs to have completed their bachelor’s and a master’s degree from a recognised institution and in the subject related to the one they are opting for. However, international institutions also offer MPhil as a master’s program rather than a higher postgraduate degree. Also, experience in the research domain is preferable by many universities while aspirants might also be asked to provide a research proposal. For those planning to acquire this degree abroad are also required to qualify IELTS or TOEFL and to submit an SOP as well as LORs.[optin-monster-shortcode id=”xf2mlnjiouddzrshykdb”]
Master of Philosophy (MPhil): Top Universities
Since MPhil is available in an array of fields, there are varied academic institutions across the globe that offer specialised programs that one can choose from. To help you further in your research, we have listed down some of the major universities providing Master of Philosophy in a plethora of disciplines and areas of study:
- The University of Edinburgh
- The University of Waikato
- University of Pretoria
- The University of Hong Kong
- Stellenbosch University
- United International College
- University of Chester
- Royal Holloway University of London
- Royal Conservatoire of Scotland
- Glasgow Caledonian University
- Royal College of Art
Studying a Master of Philosophy in any sub-field, you can discover a plethora of opportunities in both the public and private sector. Though many aspirants pursue M.Phil to enter the academic arena or to ready themselves for a doctorate degree, it has a multitude of benefits that you can avail. Mainly, the most prominent arena you can establish yourself in with an MPhil is that of a career in research. Also, depending upon the field you have completed this degree in, the prospects might vary. Here is a list of employment areas that you can choose from with an MPhil degree:
- Research and Development Institutions
- Academic Institutions
- Publishing Houses
- Magazines and Newspapers
- Policy Analysis
- Public Administration
- Social Work
Check Out: Research Institutes in India
Thus, if you are passionate about delving deeper into the research domain in your field of interest, then you must consider opting for a master of philosophy. To extract the best benefits out of this degree, you should strive to attain overseas education in the same. Take the help of the AI-based tool at Leverage Edu to browse through an array of MPhil programs available in different specialisations and find the best combination of a course and university that fits your interests and aspirations.