PhD in Chemistry

7 minute read
PhD in Chemistry

If you are keen to explore the world of science that is central to the connection between natural sciences and physics, engage in extensive research and find out new avenues, then, PhD in Chemistry might suit your career aspirations. Having to engage in independent studies, broadening your skill base and engaging in experiments in the laboratory for long periods of time, in a PhD curriculum, you would study different principles of Thermodynamics, advanced levels of Organic and Inorganic Chemistry, Mathematics, etc. With the knowledge of these core areas of the subject, you would understand the application of these fundamental principles to real-life practical processes. Let us take a look at the scope of pursuing a PhD in Chemistry.

CourseDoctor of Philosophy in Chemistry
Duration3 – 6 years
Eligibility CriteriaMasters Degree
Admission ProcessEntrance Test
Top Entrance ExamsUGC – NET, GATE, CUCET
Average FeesINR 80k – 3 lakhs
Average SalaryINR 15 lakhs – 20 lakhs 
Job OptionsStaff Scientist, Chemistry Professor, etc

About PhD in Chemistry 

PhD in Chemistry is a doctoral degree in one of the branches of Science that span over a period of 3-6 years. It is a detailed academic study and research and completes with the submission of an academic thesis on the subject that you engaged in research with. Moreover, these days there are a large number of innovative research projects that have been adopted such as the interface of Chemistry with Biology and Medicinal Sciences, Sustainable Energy, and Catalysis, amongst many others.

Moreover, the popular subjects studied over the course of your program include Computational and Theoretical Chemistry, Biochemistry and Organic Synthesis, Magnetic Resonance and Structural Chemistry, Biochemistry, Bioinformatics, Nanoscience, Biotechnology, Molecular biology, Microbiology, Genetics, Gene Expression, etc.

Eligibility Criteria 

A PhD in Chemistry requires one to be committed to research and development and sometimes spend days at a stretch in the laboratory. Being a rigorous curriculum taught over a period of 3-6 years, a doctorate degree involves fierce training and education. Apart from these, there are a few things that one needs to pay heed to while seeking admission to this course. Some of these are: 

  • Senior Secondary Certificate or its equivalent from a recognised education board. 
  • A bachelor’s degree in Chemistry/Biochemistry or a related field of your specialization from an accredited institution.
  • A master’s degree like MSc Chemistry, MSc Biochemistry from a recognised university.
  • English Language Proficiency Test: IELTS, TOEFL or PTE score
  • Proven evidence of work experience, if needed.

PhD in Chemistry: Admission Process

To get admitted into any top universities like IIsc Banglore, IIT Kharagpur, IIT Bombay, etc offering a Ph.D. chemistry, students need to sit for entrance exams. The admission process continues with a personal interview, and if they score well, they can also get a scholarship. Given below are the basic steps:

Step 1: Application – To get admission to any college for Ph.D. in Chemistry, students first have to fill out the form for the course through either online or offline mode. 

Step 2: Entrance Exams – If students are aiming to get to admission in top universities, the entrance exams are extremely necessary. 

Step 3: Results – Keep a thorough check on the exam results. After the results have been declared, the admission process will continue. 

Step 4: Interview and Enrollment – After qualifying for the exam, the university will take an interview either online or offline by calling the students to the university campus.

PhD in Chemistry Top Colleges in India 2022

The table is given below listed the top-ranked colleges for Ph.D. in Chemistry in India with their NIRF rankings: 

NIRF RanksCollegeEntrance ExamAverage Fees (INR)Average Salary
1Indian Institute of Science, BangaloreJAM/JEET scores35,20010 LPA
4Indian Institute of Technology, BombayGATE/UATE/UGC-NET score, written test, and personal interview73,00020.34 LPA
5Indian Institute of Technology, KharagpurWritten test followed by an interview28,90030 LPA
6Indian Institute of Technology, KanpurEntrance Based64,05022 LPA 
8Indian Institute of Technology, RoorkeeGATE/GPAT/UGC-NET/JRF scores, and interview28,50013.16 LPA

PhD in Chemistry: Entrance Exams

Some universities have their own exams like Lovely Professional Universities has LPUNEST and the main national level exams conducted for this course are the UGC – NET, and GATE. There is also CUCET which is the common entrance for central universities.

PhD in Chemistry: Entrance Exams Syllabus

The syllabus of the entrance exam of this course depends upon three main topics: 

Inorganic ChemistryPhysical ChemistryOrganic Chemistry
Main Group Elements & their Compounds: Allotropy, Synthesis, Structure and Bonding, Industrial importance of the compounds. Approximate methods of
quantum mechanics: Chemical applications of group theory; symmetry elements; point groups; character tables; selection rules. 
Asymmetric synthesis: Pericyclic reactions – electrocyclization, cycloaddition, sigmatropic rearrangements, and other related concerted reactions. Principles and applications of photochemical reactions in organic chemistry. Structure determination of organic compounds by IR, UV-Vis, 1H & 13C NMR, and Mass spectroscopic techniques.
Transition Elements and Coordination Compounds: Structure, bonding theories, spectral & magnetic properties, reaction mechanisms. Statistical thermodynamics: Nernst equation, redox systems, electrochemical cells; collision and transition state theories of rate constants; unimolecular reactions; enzyme kinetics; salt effects; homogeneous catalysis; photochemical reactions.Principles of stereochemistry: Organic reaction mechanisms involving addition, elimination, and substitution reactions with electrophilic, nucleophilic, or radical species. Determination of reaction pathways. Common named reactions and rearrangements – applications in organic synthesis. 
Inner transition elements: Spectral and magnetic properties, redox chemistry, analytical applications. Basic principles of quantum mechanics: Postulates; operator algebra; exactly-solvable systems: particle-in-a-box, harmonic oscillator and the hydrogen atom, including shapes of atomic orbitals; tunneling.Principles of stereochemistry: Organic reaction mechanisms involving addition, elimination, and substitution reactions with electrophilic, nucleophilic, or radical species. Determination of reaction pathways. Common named reactions and rearrangements – applications in organic synthesis. 
Characterization of inorganic compounds by IR, Raman, NMR, EPR, Mossbauer, UV-vis, NQR, MS, electron spectroscopy, and microscopic techniques.Molecular spectroscopy: Rotational and vibrational spectra of diatomic molecules; electronic spectra; IR and Raman activitiesOrganic transformations and reagents: Functional group interconversion including oxidations and reductions; common catalysts and reagents (organic, inorganic, organometallic, and enzymatic).
Bioinorganic chemistry: Photosystems, porphyrins, metalloenzymes, oxygen transport, electron-transfer reactions; nitrogen fixation, metal complexes in medicine.Colloids and surfaces: Stability and properties of colloids; isotherms and surface area; heterogeneous catalysis.Concepts in organic synthesis: Retrosynthesis, disconnection, synthons. 
Organometallic compounds: Synthesis, bonding and structure, and reactivity.Chemical thermodynamics: Laws, state and path functions and their applications; thermodynamic description of various types of processes; elementary description of phase transitions; phase equilibria and phase rule; thermodynamics of ideal and non-ideal gases, and solutions.

Ph.D. in Chemistry: Top Universities

Enlisted are the best universities to pursue a Ph.D. in Chemistry with their corresponding areas of specialization: 

Universidade in Chemical Science & Technology, SpainPh.D. in Chemical Science & Technology
Hong Kong University of Science & TechnologyPh.D. in Nano Science & Technology
Rochester Institute of TechnologyPh.D. in Microsystems Engineering
Brno University of TechnologyPh.D. in Chemistry and Technology of Foodstuffs
University of Pardubice, Czech RepublicPh.D. in Chemistry & Technology of Inorganic Materials
UAE UniversityPh.D. in Chemistry
The University of Texas at Dallas, USAUSA
Charles University Faculty of Science, PraguePh.D. in Physical Chemistry

Top Universities for PhD in Chemistry 

Access to the top of the range research equipment and facilities like X-ray diffractometers, scanning tunnelling microscopes, electron microscopes, mass spectrometers, and high-field nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectrometers, the best universities around the world have a lot to offer. Which is why we have curated a list of renowned universities around the world taking into consideration the top 5 countries to study Chemistry that might be perfect for you.

Job Prospects & Salary

Read on to find out the below-mentioned job options with the respective average salaries after pursuing a Ph.D. in Chemistry: 

  • Research Scientist – Ranges around INR 8.7 lakhs
  • Principal Scientist – Ranges around INR 20 lakhs
  • Assistant General Manager – Ranges around INR 20 lakhs
  • Business Consultant – Ranges around INR 30 lakhs
  • High School Principal – Ranges around INR 4.7 lakhs

Career Prospects 

Progressing into the branch of Chemistry would allow you to explore multifarious opportunities that would refine your skills and make a good living. Working with different chemical research centres, industries such as plastic and polymer factories, forensic labs, food packaging and processing firms along with the beverage and liquor industries hire chemists at a large scale. You may also make a career in Medicinal Chemistry and work towards finding new cures and medical testing and manufacturing. You can consider the following profiles after pursuing a PhD in Chemistry:

  • Scientist 
  • Medical Technologist 
  • Research Instructor 
  • Professor 
  • Cytologist
  • Material Science
  • Pharma Assistant
  • Biochemist
  • Agricultural Chemist
  • Clinical Research Specialist
  • Medical Technologist
  • Radiologist
  • Toxicologist 
  • Food and Flavor Chemist
  • Water Quality Chemist
  • Production Chemist
  • Product Officer
  • Research & Development Manager
  • Scientific Data Entry Specialist
  • Safety Health and Environment Specialist
  • Quality Controller


How many years does it take to complete a Ph.D. in Chemistry in India?

If you are doing this course from a reputed institute, Ph.D. can usually take up to 6 years to complete or even less than that, i.e, 3 years. 

Are scholarships offered for a Ph.D. in Chemistry in India?

Overall consideration takes place like, admission process, student’s score in the entrance exams, and the universities offering scholarships based on the student’s merit. 

Which IIT is best for Ph.D. in Chemistry?

There is no best in this case but yes IIT Guwahati has one of the best chemistry departments among the IITs. It has all the facilities and there are around 42 professors so you get many options to do research under them.

With a PhD in Chemistry, you can get a postdoctoral position where you continue to research. Many individuals decide that academia is not for them and use their teaching, financial sector, or trading skills. If you have any inhibitions in finding a path to your career aspirations, Leverage Edu can guide you towards it and boost your career. 

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    1. Hi Isaboke! If you want to study PhD in Computational and Theoretical Chemistry in UK, Canada or USA then please connect with our experts on 1800 572 000!

    1. Hi Prabhat,
      Yes sure, you can do PhD in any discipline that excites you provided your portfolio and eligibility criteria matches for that particular discipline. You can get in touch with our counsellors at 1800572000 and they will help you out to kickstart your PhD journey in 20222!

    1. Hi Isaboke! If you want to study PhD in Computational and Theoretical Chemistry in UK, Canada or USA then please connect with our experts on 1800 572 000!