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Difference between PhD programs in the US and UK

This article throws light on PhD in the USA or the UK. Read through and pick what you think is best for you!

| 03 Oct 2012 | Updated on 23 Jan 2015 | 2.3K Views

To qualify for a PhD program in the US, students must have a relevant bachelor’s degree, good academic scores, coursework related to the topic and good GRE and GMAT scores.


Got your mind set on doing a PhD but not sure whether to head to the UK or the USA? 
Students flock to the UK every year and a large number opt for UK’s PhD programmes. Unlike in the US, the UK PhDs are not necessarily the highest academic degree; there are higher degrees such as a DSc (Doctor of Science) or a DLitt (Doctor of Letters) programme. 
PhD programmes in the UK generally last for three years and require a thesis submission within a year of the end of the programme. Recently, there have been an increasing number of four-year PhD schemes inclusive of a few modules to be taught. 
International Ph.D. students from countries, from outside the EU must meet the  requirements as per the ATAS (Academic Technology Approval Scheme), inclusive of security clearance for certain programmes in medicine, mathematics, material science, natural science and engineering.  Students need to have completed a bachelor’s degree in second class honours and a relevant master’s degree. Students who are working as graduate research assistants can opt for part-time PhD programmes. 
Students can also plan ahead by choosing a master’s degree that would make them eligible for the kind of PhDs that they would like to pursue. In this case however there will only be a few numbers of grants that students can opt for. Depending on the student’s performance, they are then transferred to their selected PhD programme. After this, depending on performance factors, they will be transferred to a Ph.D.
For a PhD programme in the USA, the student must take up comprehensive exams to have their depth of knowledge in the area of research measured. The original thesis of a PhD programme in the US generally lasts for two to four years, after which an expert committee will judge the work of the student.  Students doing their PhD programme in the USA generally are given a time range of up to ten years to complete, in many universities. The programme in the USA, unlike the UK, does not have a rigid formal time frame and can be finished in the time frame decided by the student. On an average, students finish their doctorate programme within four to eight years. 
To qualify for a PhD programme in the USA, students must have a relevant bachelor’s degree, good academic scores, recommendation letters, coursework related to the topic, SOP (statement of purpose) and good GRE and GMAT scores. US Research1 universities that are involved in extensive research, generally take-in students with high performance in their GRE, top-notch grades throughout their time of study, and really intense letters of recommendation. Mostly students receive a tuition waiver and an annual stipend, though these rates vary widely depending on the university and the field of research. Students can gain employment as research assistants and teaching assistants while doing their PhD in the US as well. 
Students, prior to their enrolling in their chosen program, must produce a research proposal and show relevant work experience in their field if any. Your application will be given extra value with a few intense recommendation letters, at least two. 
Have a look at some of the PhD programmes that are listed with us across the US and the UK and pick what you think is best for you! 




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