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phd for working professionals

Updated at : January 20, 2024

PhD for Working Professionals

PhD for working professionals is offered in India by some of the top-notch institutions. However, the full-time commitment to the program restricts many professionals from adding the “Dr” title to their names. The online doctorate courses offered by WES-recognized international institutions will help you fulfill your professional desires in a hybrid learning mode. You can investigate the same employment opportunities as provided following a full-time PhD course in the worldwide market with this flexible doctorate.

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No. of Universities


Course Duration

3 - 5 Years


Graduation with 5+ years of work experience

Learning Mode


EMI Facility


PhD for Working Professionals Program Overview

After serving your work domain you can easily gain expertise but getting recognition is something that only comes with the appropriate qualification or degree. PhD is one such program that is pursued by many working professionals or even scholars to get their knowledge recognized in the industry. 

PhD for working professionals is a doctorate program that is designed specifically for working executives considering their needs. Numerous institutions in India and abroad offer this program in full-time mode but the restrictions to time commitments are failing to fulfill the purpose. 

PhD vs doctorate courses for working professionals

Online doctorate courses are alternatives to these full-time Ph.D. courses that fit perfectly well into the busy life schedule of working professionals. In India, online doctoral courses are not approved by UGC and thus are not offered by Indian Institutions. However, recognized foreign universities offer these programs in a hybrid learning mode that does not require regular college visits. Online classes and recorded lectures help you clear your doubts during the course. Moreover, the Software Citation Tools that you learn in the short duration of 3 years help you advance your technical knowledge at your workspace. 

These online doctorate courses are offered in various domains like Business Administration, Law, Science and Technology, and so on. Thus, the name of your doctoral program may sometimes vary based on the field you are interested in. E.g., the degree, Doctor of Business Administration is known as DBA at several prestigious institutions. 

Key Highlights of PhD for Working Professionals In India

  • Enroll in an online doctorate program a reputable international university provides to get the title of "Dr."
  • To advance your profession, conduct in-depth, realistically focused research on the subjects using the most recent curriculum for PhD courses.
  • Choose from a range of options for your selected domain and area of expertise.
  • Determine which subjects require additional investigation and gather pertinent data to improve problem-solving techniques in the workplace. 
  • In just 36 months, you can finish the quickest route to the highest degree in your field by using an online learning platform.
  • Research done in this course uncovers new facets of the topic that will be beneficial to both industries and people's lives.
  • Opt to participate in the "campus immersion" workshop of online doctoral programs to visit your college campus.
  • Make use of the university's learning management system (LMS) interface to have access to 24/7 digital study resources for academic assistance.
  • After completing this flexible course from a reputable international university, you will be recognized in the industry on a global basis.
  • Enroll in a globally recognized online doctorate course to avail yourself of the benefits from overseas employment prospects while serving the Indian industry.
  • Explore the after-benefits of this hybrid doctoral course as you would get after a full-time PhD.

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PhD for Working Professionals Course Subjects/Syllabus

The syllabus for the alternative courses of PhD for working professionals, i.e., online doctorate courses offered by foreign universities consists of two basic elements, foundation and specialization portions. The specific topics covered in the specialization category are based on the major you choose. However, the foundation category addresses the themes of Research Methodology involving Concept Paper and Literature Review, Research Proposal, and finally Dissertation/Thesis. 

Specializations Offered in the Doctorate Programs:

Numerous majors are available in online doctorate courses, a few of them belonging to business and law fields are listed here: 

Doctor of Business Administration (DBA)

  • DBA in Human Resource
  • DBA in Emerging Technology
  • DBA in Supply Chain
  • DBA in Generative AI

Doctor of Law 

  • Doctor of Juridical Science (SJD)

PhD for Working Professionals Eligibility & Duration

Complete an online doctoral degree in your preferred domain in just 3 years without taking any break from your career. This span involves a flexible study schedule with a commitment of a few hours per week as per your routine. A master’s degree in the related field is the basic academic qualification needed for these programs. However, many universities even entertain graduates with 5+ years of work experience in the related field. 

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Program Fees for PhD for Working Professionals

Starting at ₹ 6,776/month

Program Fee: ₹60,000 - ₹2,50,000

Low Cost EMI Available


The fee package for online doctoral courses from foreign universities is generally on the higher end. Most universities have a starting value of 8,00,000 INR or $10,000 for this program. However, with the choice of major and university, this figure can go higher. Scholarships and EMI options, offered by institutions, make these highly accessible programs affordable for all. 

PhD for Working Professionals Admission Procedure

Being a feasible course for working professionals, online doctorate courses have quite a simple admission process. To begin with, you need to choose the domain and specialization of your doctoral course from the chosen foreign university’s program list. After that, registration and login would take you to the admission form. Fill it with your personal, professional, and academic information and attach mandatory docs (scanned copies) along with it. 

After the submission of the form, you need to wait for the university's admissions committee to contact you. If their decision is in your favor, you will receive your offer letter with the booking amount mentioned on it. Pay this amount to reserve your admission to the next batch of the course. 

NOTE: At some universities, you might need to appear for a personal interview as part of the selection process. 

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Growth of Online Education in India

  • Online education in India is set to grow at a CAGR of 19.9% by 2030.
  • Skill development and employment are the major driving forces for this growth.
  • Higher education is gaining popularity in this online medium.
  • Financially affordability is a significant contributor to this boom.
  • The increased adoption of technologies, i.e., the Internet and smartphones, has increased accessibility significantly.
  • The advantage of flexibility in terms of time and location is the key highlight.
Growth of Online Education in India

Education Loan/EMI Facilities for PhD for Working Professionals

EMI plans in the education industry are a great way of executing the idea of “Education for All.” These facilities make online programs including short-term certifications to doctorate-level courses affordable for all. In addition to these benefits, the option of education loans gives you the freedom to study at any stage of your career without worrying about your finances. 


Is PhD for Working Professionals Worth it?

Ph.D. is not only a degree but it is a reflection of the knowledge that you hold in a particular field. Acquiring a PhD has always been a full-time commitment in India but with online doctorate courses offered by international universities, these high-qualifying courses have been accessible to all aspirants. 

With these courses, you can easily fulfill your dream of adding the title of “Dr” to your name. These courses even help you learn the new advancements in your work field by making you learn the functionality of new software and tools. Moreover, these online programs completed from WES-recognized international universities get you global recognition. Furthermore, the short duration and affordable fee package add to the feasibility of your doctoral course.

As a working professional, you already understand the importance of a degree besides having years of experience. Thus, a doctorate program opens your doors to promotions to the CXO designation in your current or other firm. Above all, completing it from an international university strengthens your professional networking which improves your chances of settling abroad by multiple folds. 

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Job Opportunity after PhD for Working Professionals

A PhD is not just an academic qualification, it is the ticket to your dream career that you have dreamed of all your life! An online doctorate course helps you achieve that dream in a shorter span by equipping you with the technical aspects of your field. After completing the course, you can get promoted to senior positions, serve as a guest lecturer in institutions, or start your business, based on your interests.

The following list has some titles that you can secure in the corporate world after a doctoral course: 

Vice President/Chancellor

Executive VP





Research Analyst

Executive Administrator

Strategic Planner

Research Associate

Top Recruiters for PhD for Working Professionals

PhD courses demonstrate your superior subject-matter expertise. In addition to helping you advance professionally, the "Doctor" title attached to your name highly attracts prestigious companies, who recognize your expertise in granting it. Doctorate holders are being employed by all industry sectors as members of their management teams since they offer an inventive strategy for success. 

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Let's clear up some doubts about PhD for Working Professionals

In India, PhD courses are offered in only full-time/regular mode. Job and study only get along in online courses and the online PhD is not approved by UGC to be offered by Indian Institutions. 

Yes, in the online doctorate course from an international institution, you will be provided with unlimited access to the LMS portal which contains all the digited academic resources related to your course. In addition to that, live sessions and recorded lectures are also there. 

Executives looking for a career transition into the C-suite and senior managers willing to become experts in their field should opt for an online doctorate course. 

Except for the duration, mode of delivery, and nature of study, everything is similar between a PhD and a doctorate course. An online doctorate course is based on industry-focused research and is completed in 3 years whereas PhD is a full-time, 4-7 years long theoretical research-based program. 

An online doctorate program completed from a WES-recognized foreign institution allows you to add the prefix “Dr.” to your name. 

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