Other links:

Other links:

Ph.D. Programme in History

The Department of History runs a PhD Programme under the guidelines of Ashoka University and the rules and regulations of the University Grants Commission (UGC). The Programme provides students with a robust training in source-based, research-driven, serious academic history-writing. All History PhD candidates are expected to devote their full time to the PhD Programme.

The Faculty in the Department of History combines a passion for innovative teaching with cutting-edge research. It has expertise in a wide range of specializations. It offers training in the archaeology of prehistoric and historical societies, with a focus on palaeodietary and palaeoclimatic reconstruction using advanced archaeological theory and scientific techniques. In the history of ancient and early medieval India, it has a thrust on archaeology, heritage, social history, political history, as well as the history of religions, texts, and ideas. In medieval and early modern history, it focuses on the history of states and empires, with an emphasis on the history of politics, political culture, warfare, military culture, and environment of India. In the history of modern India and the Indian Ocean, it specialises in environmental history, intellectual history, urban history, business history, spatial history, as well as the history of political violence, international development, science, medicine, nationalism, revolutionism, technology, knowing, and knowledge-production. It offers training in the history of late-imperial and modern China, with a thrust on the history of borderlands, spaces, science, statecraft, society, economy, textual and historiographical cultures, and transregional and global Sinophone histories. It also covers contemporary history and international history of modern South Asia, history of Tibet, China-India history, and global history. 

For further details about the research profiles and areas of interest of individual faculty members, explore this page. The Department of History also collaborates with the Centre for Interdisciplinary Archaeological Research and Ashoka Centre for China Studies regarding supervision and research. Applicants interested in relevant areas are encouraged to explore the webpages of these centres as well. 

Applicants Selected for Admissions in the History Ph.D. Programme, 2023

Serial No.Applicant NameApplication Number
1Ansh Sharma52-2023-10081
2Gunjan Malhotra52-2023-10067
3Kartika Menon52-2023-10092
4Khadiza Naufa Fatin52-2023-10138
5Thinley Wangchuk52-2023-10007
6Deepak Kumar Giri52-2023-10014

Waitlist (in sequential order):

Serial No.Applicant NameApplication Number
2Amit Ranjan52-2023-10151
3Alex Coutinho52-2023-10143

Highlights of Ashoka’s Ph.D. Programme in History

  • Liberal Arts: Centred on its stimulating Liberal Arts model of education, Ashoka University offers a unique environment for pursuing historical research in India. Its rich intellectual environment fosters inter-disciplinary thinking and research.
  • Library: Ashoka University has a world-class library. It has an expanding collection of books and journals of South Asian and global history. It provides access to a wide-range of digital resources, like JSTOR and South Asia Archive. The Department of History is deeply committed to expanding its library resources further for supporting serious research and pedagogy.
  • Seminars: For several years, the Department of History has been running multiple seminar series throughout the year. Both eminent and upcoming scholars of History and allied disciplines regularly present their latest research here. The main series – titled Ashoka History Seminar – runs through the year with active participation of our Ph.D. scholars.
  • Language Training: The History Ph.D. Programme offers tailor-made language training to cater to the research needs of its students. Currently Sanskrit and Persian are offered. Depending on the research requirements of incoming students, new options for languages will be introduced.
  • Teaching Opportunities: All History Ph.D. students will be able to gather some pedagogical experience as Teaching Assistants during their tenure at Ashoka. This will give them an opportunity to mentor Ashoka’s undergraduate students and thereby acquire teaching skills.
  • Stipend: All History Ph.D. students, who are not recipients of other financial aids already, will receive a monthly stipend of Rs. 38,000. In addition, they will be eligible for an annual contingency grant of Rs. 20,000 as support for their research. Students holding an MPhil degree will receive this stipend for the first 4 years, while students without an MPhil degree will receive this stipend for the first 5 years. The university may also extend additional financial support for Ph.D. students to participate in conferences.
  • Accommodation: History Ph.D. students will be able to take up accommodation at the Ashoka campus, depending on its availability. They can also opt not to stay on campus and avail an extra sum of Rs. 7,500 as Rent Allowance towards off-campus housing.
  • Ph.D. Timeline: The tenure of Ph.D. students at Ashoka University is a maximum of 6 years. Out of this, all students will focus on coursework during their first one or two years, depending on their academic needs. During their second year, students will be required to submit their final Ph.D. Research Proposal. The semester fee is Rs. 12,500 per semester.
Apply Now



  • Eligibility for Application

    Students with Masters in History or a related discipline with 55% or more marks are eligible to apply. In admission, preference will be given to students who already have a research degree (like MPhil) or have experience in research work otherwise. 

  • Application Process and Timeline

    The Department of History, Ashoka University, invites applications for its PhD Programme for the academic year 2023-24. The department is looking for motivated, committed, and bright young scholars, who will be expected to carry out high-quality research.

    • Applications can be submitted between 15 February 2023 and 15 March 2023.
    • All applicants should submit applications only online using the official University website portal. For this, click here.
    • As a part of this online application, applicants will need to upload a research proposal and a writing sample, both in the PDF format.
    • The length of the research proposal should be between 1,500 and 2,000 words, excluding the bibliography. The research proposal should include
      (a) a concrete discussion on the proposed field of research and the research questions,
      (b) a survey of the existing historiography of this field,
      (c) indication of potential primary sources to be analysed, and
      (d) a detailed bibliography of secondary literature.
    • The writing sample does not have a word limit. It should be a piece of writing – an article, an assignment, or a chapter – that the applicant considers to be one of their best works.
    • All applicants are required to appear for a mandatory qualifying entrance examination which will be held online on 1 April 2023. They will be intimated about the logistical details of this once their forms have been submitted and accepted.
    • In the examination, applicants will be required to answer a few essay-type questions. These will test the applicants on the basis of their analytical capability, historical understanding, and the ability to articulate their thoughts clearly. To see past years’ question papers, click here.
    • Applicants shortlisted on the basis of the entrance examination, the research proposal, and academic record will be invited to appear for an online interview in April or May 2023. The list of shortlisted candidates will be published on this webpage. Shortlisted candidates will also be informed by email. All interviews will be held online. The exact dates for the interviews will be announced by the time of the exam.
    • Following the interviews, the final list of applicants selected for admission to the History PhD programme for the academic year 2023-2024 will be published on this webpage. The selected candidates will also be informed by email.
    • The academic session for the new batch of PhD students will begin in August 2023.
    •  All queries related to the PhD application and admission process should be directed to phd.history@ashoka.edu.in.

  • Contact

    All queries related to the Ph.D. application and admission process should be directed to phd.history@ashoka.edu.in

Applications for Ph.D. Programme in History are now open

Student Stories

Study at Ashoka

Study at Ashoka