M.Phil. Programme

M.Phil. in Sociology is a full time one year research degree course (This Programme will no longer be offered by the Department of Sociology from 2022 onwards )

The M.Phil. programme of one year duration consists of two parts of six months each. Part I comprises course work where students have to complete one compulsory research methods course, and any two of the optional courses offered in the year of their admission. A selection of the optional courses listed below will be offered each year depending on research interests and availability of admitted students and faculty. The specific topics and readings that will be covered each year in any paper will be finalized based on student and faculty interests and requirements at the beginning of the academic session. Students are expected to select two courses from the basket of courses offered after attending an introductory class offered for each course during the first week of classes.


Compulsory Course
  1. Research Methods
Optional Courses
  1. Reflections on Ethnography
  2. Contemporary Class Analysis
  3. Philosophical Anthropology
  4. Structuralism and Post-Structuralism
  5. Theorising Democracy, Equality and Social Justice
  6. Archaeology of Caste
  7. Crisis – Event
  8. Everyday Life and its Horizons
  9. Sociology of Health and Illness
  10. Theorising Masculinities
  11. Rethinking the Family in Contemporary Society
  12. Nature, Society, Environment
  13. Sociology of Civil War
  14. Studying the State
  15. Agrarian Structure
  16. Transnational Migration, Gender and Identities
  17. Social Discrimination and Subalterneity: Historical and Comparative Perspectives
  18. Gender and Population: Perspectives on Reproduction, Sexuality, and Power
  19. Women in Indian Society
  20. Art, Modernism, and the Public
  21. Ethnographies of Violence: Perspectives from Europe and Asia
  22. Gender in Contemporary India
  23. Sociology of Punjab
  24. Sociology of Schooling: Perspectives and Practice
  25. Climate Change and Society
  26. Culture, Reproduction and Technology
  27. Sociology of Law
  28. Texts of our Times
  29. Biopolitics and Social Life
  30. Texts in Modern Indian Social Thought

M.Phil. Syllabus

Part I: Course Work

The evaluation of the performance of candidates in each paper will be based on the assignments and written tests conducted by the teacher/teachers concerned.

In order to pass in Part I, a candidate must secure at least 50% in each paper. A candidate who fails to secure an aggregate of 50% in Part-I, but has completed all other requirements, may be permitted to move to Part-II of the M.Phil. programme (Dissertation). This is subject to securing at least 50% in each of two papers out of the three papers comprising the Part-I programme. However, such a candidate will not be eligible to submit his/her dissertation unless the minimum requirements for passing Part-I have been fulfilled by improving his/her performance in the paper in which he/ she has secured less than 50% marks.

A candidate who has secured more than 60% marks in Part-I of the M.Phil. programme has the option to seek direct admission to the Ph.D. Course for which the candidate would be required to submit a research abstract.

Part II: Dissertation

After passing the Part-I examination a student shall be required to write a dissertation. The topic and the nature of the dissertation of each candidate will be determined by an Advisory Committee consisting of two members including the supervisor. Candidates will be required to submit four typed copies of the dissertation and a soft copy on CD along with an abstract of not more than 500 words. Two copies of the dissertation should be printed on both sides of the paper and a third copy should be hard bound. The length of the M. Phil. dissertation shall ordinarily be between 10,000 to 15,000 words.

The dissertation will be submitted only when the supervisor is satisfied that it is worthy of consideration in partial fulfillment of the M.Phil. degree.

The dissertation may include results of original research, a fresh interpretation of existing facts and data, a critical review, or it may take any other form as determined by the Advisory Committee.

Note: The evaluation of candidates in Part I and II of the M. Phil. Programme will conform to the following scheme:

Pass: At least 50% marks in each of the written papers (Part I) and 50% marks in the dissertation (Part II).

First division: 60% marks in the aggregate of Part I and II.

First Division with distinction: 75% marks in the aggregate of Part I and II.

The minimum attendance requirements will be 2/3rds of the total number of lectures, seminars, and discussions held in each course.

Attendance at research seminars conducted by the Research Colloquium is compulsory for M.Phil. students.

The M.Phil. Programme has been discontinued from 2022-23 session.

The proposal should be of approximately 1000 words, exclusive of references. Candidates are required to declare that the proposal submitted is their own work; unacknowledged borrowing from other sources will be penalised. The proposal should include the following sections:

Objective – two or three paras; this section should describe the main argument/hypothesis you are considering and the research questions you will be asking.

Literature Review (The literature referred to could be theoretical, or a combination of both theoretical and empirical. Show the relevance of the literature cited to the research objectives.)

Specification of research site and locus (empirical, geographical, theoretical) and justification for site in terms of the topic and availability of materials.

References (follow any consistent social science style of referencing; note that this is not a bibliography – relevance is important, not the length of the list.)

Keep in mind the feasibility of the study in terms of

a) sociological relevance

b) time required (the thesis should ideally be completed within six months)

c) availability of data sources (M.Phil. theses in the Department usually rely entirely on secondary sources)

You may find helpful material on the following links (although they deal with PhDs, the basic principles involved in preparing proposals are the same)

Writing a Good Ph.D. Research Proposal

An example of a successful Ph.D. Proposal

M.Phil Notices