I've been considering a PhD, but the details of how it works confuses me. For example, this course charges 45K per semester as fees, but offers a monthly fellowship of 38.5K. Why do they even need to charge a fee then? Can't they just deduct it from the fellowship amount?
Also, if there's a fellowship, doesn't it mean that somebody is sponsoring the work? So if a full-time scholar is sacrificing a corporate job to solve a technical problem and comes up with a new discovery for someone, isn't this a service being provided? Why is the scholar being charged a fee then? It's like asking a mechanic to pay me when he discovers a solution to a problem with my car.
This institution seems to provide scholarships based on entrance exam scores. So as I understand it, unless a person has good scores, doing a PhD is a financial risk for approximately 5 to 7 years.
If a scholar starts a PhD with a promise that fellowship will be provided for 5 years, can the fellowship still be withdrawn before 5 years? Won't that put the scholar under financial duress? I'm asking these because before I choose to do a PhD somewhere, I need to know the financial risks.
I've seen this explanation, but the concepts are still unclear.
- A PhD scholarship is likely to be full-funding that isn’t attached to a specific project. Some scholarships are also more specific, perhaps being limited to a payment for fees or living costs, but not both.
- A PhD fee waiver removes the need for a student to pay for their tuition, but doesn’t cover living costs. Essentially this is a way
for universities to offer partial funding by not charging you to
study your PhD with them.
- A PhD stipend is a regular payment for living costs. It functions a bit like an annual salary, but is usually paid tax-free. It’s rare
for a separate funding package to be referred to in this way, but
full scholarships and studentships include a stipend.
- A PhD bursary is money paid to a student during a degree. If this is paid for living costs as part of a full-funding package it may be referred to as a PhD stipend (see above). Otherwise the term
‘bursary’ is used for more general funding.
- A PhD grant is a specific payment, usually made on a one-off basis in order to assist a student in carrying out research. It might be a substantial amount intended to provide all (or almost all) of the funding you need; or it might be paid for a specific purpose, such as research travel or the purchase of equipment.