Ph.D. or PhD?

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Ph.D. or PhD? Well, isn’t this a bummer? What’s the true or correct form of the abbreviation? Does the abbreviated form vary from country to country, or rather according to institution? Aren’t they both correct? Isn’t this just a case of English grammar? I mean, what’s the big deal if I use either? Is there a big deal?

I have so many questions in my head right now, that I’m probably being generous only asking the few above. Now, I think about what can I really understand from differentiating these two? An immediate thought that flows in is the desire to learn and understand more about the reasons and history of the abbreviation “PHD”. I believe, somehow, that it is essential for me, and you all, to know this. Where you apply this knowledge is a mystery, but having it will do you no wrong.

With all that said, knowing whether its Ph.D. or PhD will need to critical assessment and review. We may hopefully get a useful insight into our problem.

Before going further, we will need to define the subject matter, so as to use it as a base or launch pad which we will use to propel our research in this article.

What is a Ph.D. or PhD?

The terms Ph.D or PhD both stand for the same thing, ” doctor of philosophy “. They refer to the highest academic honour available in so many areas of academic study and research. The Ph.D. or PhD are widely subdivided in order to suit respective fields of study and profession. For example, the Ph.D. or PhD is given to practitioners of medicine and health science as MD. This is just one example of the various and different classifications.

There is a very extensive history concerning the origination of the Ph.D. or PhD, and you can read it up extensively in this article from Wikipedia.

I will now look into the origination of the variations for the abbreviation of this top academic degree.

If I have picked your interest and you are now curious to know which abbreviation is correct, whether its Ph.D. or PhD, stay with us as we continue to take you through this article. You can also read up on this interesting piece from us about low tuition schools in the United Kingdom.

Origination of the different abbreviations

I’ve really gone through a lot of work and understand the originations. The abbreviation “Ph.D.” is actually the North American English way of writing it down. The opposite, being “PhD” is mostly used by British English speakers.

The trend today in many parts of the world has been to drop the periods, but North American companies, schools and organisations still use these periods. This point is proven by an expat who has worked in both a British and American company. His view is one of many others in response to a question asked on this exact topic. You can get all responses from the site they were asked and published on here.

Having said all this, I want to take a look at some of the requirements which may be generally accepted in various institutions.

Generally Accepted Requirements for Studying to obtain a Ph.D. or PhD

Ph.D. or PhD


Well, in most universities and research institutions across the globe, various academic standards and requirements are asked of intending students. This varies according to the taste of the institution in question. However, a few requirements are constant world over. These are what we are looking at, they are;

  1. Holding an undergraduate degree of high grade. For example, it should be a UK second class upper (2.1) as the minimum. The degree must be in a relevant discipline.
  2. A master’s degree which should also be in a relevant discipline.

With at least the master’s degree, you have met majority of the criteria for most schools. Studying to graduate with the doctorate of philosophy degree becomes feasible at this point.

Now, before continuing on our search for the correct abbreviation form, whether Ph.D. or PhD, I will like us to digress a bit.

Some people may be looking for countries with great programmes, which are also very affordable. I see it as essential to help out here, and so I will give you 5 very affordable countries where you can study to acquire a Ph.D.

5 affordable countries to obtain a PhD in

My criteria for selecting these countries is very simple. I’m looking at average Ph.D. tuition rate, average cost of living, openness to international students.

Based on the three points I have listed out, a list, in no particular order of preference, about these five countries has been compiled and given below.

1. Australia

Ph.D. or PhD

The Oceanic nation is one of the most popular student destinations as it is home to the third highest number of international students. It’s also a very beautiful nation with many national sights that attract tourists from the world over. The country also boasts of one of the highest standards of living in the world.

  • Average cost of Ph.D. tuition: around $12,000 for an entire 3 year course. Australian citizens may not need to pay for PhD tuition in some schools as long as it is within 4 years.
  • Average Cost of Living: around $2,800 per month

2. Canada

Ph.D. or PhD

If you love a chilly country to learn in, then the second largest north American country is the one for you. A cold atmosphere, most beautiful natural landscapes and a multicultural diversity makes Canada a studying heaven for students from all walks of life. It is home to some renowned universities like McGill University.

  • Average cost of Ph.D. tuition: around $4000 per year
  • Average cost of living: for a student, it is around $1000 a month.

3. France

Ph.D. or PhD

France is a very fun place to learn in. In you are interested in a luxurious lifestyle and want to balance it out with the serious rigours of academics, then the home of the Eiffel Tower is your destination. France is again, one of the most diverse, multiethnic countries on earth. This makes it a boiling pot of a variety of wonderful cultures to explore.

Yes, the cost of living is quite high in some cities, thanks to the luxurious life of the French, but it is also the same for the standard of living. It however, has a low cost of tuition for this e looking to move forward with their Ph.D. or PhD programs.

  • Average cost of PhD tuition: €380 per year.
  • Average cost of living: €1000 per year.

4. Germany

Ph.D. or PhD

One of the best, if not the best, countries on earth to study in. The country is primed for higher education, with many institutions offering free or very small tuition fees. The country has a very high standard of education and is a very exceptional place to further your academic pursuit. There are a lot of fine universities to choose from, such as the Technical University of Munich. The country is the haven for all academic scholars who want great education at a very affordable rate.

  • Average cost of PhD tuition: basically free in mist public higher institutions.
  • Average Cost of Living: around €850 a month.

5. Singapore

Ph.D. or PhD

The Asian country rounds off our list, but should not be seen as the least among the countries mentioned. In fact the country has seen its importance to academic research increase thanks to the National University of Singapore and Nanyang Technological institute. The advantage here is that most people communicate in English. Its fine cultural life, lost cost of living, low tax rate, low crime rate and reduced political corruption make it a very beautiful and welcoming place to study in and live in after you complete your academic pursuits.

  • Average cost of PhD tuition:
  • Average cost of Living:

These countries are just 5 out of tens of countries you could choose from. You are the one to ultimately make that choice, but we will be here to guide you on that process.

Now, heading back to our topic of discourse, whether Ph.D. or PhD? Its important to note that the research conducted has shown that either Ph.D. or PhD is correct. In fact, the only difference between the two is literally the periods in Ph.D..

This therefore makes it quite funny that we have had to choose either a Ph.D. or PhD. In the end, English has played a huge part here. Grammar at its finest (or at its most confusing state).

So, the next time you land in an argument about Ph.D. or PhD, just calmly smile and refer your opponent to this article.

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