Master of Arts (M.A): Overview, Courses, Eligibility Criteria, Admission, Exams, Fees, Subjects, Placement, Course Scope & FAQs

Master of Arts

M.A or Master of Arts, is a postgraduate degree in Arts and Humanities obtained after finishing a bachelor’s degree in a selected discipline. The M.A degree takes two years to accomplish and can be done full-time, part-time, by correspondence, or through a remote learning program. The Master of Arts program is generally merit-based and provides admittance to a range of specializations.

However, several colleges, like TISS, JNU, Calcutta University, and Jadavpur University, utilize entrance tests for M.A admission. Merriam-Webster defines M.A. as “the holder of a master’s degree that normally indicates that the recipient has passed an integrated course of study in one or more of the humanities and occasionally has completed a thesis including research or a creative endeavor and that typically needs two years of work beyond a bachelor’s degree and that typically requires two years of work beyond a bachelor’s degree.”

The Master of Arts degree provides a broad career scope in practically every private and public sector of numerous reputable companies, with job responsibilities in theatre, media, entertainment, corporate, writing, advertising, education, politics, and so on. Among the top M.A colleges and institutions are LSR, Miranda House, Hindu College, Hansraj College, Fergusson College, and Christ University. M.A course fees at leading M.A colleges range between INR 15,000 and INR 30,000 every semester.

Students who get an M.A degree will have a strong intellectual foundation that will serve them well in their future jobs. It also provides students with excellent work possibilities and acts as a stepping stone to earning a Ph.D.

Course Highlights

Duration2 years
EligibilityBachelor degree (preferably arts)
Admission ProcessEntrance exams
Exam TypeSemester system
AgeNo age limit


M.A programs are accessible in a wide range of fields. Aside from the courses listed here, several universities also offer M.A degrees in fields such as design, hospitality, and mass communication. Some of the most common specializations in M.A are listed below:

M.A Specialisations

Master of Arts Political ScienceMaster of Arts History
Master of Arts Language (English, Hindi, Sanskrit, Urdu, French, German, Spanish, Chinese/ Mandarin, Greek, Japanese, and Latin)Master of Arts Economics
Master of Arts PsychologyMaster of Arts Communication Studies
Master of Arts SociologyMaster of Arts Religious Studies
Master of Arts PhilosophyMaster of Arts Archaeology
Master of Arts Teaching EducationMaster of Arts International Relations
Master of Arts GeographyMaster of Arts Literature
Master of Arts Library & Information ScienceMaster of Arts Linguistics
Master of Arts Development StudiesMaster of Arts Mathematics
Master of Arts EducationMaster of Arts Music
Master of Arts JournalismMaster of Arts Public Administration
Master of Arts PunjabiMaster of Arts Social Work
Master of Arts Rural DevelopmentMaster of Arts Tamil
Master of Arts AnthropologyMaster of Arts Econometrics
Master of Arts Politics

Eligibility Criteria

In order to be admitted to a Master of Arts program in India, applicants must have completed a graduate degree course comparable to any degree relevant to art. It is a good program for people who have a Bachelor of Arts degree from a reputable university.

However, a Master of Arts is not a requirement for admission to a Master of Arts. Graduate students having a minimum of 50% aggregate grades from any recognized board, institution, or college can apply for any field. In addition to the fundamental qualifying conditions, students seeking a Master of Arts [M.A] must have passed the normal entrance test with high marks from any reputable institute. The candidates will thereafter be interviewed in person. Aspirants can gain admission to the appropriate institution or college after successfully completing these criteria. There is no set age limit or requirement for Master of Arts admission since students of any age can apply and enroll in the program.

M.A course eligibility standards vary depending on the course and college/university. A Master of Arts degree is a specialist study that provides students with an in-depth understanding of the discipline/domain of their choice. As a result, several universities/colleges have their own exams to choose students. However, there are several typical M.A entry criteria that are listed below:

  • Candidate must have a bachelor’s degree (ideally in the arts) from a university/college recognized by the University Grants Commission (UGC) of India.
  • Candidates must have a minimum of 55% overall in their graduating degree.
  • Candidates in their final year must have completed all semester examinations prior to enrolling in the MA program.

M.A Admission Procedure

In India, admission to the Master of Arts program can be obtained either directly through the college or online. The course admission process is strictly based on the scores for graduate degree courses corresponding to that B. A or any related courses, as well as the scores obtained in the entrance exams and the marks obtained in 10+2 classes with English, political science, social studies, psychology, sociology, mass media, and so on. As a result, applicants must meet the Master of Arts eligibility criterion for the course, which is a mix of grades earned in their graduate degree program and entrance tests.

Most universities have their own entrance tests for Master of Arts admission, while others accept candidates based on merit. Some elite colleges also have a second round of screening for admission to M.A programs, which includes WAT and PI.

The following are the numerous ways for obtaining admission to the Master of Arts [M.A] program:

  • Candidates who want to enroll in an M.A program must take and pass an admission test. Most colleges and institutions need an admission test for M.A programs.
  • Some institutions may offer straight M.A admission based on the results of an entrance test. Many institutions, however, employ extra stages of screening, such as group discussions and personal interviews, to choose the best applicants for admission.
  • To progress to the following level, candidates must pass the university/admission institute exam, which is decided by their marks/ranks.

How to Apply for a Master’s Degree in Arts

Those interested in obtaining a Master of Arts degree can apply for the program online or in person. The applicants are chosen for the program based on their bachelor’s degree program grades and the results of any appropriate admission tests in the arts, psychology, sociology, and so on.

Aspirants can apply for the Master of Arts (M.A) program by obtaining an admission form from the university or institution’s website. After submitting their application papers to the college or university, candidates will be asked to take an entrance exam by college officials. Following this, there will be a personal interview, a group discussion.

M.A Selection Process

The selection method for the course is based on the entrance test score related to arts or any other subject, as well as the marks obtained in 10th/12th grade, as well as the graduate degree marks obtained to that of the Master of Arts concerned. Following a written test, personal interview, counseling, and group discussion, aspirants are assigned seats based on several Master of Arts [M.A] criteria met by aspirants offered by college/university officials.

Popular Master of Arts Admission Exams

Many schools and institutions admit students via online admission tests. So, if you want to pursue M.A in any specialty, these are the prominent M.A admission exams you must take.


Fees Structure

For M.A programs, different colleges have varied costs. For government colleges, the cost of the course ranges between INR 15,000 and 30,000. It is more expensive for private colleges, averaging between INR 1 and 3 lakhs.

Graduates with an M.A degree can expect to make between 4 and 7 lakhs INR annually. There are positions available in a variety of profiles for other subjects as well, with the top hiring organizations including Amazon, ITC Limited, Hindustan Times, Times of India, Myntra, TCS, etc.

Top colleges in India for pursuing M.A

The costs for a Master of Arts [M.A] program range from INR 5,000 to 3 LPA. The course cost may vary based on the college/facilities university’s amenities, as well as the degree of education delivered.

              College Name                    Fees Per Annum
Lady Shri Ram College of Women – New DelhiINR 18,000 Per Annum
St. Xavier’s College – MumbaiINR 92,000 Per Annum
Christ University – BangaloreINR 20,000 Per Annum
Mithibai College of Arts – MumbaiINR 25,000 Per Annum
Indian Institute of Art and Design – New DelhiINR 4 Lakhs Per Annum

Subjects & Syllabus

M.A, or Master of Arts, is a two-year master’s degree program in the discipline of arts. The M.A program provides a number of specializations in languages, humanities, and liberal arts areas. Because of its aims, the M.A course is the most sought-after and highly appreciated course. Anyone with a Bachelor’s degree is eligible for this course. M.A Entrance Exams such as BHU PET, JNU EE, PU CET, and others are commonly used for admission.

M.A Syllabus and M.A topics fluctuate by specialty and vary from course to course. However, most M.A course curriculums involve classroom training, lectures, group discussions, field visits, and required dissertation submissions.

M.A subjects covered in a course differ depending on the student’s specialization/stream. Aside from that, minor differences in the M.A syllabus can be seen from one college to the next. The M.A disciplines that candidates would need to study as part of an M.A course syllabus are listed below:

M.A Archaeology Syllabus

Foundations of Social AnthropologySocial Ecology
Archaeological AnthropologyAnthropology of Peasant Societies
Practical – Physical AnthropologyProject, Fieldwork, Dissertation and Viva-Voce
Applied AnthropologyAnthropology of Folklore
Methodology of Anthropological ResearchMinorities, Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes
Ethnology and Comparative EthnographyAnthropology of Urban and Complex Societies
Physical AnthropologyPolitical Anthropology
Practical – Archaeological AnthropologyTheories of Culture and Social Structure
Indians OverseasHuman Biology
Qualitative Methods and ResearchEconomic Anthtopology

M.A English Syllabus

Introduction to LinguisticsPoetry III (Hopkins to Ted Hughes)
Poetry I (Chaucer to Blake)Literary Criticism & Theory 1
Drama I (Marlowe to Wilde excluding Shakespeare)Drama III (Twentieth Century Drama)
Linguistics and English Language TeachingIndian Literature in English I/American Literature-II
ProseFiction II
Poetry II (Wordsworth to Arnold)Literary Criticism & Theory II
Fiction I (Defoe to Hardy)Indian Literature in Translation/Women Writing
Drama II (Shakespeare)Indian Literature in English II/American Literature II

M.A Linguistics Syllabus

Phl. Underpinnings of Modern LinguisticsField Linguistics
Phonetics and Phonology ILanguage Universals and Language Typology
Cognitive LinguisticsSociolinguistics
Syntax IComputational Linguistics
Phonology IIHistorical Linguistics
Syntax IIElective Courses I, II

M.A French Syllabus

Introduction to Francophone LiteratureInterpretative theory of translation
French Novel & French Poetry (20th Century)Use of French
MA dissertationViva-voce
History of French Literature (Origin to XIXth Century)Introduction to Linguistics
Introduction (Literary Analysis of Fiction and Poetry)Linguistic Approach to Translation
History of Art in FranceIntroduction to Translation Studies
History of FranceFrench Drama (20th Century)
Origin of Literature in FrenchEvolution of French Poetry and Novel
Didactic of French as a foreign languageCanadian Literature
Comparative LiteratureStudy of Literary Schools or Movements

M.A Social Work Syllabus

History and Philosophy of Social WorkStatistics and Computer Application
Psychosocial Dynamics of Human BehaviorDynamics of Socio-Political Institutions and Organisations
Methods of Working with People: Micro-ApproachesSocial Policy and Planning
Management of NGOs and Disaster Relief ServicesLabour Legislation and Social work Practice
Social Welfare AdministrationDemography and Population Studies
Methods of working with People: Macro ApproachesCounselling and Social Work Practice
Research MethodologyCommunication and Social work Practice
Man & SocietyLabour Problems and Labour Welfare
Human Growth and DevelopmentSocial Ecology and Management of Environment
Approaches and fields of Social WorkDynamics of Social Development

M.A German Syllabus

Introduction to modern German linguistics – IIMajor Elective Course
Introduction to Modern German Linguistics– IPoetry of classical periods
India in German Literature – II (Realism & Naturalism)The development of Drama( Hebel to Brecht -II)
An introduction (study of literature – II)Training of oral interpretation skill
An introduction to the Study of Literature– IThe development of Drama (Lessing to Hebel – I)

M.A Anthropology Syllabus

Introduction to Social AnthropologyTheories of Social Structure
Qualitative Research MethodsTheories of Culture
Physical AnthropologyApplied Anthropology and Tribal Welfare
Quantitative Research MethodsAnthropology of Complex Societies
Archaeological AnthropologyIndian Society

M.A Chinese/Mandarin Syllabus

Advanced ChineseIntensive Readings in Chinese Literature I
Literature of People’s Republic of ChinaIntensive Readings in Chinese Literature II
Advanced Chinese IIModern Literary Trends and Criticism
Readings in Business and Scientific Documents (Chinese II)Modern Chinese Literature in Translation
Readings in Literary Chinese IReadings in Sino-Indian Interaction
Advanced Chinese IVModern Chinese Language, Literature and Culture
Readings in Political and Economic Documents (Chinese I)Twentieth-Century China
Advanced Chinese IIIWomen in Chinese Literature
Readings in Literary Chinese IIInterpretation and Methods of Teaching
Readings in Comparative LiteratureAdvanced Study in Chinese Grammar
Political and Cultural History Pre-modern ChinaIntensive Readings in Chinese Literature III

M.A English and Comparative Literature Syllabus

Poetry IComparative Literature
Drama ILiterary Theory I
Literary Criticism INew Literatures in English
Twentieth-Century Literature in EnglishLinguistics
Fiction IEnglish Language Teaching
Creative Writing (Interdisciplinary)American Literature II
English for Specific PurposesPhilosophy and Literature
Poetry of the Nineteenth CenturyLiterary Theory II
Indian Literature in EnglishIndian Novel in English Translation
Literary CriticismWriters of the Diaspora
Poetry (Nineteenth Century Science and Literature) 

M.A Economics Syllabus

Microeconomic AnalysisEconomics of Growth
Monetary EconomicsPublic Economics
International FinanceEconomics of Agriculture
Quantitative MethodsSelected Problems of the Indian Economy
Elementary StatisticsIssues in the Indian Economy
Macroeconomic AnalysisIndian Public Finance
International TradeEconomics of Industry
Theory of Pricing and DistributionGrowth Models in Economics
Optional Paper-IOptional Paper-II

M.A Philosophy Syllabus

Classical Indian Philosophy – IIndian Heritage and Axiology
Indian Culture and EthicsContemporary Western Philosophy – I
Logic and Scientific MethodMoral Philosophy
Classical Indian Philosophy – IIContemporary Indian Philosophy – II
Social and Political Philosophy – IContemporary Indian Philosophy – I
Social and Political Philosophy – IIApplied Ethics
Greek and Medieval PhilosophyEpistemology
Modern European PhilosophyContemporary Western Philosophy – II

M.A Econometrics Syllabus

Basic Mathematical MethodsHuman Resource Development
Statistics for EconometricsMacro Economics – II
Micro Economics – IMoney and Finance
Women and EconomyAdvanced Econometrics
Macro Economics – IPanel Data: Theory and Application
Information TechnologyGrowth Economics
Soft SkillContemporary Indian Economic Issues
Basic Econometric MethodsApplied Econometrics
Mathematical EconomicsFinancial Econometrics
Micro Economics – IIPublic Economics

M.A History Syllabus

Social AnthropologyTheories of Group Interaction
Social StatisticsContinuity and Change In India
Methodology of Social SciencesTheories of Group Interaction
Classical Social ThinkersModern Sociological Theories
Sociology of EnvironmentAdvanced Sociological Theories
Group Processes and DynamicsSociological Reviews and Viva-Voce
Tribal Economy and SocietySociology of India

M.A Political Science Syllabus

Modern Indian Political ThoughtComparative Political Analysis
Departmental Elective 3Teaching and Research Aptitude-II
International Relations-Theory and PracticeWestern Political Thought
Research Methods in Political ScienceDissertation-II
Indian Politics-Major Issues and DebatesSeminar on Field Project
Major Ideas and Issues in Public AdministrationState Politics in India
Contemporary Political TheoryDissertation-I

Contemporary Political Issues
Departmental Elective 3
Soft SkillsTeaching and Research Aptitude-I
Politics of Developing CountriesDepartmental Elective 2

M.A Politics Syllabus

Political TheoryElective – I
Public AdministrationElective – III
Comparative Politics, Indian ConstitutionInterdisciplinary/Cross-Disciplinary Course
International RelationsElective – IV
Political Theory IIElective – V
Indian Government and PoliticsElective – II

M.A International Relations Syllabus

Contemporary Political TheoryTheory and Practice of Diplomacy
Modern Political ThoughtEnergy Politics in International Relations
Theory of International Relations – IIndian Foreign Policy: Post-Cold War Era
Comparative Political AnalysisElectives
Indian Political SystemInternational Political Economy
Gender in Global PoliticsNational and Global Security in Contemporary World
Theory of International Relations-IIResearch Methodology
Geopolitics in International RelationsResearch Dissertation – II
Thinkers in International RelationsResearch Dissertation – I

M.A Public Administration Syllabus

Concepts and Ideas of Public AdministrationComparative Local Government: Nature and Significance
Indian Administration: State and District AdministrationFinancial Administration in India: Processes
Administrative Theories and Thinkers: Classical EraComparative Administration
Public Personnel Administration: Concepts and IssuesTheory and Practice of Management
Public Personnel Administration: Theory and PracticePublic Policy
Evolution and Framework of Indian AdministrationFinancial Administration in India: Concepts and Structure
Administrative Theories and Thinkers: Modern EraDevelopment Administration
Citizen and Administration: Concepts and IssuesFundamentals of Computers/International Public Administration – I
Principles and Practices of Public AdministrationComparative Local Government: Process and Issues

M.A Hindi Syllabus

History of Hindi Literature- Ancient & MedievalNovel and Short Story
Hindi Poetry and ProsesAncient Hindi Poetry
Origin of Hindi LanguageHindi Drama

M.A Sociology Syllabus

Sociological TheoriesSociology of India
Methods of Sociological ResearchPopulations and Society
Gender and SocietyAgrarian Structure
Sociology of OrganizationsSociology of Media

M.A Gender Studies Syllabus

Introduction to Gender StudiesFeminist Movement
Feminist TheoriesGender and Economy
Gender, Environment, and LivelihoodGender Analysis
Gender, Polity and GovernanceGender Mainstreaming

M.A Education Syllabus

Educational PsychologyGuidance & Counselling
Educational Administration & ManagementEducational Measurement & Evaluation
Educational TechnologyLife-Long Education

M.A Fine Arts Syllabus

History of Fine Arts in IndiaHistory of Indian Painting
Drawing & PaintingHistory of Indian Architecture

Subject for the Master of Arts

All Master of Arts disciplines are taught in several specialty courses, which assist students in understanding the knowledge and pursuing a higher Ph.D. degree for future work opportunities. The Master of Arts subjects taught in the course curriculum of The Master of Arts, such as literature, history, fine arts, psychology, sociology, economy, politics, ethics, novels, and so on, are necessary for postgraduates to expand their knowledge in theoretical and research aspects, which will benefit them to get a better scope in jobs in India and abroad on the basis of their skills.

Furthermore, other courses are connected to the arts and humanities curriculum, such as language, history, education, writing, theory, philosophy, and so on.

Core SubjectsElective Subjects
LinguisticsPolitical science

The Master of Arts Reference Books

The best books for Master of Arts students assist them to grasp the many disciplines and topics included in the course program. Master of Arts [M.A] reference books assist undergraduates in broadening their knowledge and understanding of a variety of topics addressed in their coursework. Some of the top Master of Arts books include

Ordinary and Partial Differential EquationsM D Raisinghania
Essentials Of Educational PsychologyS.K. Mangal
History of English LiteratureEdward Alber
Adhunik Bharat Ka ItihasBipan Chandra
Integral Equations And Boundary Value Problems Dr. M. D. Raisinghania


Master of Arts salaries in India range from INR 2 and 50 LPA in the public and commercial sectors of many reputable companies. The M.A salary in India may rise as a result of the student’s abilities, techniques, and job experience. Master of Arts postgraduates earn roughly INR 20,000 – 10L per month. Some of the top and highest paying jobs for Master of Arts graduates in India following the degree are as follows :

EconomistINR 50,000 PM
Content WriterINR 40,000 PM
Administrative OfficerINR 66,000 PM
HistorianINR 70,000 PM
ProfessorINR 45,000 PM

Course Scope

There are several options for pursuing an M.A in any field. Students who have earned an M.A, for example, will have a distinct viewpoint or an original point of view on a certain subject.

  • Students who get a master’s degree in the arts will have a strong academic foundation that will serve them well in their future jobs. It also gives fantastic work prospects for pupils.
  • The M.A is a stepping stone to doctorate studies. Students with a master’s degree may seek a doctorate because master’s degrees are a significant prerequisite for entrance to doctoral programs.
  • Politics, public relations, economics, history, archaeology, education, philosophy, psychology, and sociology are among the subjects in which students might become specialists.
  • When a student seeks a master of arts degree, they are opening the door to a world of options in the industry in which they wish to work. A master’s degree allows students to explore more rewarding job options.

FAQs Related to M.A

Q. What can you do with an M.A in Political Science?

Ans. After earning your M.A in Political Science, you can pursue a career in Social Media, Mass Media, Reporting, Writing, Public Relations, Campaigning, Politics, and other fields.

Q. Can you pick an M.A History specialization?

Ans. Yes, candidates interested in pursuing an M.A in History can select from three specializations: Ancient History, Medieval History, and Modern History.

Q. Can you become a teacher after completing an M.A in any subject?

Ans. No, to become a teacher, the individual must first complete their B.Ed. A postgraduate degree can only increase your worth and knowledge.

Q. Do universities offer postgraduate Linguistics courses?

Ans. Yes, M.A in Linguistics programs are available at a number of universities. It will also last two years.

Q. What are the admission requirements for M.A in Archaeology?

Ans. The candidate must have a B.A in Archaeology/History/Anthropology/Philosophy or a related field from a recognized university and a minimum of 55% aggregate marks.

Q. Which is preferable: M.A History or M.A Sociology?

Ans. M.A Sociology opens up more job opportunities in international organizations, embassies, public relations businesses, research, public health and welfare organizations, politics, media, and so forth.

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