Junior Research Fellow the title alone brings with it admiration and esteem. A Junior Research Fellow or as we commonly know JRF is an individual pursuing a Ph.D. degree from a recognized educational institution/university in India. A JRF is necessarily a full time Ph.D. scholar financially supported by either one of the Government of India (GoI) Departments or any educational institution.
The major difference between other Ph.D. scholars and JRF is the JRF stipend and additional perks that come along the title. A JRF is given a monthly JRF stipend which is currently 31,000/- per month. Apart from this, a JRF is also entitled to a hostel facility of the institute or house rent allowance (HRA as per the government norms). Additionally, they also receive an annual contingency amount of approximately Rs. 20,000/-. Many institutions also support JRFs in presenting their research work in international conferences at least once, during their tenure of research.
Selection of a JRF
The selection of a JRF is usually based on their performance in the one of the many national eligibility exams for Ph.D. (depending on the scholar’s qualifications) like, NET, CSIR NET, GATE, JEST, JAM, BET, JGEEBILS, AICE, and so on. However, it should be duly noted that qualifying these examinations makes an individual eligible for the fellowship; however, a fellowship is only granted after the scholar has secured admission in one of the recognized/partnered educational institution in India.
Promotion from JRF to SRF
After securing admission and fulfilling all the mandatory formalities as desired by the fellowship granting body the journey of JRF begins. A scholar showing satisfactory progress is entitled to be promoted to a Senior Research Fellow or SRF. The monthly SRF stipend is Rs. 35000/- in addition to the HRA and annual contingency amount.
JRF and SRF Tenure
The total tenure of JRF plus SRF is usually 5 years, two years as JRF & 3 years as SRF. In case the progress of JRF is not found satisfactory during the first two years then they can be given an additional year to prove their mettle, but not beyond that. The total tenure of five years remains the same.
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