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    Psychiatry Courses Overview

    Psychiatry is an exciting and vital branch of medicine owing to its nature of science. Psychiatry courses deal with identifying and treating mental illnesses with the help of in-depth psychiatric knowledge. Studying this course would enable students to assist people working in disciplines related to psychiatry or themselves to treat psychiatric illnesses frequently. Psychiatry, in other words, is the medical speciality concerned with the diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of mental diseases. Psychiatry courses are appropriate for medical and other health aspirants who want to get an in-depth understanding of contemporary psychiatry practices.

    There are various psychiatry courses available at different study levels, such as certificate, diploma, undergraduate, postgraduate and doctorate courses. Thus, applicants can pursue these courses immediately after finishing their class 12 or after completing their bachelor’s studies. Depending on the type of course, the average duration to complete these courses is three months to four years. Admission to a psychiatry programme is based on candidates' class 12th/bachelor's/master's results. Some colleges may additionally require NEET, AIIMS, JMIEE, AMUEE, or other entrance test qualifications.

    AIIMS, Christian Medical College, JIPMER, Jamia Hamdard University, and others are among the top psychiatry colleges in India. The average tuition fee for psychiatry courses is between INR 30,000 to INR 25 lakh per year. The return on investment (ROI) in this area in terms of starting salary is also attractive, with freshers earning INR 3-18 lakh per year. 

    Psychiatry Courses Highlights

    Some of the important highlights of psychiatry courses in India for applicants to consider are as follows:



    Degree Level

    Certificate, Diploma, Bachelor’s, Master’s and Doctorate 


    • Certificate: 3-12 months 
    • UG Diplomas and PG Diplomas: 1-2 years 
    • Bachelor’s: 3-4 years 
    • Master’s: 2 years 
    • Doctorate (PhD): 3-4 years 

    Exam Type 


    Minimum Qualification Requirement

    • Diploma/UG: Class 12 from a recognized board with Psychology as a mandatory subject
    • PG Diploma/PG: Bachelor’s course from a recognized university in a relevant field of study.
    • Doctorate: Master’s course from a recognised university in a relevant field of study.

    Average Salary 

    INR 3-18 lakh per year 

    Average Fees Incurred 

    INR 10,000-INR 25,00,000 

    Selection Process 

    Entrance + Merit-based 

    Popular Entrance Exams 

    NEET, AIIMS, NEET PG, AIIMS PG, JMIEE, AMUEE, University of Delhi Entrance Exam, etc.

    Top Psychiatry Specialisation 

    Addiction Psychiatry, Forensic Psychiatry, Adult Psychiatry, Child Psychiatry, Psychosomatic Medicine, Consultation-Liaison Psychiatry, Emergency Psychiatry, Neuropsychiatry, Geriatric Psychiatry

    Minimum Aggregate Percentage Required for Admission 


    Top Recruiters 

    Wellness Centres, Government and Private Hospitals, Government and Private Clinics, Universities and Institutes, etc

    Career Prospects 

    Forensic Psychiatrist, Clinical Psychiatrist, Staff Psychiatrist, Child Psychiatrist, Addiction Psychiatrist, Neuropsychiatrist, etc.

    Why Study Psychiatry?

    Mental sickness may be equally debilitating as physical disease, if not more so. As medical students, candidates learn about medical specialities and get to experience them all during rotations. Owing to its emphasis on mental health, psychiatry is a subspecialty of medicine. There is now a nationwide scarcity of psychiatrists around the world and the demand is high.

    Aside from a thriving job market, medical students on the verge of deciding their fields and applying for a residency should consider psychiatry for a variety of reasons, including its incredible flexibility, sense of reward, ability to become more empathetic, and overall usefulness in a fast-paced world. Let us look at some of the most essential reasons to study psychiatry in this day and age:

    • Ability to Help People/Patients: The ability to impact people's mental health and well-being is one incentive to consider studying psychiatry and becoming a psychiatrist. Psychiatrists can assist their patients in overcoming trauma, destructive behaviours, or mental diseases that may impair their capacity to function successfully in society.
    • Higher Earning Potential: Another reason to consider taking psychiatry courses is the possible income opportunities. Private practitioners can determine their charges and typically make a decent livelihood.
    • An Exciting Field of Study: Students studying to become psychiatrists learn about the many mental, behavioural, and emotional illnesses that might impact their patients. They learn to identify and treat these diseases, as well as attempt to enhance patient functionality and health whenever possible. Psychiatry may be a very intriguing profession for people who are interested in the human brain and mental diseases.
    • Graduates Can Set Up Their Practice: Psychiatry courses graduates may opt to start their practices. This allows them to create their schedules, choose which patients to visit, and work anywhere they choose. The independence and flexibility of owning a firm might be compelling reasons to become a doctor.
    • Better Stress Management: Psychiatrists who work their hours can make it simpler for themselves to manage the rigours of their profession and recuperate psychologically when necessary.
    • Respected Occupation: Graduates must finish significant training and study to become psychiatrists. This can increase the respect they receive from their peers, family, and social circles. Many people are aware of the essential job that psychiatrists do and appreciate the assistance they bring to their communities and individuals in need.

    Different Types of Psychiatry Courses

    Psychiatry is a large and highly demanded medical field of study, therefore aspirants can discover a variety of different psychiatry courses to study in India at various levels. Some of these courses/programmes are listed below:

    Programme/Study Level 

    Popular Psychiatry Courses 


    • Certification in Psychiatry 
    • Certificate in Mental Health
    • Certificate Course in Perinatal Mental Health
    • Psychological First Aid 
    • Positive Psychiatry and Mental Health 
    • Abnormal Psychology
    • Introduction to Psychology
    • History of Mental Illness 


    • Diploma in Psychiatry/Psychology
    • Post Graduate Diploma in Psychiatry/Psychology
    • Diploma in Clinical Psychiatry
    • Diploma in Child Psychiatry
    • Diploma in Adult Psychiatry
    • Diploma in Psychiatric Medicine
    • Diploma in Psychiatric Nursing
    • Post Graduate Diploma in Community Based Rehabilitation
    • Post Graduate Diploma in Psychiatric Social Work


    • BSc in Psychiatry 
    • BSc in Psychology 
    • BSc in Psychiatric Nursing
    • MBBS

    PG Diploma 

    • MSc in Psychiatry 
    • MSc in Psychology
    • MD in Psychiatry
    • MPhil in Psychiatry 
    • MPhil in Psychology
    • MSc in Clinical & Community Psychiatry
    • MSc in Psychiatric Nursing
    • MSc in Counselling Psychology
    • Master in Criminology
    • Master of Brain and Sciences 
    • MSc in Addiction Psychiatry
    • MSc in Behavioural Science


    • Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Psychiatry
    • PhD in Clinical Psychology
    • PhD in Psychiatric Nursing
    • PhD in Psychiatric Social Work
    • PhD in Counselling Psychology
    • PhD in Addiction Psychiatry
    • PhD in Child Psychiatry
    • PhD in Human Behaviour Psychiatry

    What are the Subspecialties of Psychiatry Study?

    There are several subspecialties in psychiatry that allow practitioners to specialise in specific problems or groups. However, the primary subspecialties are those that are recognised for training reasons at both the senior house officer and specialist registrar levels. They are as follows:

    • General Adult Psychiatry: It is hospital-based and treats all mental problems in people aged 18 to 65.
    • Social and Community Psychiatry (Includes Rehabilitation): Treats persons aged 18 to 65, although the emphasis is on managing patients so that they can remain in their homes. a more comprehensive interdisciplinary approach
    • Psychiatry for the Elderly: Both hospital and community-based, albeit with a stronger emphasis on the latter.
    • Child and Adolescent Psychiatry: Specialisation in developmental problems such as behaviour disorders or depression. It might be at a hospital or in the community.
    • Liaison Psychiatry: This is another hospital-based service that encompasses inpatient wards as well as the emergency department.
    • Forensic Psychiatry: This is concerned with mental illnesses in criminals and is practised in hospitals, communities, or prisons.
    • Substance Abuse or Addiction Psychiatry: Provides treatment for a variety of addictions, the majority of which include alcohol and opiate abuse.
    • Disabilities in Learning Psychiatry: This has a strong community emphasis and is concerned with both hereditary and perinatally acquired mental diseases that influence intellectual and social function, such as Down's syndrome and cerebral palsy.
    • Psychotherapy: Psychotherapy is a broad word for treating mental health issues by consultation with a psychiatrist, psychologist, or other mental health professional.

    Psychiatry Courses Entrance Exams

    One of the key admission or eligibility requirements for candidates to pursue psychiatry courses (particularly postgraduate degrees) in India is passing entrance examinations with minimal qualifying grades. Here are a few well-known psychiatry entrance exams used by leading universities and institutes to screen qualified/eligible students for their programmes:

    • Aligarh Muslim University Entrance Exam
    • All India Institute of Medical Sciences Entrance Exam
    • All India Institute of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation (AIIPMR) Entrance Exam
    • Central Institute of Psychiatry Entrance Exam
    • Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore
    • Institute of Human Behaviour and Allied Sciences (IHBAS) Entrance Exam
    • Institute of Medical Sciences Entrance Exam
    • Jamia Millia Islamia Entrance Exam
    • Karnataka University Entrance Exam
    • Maharashtra University of Health Sciences Entrance Exam
    • Manipal Academy of Higher Education Entrance Exam
    • National Council of Educational Research and Training Entrance Exam
    • National Institute of Mental Health and Neuro Sciences Entrance Exam
    • Rajiv Gandhi University of Health Sciences Entrance Exam
    • Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS) Entrance Exam
    • The Central Institute of Psychiatry (CIP) Entrance Exam
    • The Indian Institute of Technology - Joint Entrance Exam (IIT-JEE)
    • University of Delhi Entrance Exam
    • University of Rajasthan Entrance Exam

    Psychiatry Courses Eligibility Criteria

    Psychiatry courses at different levels of study have varying eligibility criteria for admission. The table below highlights the general admission or eligibility criteria for aspirants to study psychiatry courses in India: 

    Programme/Study Level 

    Basic Eligibility Criteria 


    Candidates must have passed (or must be studying in) class 12 from a recognised board.


    Students must have cleared class 12 from a recognised school board, with at least 50%-60% aggregate marks.


    Students must score at least 50-60% aggregate in class 12 board exams and sit for an entrance exam as well.

    PG Diploma 

    Students must have a bachelor’s degree in a relevant field of study from a recognised university.


    Students must have a bachelor’s degree in psychiatry or any other relevant field of study from a recognised university with at least 50%-60% aggregate marks and entrance exam qualifying scores. 


    Students must have a master’s degree in psychiatry or any other relevant field of study from a recognised university with at least 60% aggregate marks and entrance exam qualifying scores. Practical experience may be required.

    How to Get Admission to a Psychiatry Course?

    Aspirants must be knowing that admission to psychiatry courses is strictly based on the aggregate marks obtained in class 12th/bachelor's degree/master's degree. Besides this, many universities and institutes in India also conduct different entrance exams to screen eligible students for admission to psychiatry courses. Having said that, candidates can begin their application process for psychiatry courses both online and offline. Here are some important points to remember before applying:

    • Students must go to the university's or college's website and correctly fill out all of the essential information/personal data in the student application form. Applicants must wait for any necessary letters from the college/university after enrolling.
    • Following online registration, applicants must appear at the university premises with all necessary papers, including all previous academic transcripts, mark sheets, certificates, ID verification, and pictures.
    • Candidates who choose to apply offline must obtain an application form from the college campus and submit it after correctly filling it out with the necessary information.
    • Students will be admitted to their chosen colleges/universities based on their past academic results, performance and entrance exam qualifying scores. It is also important to note that admission will be granted only to those eligible students who fulfil all the eligibility criteria and clear the cut-off marks set by the college/institute. 

    Popular Colleges in India for Psychiatry Courses

    Some of the most renowned colleges in India that are offering psychiatry courses to aspirants are tabulated below: 

    Name of the College/Institute 


    Bharti Vidyapeeth Deemed University Medical College


    Aryabhatta Knowledge University


    Osmania Medical College


    Jamia Hamdard University

    New Delhi

    All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS)

    New Delhi

    Christian Medical College

    Tamil Nadu 

    Lady Hardinge Medical College

    New Delhi

    Kasturba Medical College


    King George's Medical University

    Uttar Pradesh 

    Maulana Azad Medical College

    New Delhi 

    MGR Educational and Research Institute


    Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research


    Armed Forces Medical College


    SRM Institute of Science and Technology


    MS Ramaiah Medical College 


    Popular Colleges Abroad to Study Psychiatry Courses

    Since mental health is a global issue, many international institutions are also pioneering in promoting Psychiatry courses. Here is a list of some of the most renowned international universities and colleges for aspirants to study psychiatry courses abroad:

    Name of the College/Institute 


    Harvard University 

    United States 

    Stanford University 

    United States 

    Columbia University 

    United States 

    Yale University

    United States 

    University of Oxford 

    United Kingdom 

    King’s College London

    United Kingdom 

    University College London 

    United Kingdom 

    University of Cambridge 

    United Kingdom 

    University of Toronto


    University of British Columbia 


    McGill University


    McMaster University


    University of Amsterdam


    Karolinska Institute 


    University of Melbourne 


    Catholic University of Leuven 


    University of New South Wales 


    The University of Queensland 


    University of Sydney 


    The University of Auckland 

    New Zealand 

    What is Psychiatry Courses Fees?

    The fees for psychiatry courses are determined by a variety of factors, including the type of course, level of programme, type of university, location, and others. The following are the estimated fees for psychiatry courses in India at various levels of study:

    Programme/Study Level 

    Average Annual Estimated Fee Range in INR 







    PG Diploma 




    Syllabus of Psychiatry Courses

    Psychiatric courses in India have different course curriculums based on the degree, level of study, university, and other criteria. The following are the key subjects that applicants will study while studying psychiatry courses in India:

    Clinical Psychiatry


    Child Psychiatry

    Community Psychiatry

    Basic Sciences as applied to Psychiatry

    Human Anatomy

    Biochemistry of the Brain

    Neurology and Neurosurgery

    Approaching to Psychiatric Diagnosis and Classification

    Social Psychiatry

    Forensic Psychiatry

    Preventive Psychiatry

    Behavioral Therapies

    Anxiety Disorders


    Organic Delusional, Mood and Personality Disorders


    Preventive psychiatry and practical training at a mental asylum

    General Psychiatry

    Psychiatry specialities including psychosomatic medicines and consultations

    Psychiatry Courses Scope in India – Career, Job Prospects and Top Recruiters

    As this profession deals with an individual's mental health or the human brain, there is a wide range of employment opportunities in psychiatry. Individuals might seek the advice of a consulting psychologist to safeguard their mental health. Furthermore, each practitioner of psychiatry has their point of view, but they all focus on one important agenda: the mental condition of a person.

    Some of the most well-known job roles, along with their job descriptions, are included below:

    Job Roles

    Job Description

    Addiction Psychiatrist

    Addiction Psychiatrists treat persons of all ages who have addictions to illicit substances, alcohol, and prescription medications that are exacerbated by concurrent mental health illnesses such as depression, bipolar disorder, or schizophrenia, among other things.

    Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist

    Doctors in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry deal with children, adolescents, and their families. They address a wide range of mental health issues and ailments, such as autism spectrum disorders, depression, anxiety, substance abuse, and eating disorders.

    Forensic Psychiatrist

    A Forensic Psychiatrist is someone who works with the mental health of prisoners, criminals, and others. They are in charge of diagnosing and treating convicts, criminals, and so on.


    A professor or lecturer is someone who strives to deliver the necessary information and abilities to students who want to become competent psychiatrists in the future by utilising various strategies.

    General Adult Psychiatrist

    In instances involving substance abuse, a general adult psychiatrist consults with and treats patients aged 18 and up.

    Rehabilitation Psychiatrist

    A Rehabilitation Psychiatrist is a clinician that helps patients overcome mental illnesses and regain their maximum level of functioning.


    A neuropsychiatrist treats patients who have mental imbalances as well as emotional and mental disorders.

    Clinical Psychiatrist

    A clinical psychiatrist helps patients cope with mental health issues by medicating, counselling, and providing treatment.

    Staff Psychiatrist

    Staff psychiatrists operate in clinics and institutions that provide comprehensive psychiatric treatment and report to higher-level psychiatrists.

    Top Recruiters for Psychiatry Graduates

    Depending on the type of patient, psychiatrists might practice in a variety of settings. Some psychiatrists operate in private practice, which means they either own or rent an office space. Others may work in general or specialised psychiatric facilities. Moreover, individuals pursuing a profession in psychiatry in India work in a variety of settings some of which are mentioned below for aspirants aiming to be a psychiatrist:

    • Private and government hospitals 
    • Government and private clinics 
    • Forensic labs 
    • Psychiatry and brain hospitals
    • Nursing homes
    • Courts and prisons
    • Military setups 
    • Community centres
    • Mental health centres
    • Rehabilitation centres
    • Private and government universities and institutes

    Salary Trends of Psychiatry Graduates

    Examine the average starting annual salary of many psychiatry job opportunities mentioned below: 

    Job roles

    Average Annual Pay Range (in INR)

    Addiction Psychiatrist

    2-5 lakh 

    Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist

    4-14 lakh 

    Forensic Psychiatrist

    3-16 lakh 


    2.6-7 lakh 

    General Adult Psychiatrist

    3.5-15 lakh 

    Rehabilitation Psychiatrist

    3.5-8 lakh 


    3-17 lakh 

    Clinical Psychiatrist

    3.5-12 lakh

    Staff Psychiatrist

    2.5-6 lakh 

    Skills That Make You The Best Psychiatrist

    In addition to the theory knowledge studied when pursuing psychiatry courses, there are some skills to focus on to adapt to the mental working environment. Some of the most significant skillsets that a medical student or trainee doctor should strive to cultivate in order to excel in the area of psychiatry are listed below:

    • Communication skills
    • Ability to manage uncertainty
    • Dealing with difficult emotions
    • Broad understanding of illnesses
    • Logical reasoning
    • Perception
    • Sensitivity and empathy
    • Stress management
    • Problem-solving skills 

    FAQs about Psychiatrist

    What is the difference between psychotherapy and psychiatry?

    While both professions strive to improve clients' everyday functioning and results, psychotherapy focuses on talk therapy and behavioural therapies to alleviate emotional distress. Psychiatrists are medical professionals who have been educated to study biological as well as social and emotional issues. Some psychiatrists may include talking therapy and counselling in their treatment sessions or they may refer clients to CPA for concurrent psychotherapy sessions as part of the entire treatment plan

    What are the upcoming trends in the field of psychiatry?

    Psychiatry is leading the way in human welfare innovation, with top futuristic trends such as quicker diagnosis and early intervention of mental disorders, a wide range of genetic discoveries, the adoption of neuroplasticity, and the participation of pharmacogenomics in clinical practice.

    Are there any diploma courses available in India in the field of psychiatry study?

    Yes, there are plenty of diploma courses available online and offline in India in the field of psychiatry study. Aspirants can enrol in various diploma courses available including a diploma in psychiatric medicine (DPM), a diploma in clinical and community psychology, a diploma in psychiatry nursing, a diploma in counselling psychology, and a post-graduate diploma in psychiatry.

    In India, how long does it take to become a Psychiatrist?

    For most psychiatrists, it takes about or around 12 years to become a practicing psychiatrist. A bachelor's degree normally takes four years to complete, followed by four years of medical school and then four years of psychiatry residency and board certification.

    What is the qualification needed for becoming a psychiatrist in India?

    To fulfil medical school admissions qualifications as an aspiring psychiatrist, you will need to take Science in Class 12 with subjects - biology, chemistry, maths, and physics. Volunteering in a hospital is also suggested. To obtain a Doctor of Medicine, you must first attend medical school (MD). As a medical student, you will learn fundamental anatomy, physiology, and pathology through lectures and hands-on laboratories.

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