This paper presents a part of the findings from a larger study undertaken to explore the experience of graduate students in education in Pakistan. Analysis of a smaller slice of data collected from students who were enrolled in the PhD and MPhil programmes of the Department of Education in a large public sector university in Northern Pakistan was undertaken. The purpose was to develop understanding of their experience of the programme, with a specific focus on induction and coursework. The findings illustrate that students perceive and experience the PhD as a professional degree rather than a research degree. It also appears that the doctoral programme and policies are both in evolution and will require time and effort to mature. Sustained and continuous effort is required to develop among the students the identity of a doctoral student as someone who “creates” new knowledge.