Cookie usage policy

The website of the University Carlos III of Madrid use its own cookies and third-party cookies to improve our services by analyzing their browsing habits. By continuing navigation, we understand that it accepts our cookie policy. "Usage rules"

Advanced Studies in Human Rights

  • Inicio


    Prof. Carlos Lema Añón


    About the program


    Quality research concerning the reality of human rights today requires a comprehensive analysis that broadens the knowledge frontiers and addresses the consideration of human rights as an ethical, open and plural expression, configured throughout history as the highest expression of the emancipating project of human beings.

    The variety of studies in this area requires a critical and methodological apparatus that the PhD program in Advanced Studies in Human Rights provides in a rigorous manner.

    The objectives of the program are:

    • Training new researchers and prepare research teams
    • Promoting the training of future teachers
    • Improving the professional, scientific, technical and artistic development of the graduates
    • Allowing the student's specialization within a scientific, technical, humanistic or artistic field
    • Providing tools for theoretical analysis of human rights from an interdisciplinary perspective, that is, basic criteria to be applied to practical issues related to rights in different areas


    • Program regulated by RD 99/2011, January 28

    Student profile

    Candidates must meet the requirements established by the applicable regulations. The program is mainly aimed at students with previous training in the fields of Law, Political Science, Sociology, History, Humanities or Philosophy. Priority will be given to students who have completed the official Master in Advanced Human Rights Studies at the Gregorio Peces-Barba Institute of Human Rights at Universidad Carlos III de Madrid.

    Proficiency in Spanish is required for candidates from non-Spanish speaking countries, as well as other language(s) skills, especially English, French, Italian, German.

    Admission requirements

    Bachelor's degree or equivalent (preferably in Law, Political Science, Sociology, History, Humanities, Philosophy or related areas), and a Master's degree or other postgraduate training in legal areas related to human rights (minimum 60 credits).

    Candidates with a previous postgraduate training in other areas may be admitted, provided that they meet the requirements of the applicable regulations for access to doctoral studies. These requirements must be approved by the Academic Committee of the program. In these cases, the Committee will determine the complementary training to be taken by the candidate (up to a maximum of 30 ECTS credits). For students with postgraduate training in other areas not related to the Law area, the Committee may set up a maximum of 40 ECTS credits of complementary training.

    Admission criteria


    Admission is determined according to the criteria set by the Academic Committee listed below. These are applied by the coordinator, who reports to said Committee on a regular basis. 

    Selection is based on merit and capacity of the candidates, for which the following aspects are considered:

    • Academic record of previous studies
    • Curriculum vitae of the candidate
    • Proof of level of English or other European languages
    • Endorsement letters from professors from the University or other institutions or organizations with direct knowledge of the capacity and competence of the candidate
    • Connection of the thesis project with the lines of research of the Ph.D. Program. The thesis project will be endorsed by a professor from the program
    • A personal interview with the candidate can be conducted if necessary, with at least one member of the Academic Committee being present

    The Academic Committee will determine the weight of these criteria: academic background and training (minimum 50%); interest and suitability of the thesis project for the lines of research of the program (minimum 30%).  



    Seats available for the academic year: 20




    In addition to the elaboration of the doctoral thesis, students must take some training aimed at complementing (if necessary) and improving their research skills as well as ensuring the scientific quality of their research work. This is structured in the following types of training.

    Specific training

    • Seminars hosted by the "Gregorio Peces-Barba" Institute of Human Rights: These are seminars by noted invited speakers on issues relevant to the different research areas pursued in the Program.
    • Ph.D. thesis seminars: These are seminars that facilitate the interaction between Ph.D. students and their supervisors and in which the students’ preliminary research results are debated.

    Research skills training

    Research skills training is focused on abilities common to all disciplines for the development of scientific and educational skills and the improvement of the professional career. This training consists of different activities (short courses, seminars, etc.), which can be recommended by the Academic Committee of the program.

    Further information:

    • Research Lines
      • Human Rights and Fundamental Rights
      • Jurisprudence and Philosophy of Law
      • Legal Sociology
      • Political History and Philosophy
      • Legal Reasoning
      • Professional Ethics and Deontology
      • Bioethics
      • Equality and non discrimination
      • Current Issues of International Economic Law and Economic cooperation and development
      • International Protection of Human Rights and vulnerable people
      • International Organizations, with Special Reference to the UN
      • Legal Instruments and Processes for Human Rights protection
      • Constitutional Justice
      • International Criminal Law
      • Transitional Justice
      • Human Rights and disability

      The lines of research of this Ph.D. Program are developed in the framework of the  "Gregorio Peces-Barba" Institute of Human Rights

    • Scientific results

      Sample of relevant publications derived from the work in doctoral tesis over the last five years:

      • Thesis: Derechos humanos y medio ambiente: el papel de los sistemas europeo e interamericano
        Author: Adriana Espinosa González
        Publication: Capítulo “El acceso a la justicia para víctimas de abusos corporativos, el caso del Delta del Níger”, en Fernández Liesa, C.; E. López Jacoiste, (ed.). Empresas y Derechos Humanos, Thomson Reuters Aranzadi (2018)
        Ranking position of publishing house:
        2/96 SPI-CSIC Law (ICEE 22,805)
        7/505 SPI-CSIC General (ICEE 34,803)
        2/25 Ministerio de Educación-Editors in Law, Public Administration and Social Assistance
        9/100 Publishers Scholar Metrics-Social Sciences, Humanities and Arts
      • Thesis: De la Justicia Judicial a la Justicia Comunitaria
        Author: Edgar Augusto Ardila Amaya
        Publication: Las fronteras judiciales en Colombia, Bogotá, Unijus Universidad Nacional De Colombia. ISBN: 978-958-783-448-2 (2018)
      • Thesis: El marco internacional, comparado y español de la pena de cadena perpetua
        Author: Tomás Cristóbal Alonso Sandoval
        Publication: La declaración americana y los derechos a la vida, seguridad e integridad personal de los privados de libertad. REIB, Vol 12 (2018)
      • Thesis: Hacia la emancipación de los aymaras, quechuas, kichuas, desde su paradigma identitario: Suma Qamaña, Sumak Kawsay
        Author: Yaneth Katia Apaza Huanca
        Publication: "Indio (denominación) = Indian (denomination)". Eunomía. Revista en Cultura de la legalidad: Madrid, Nº. 14, pp. 215-225. ISSN 2253-6655 (2018)
      • Thesis: La prevención de la tortura y el protocolo facultativo a la convención de Naciones Unidas contra la tortura y otros tratos o penas crueles, inhumanos o degradantes
        Author: Esther Pino Gamero
        Publication: La lucha contra la tortura en el Derecho Internacional de los Derechos Humanos y excusas contemporáneas para justificar la tortura. Centro de Estudios Constitucionales de la Suprema Corte de la Nación, Ciudad de México (México) (2017)
      • Thesis: Mujeres con discapacidad y situaciones de opresión. Deconstrucción feminista: desestabilizando las jerarquías de los dominios de poder.
        Author: María Laura Serra
        Publication: Monografía Mujeres con discapacidad: sobre la discriminación y opresión interseccional, Madrid, Ed. Dykinson (2017)
        Ranking position of publishing house:
        6/96 SPI-CSIC Law (ICEE 8.524)
        14/505 SPI-CSIC General 14/505 (ICEE 20.763)
        27/100 Publishers Scholar Metrics (Global index: 24.0, 6/36 Law)
      • Thesis: Los Derechos Fundamentales en México. La génesis y la protección de los Derechos
        Author: Ramón Gil Carreón Gallegos
        Publication: “La comprensión normativa y política de la Constitución mexicana de 1917. De la revolución de 1910 al Estado mexicano del siglo XXII”, en R. Montoya Zamora y R. A. Arroyo Cisneros, La Constitución de 1917. Cien años después, pp.107-132. Instituto de Investigaciones Jurídicas Universidad de Juárez. Editorial Laguna, Coahuila (2017)
      • Thesis: Hacia una única catalogación de los derechos fundamentales: Los derechos económicos, sociales y culturales de las personas con discapacidad como Derechos Fundamentales
        Author: Fernando Pindado García
        Publication: Hacia una catalogación de los derechos fundamentales – los derechos económicos, sociales y culturales de las personas con discapacidad como derechos fundamentales. Madrid, Ed. Cinca (2015)
        CERMI Award "Human Rights and Disability" 2015
    • Scientific publications

      This is a sample of relevant faculty publications:

      • Campoy Cervera, Ignacio. Book: La recepción y aplicación en España de la Convención de Naciones Unidas sobre los Derechos de las Personas con Discapacidad. Ediciones Laborum (2017)
      • Campoy Cervera, Ignacio. Book: En defensa del Estado de Derecho. Debilidades y fortalezas del Estado de Derecho a propósito de las críticas de Carl Schmitt. Colección Derechos Humanos y Filosofía del Derecho. Dykinson (2017)
      • Celador Angón, Oscar. Book: Orígenes histórico constitucionales del principio de laicidad.  Tirant lo Blanch (2017)
      • Fraile Ortiz, María. Book chapter: "La insoportable levedad de los derechos sociales", in Gordillo Pérez, L. I. (Coord.), Constitución española e integración europea. Treinta años de Derecho constitucional de la integración, Tirant lo Blanch (2017)
      • Lloredo Alix, Luis Manuel. Article: "Muertes y resurrecciones del positivismo jurídico. Una crisis de doscientos años de duración", in Doxa. Cuadernos de Filosofía del Derecho, nº 40, pp. 249-278 (2017)
      • Ribotta, Silvina Verónica. Article: “Defendiendo la igualdad de la objeción de nivelar a la baja”. Cuadernos Electrónicos de Filosofía del Derecho, N. 36, pp.149-168 (2017)
      • Rodríguez Palop, María Eugenia. Article: “Reformular los derechos humanos desde una visión relacional. El fin de la inmunidad y la autosuficiencia”. Derechos y Libertades, nº 36, pp.135-166 (2017)
      • Tamayo Acosta, Juan José. Book: Teologías del Sur. El giro descolonizador. Trotta (2017)
      • Vacas Fernández, Félix. Book: El Derecho Migratorio, Internacional y Europeo, como límite desde los derechos humanos a la discrecionalidad de los Estados en materia migratoria. Tirant lo Blanch (2017)
      • Barranco Avilés, María Carmen. Book: Condición humana y derechos humanos. Algunas claves filosóficas para un modelo contemporáneo de derechos. Dykinson (2016)
      • Cebada Romero, Alicia. Book chapter: “Religion-Based Legal Pluralism in Europe”, in Jean L. Cohen, C. Laborde (ed.). Religion, Secularism and Constitutional Democracy. Columbia University Press, pp. 498-514 (2016)
      • Manero Salvador, Ana María. Article: "La Unión Europea y los asentamientos israelíes en Palestina". Revista de Derecho Comunitario Europeo, Year 20, Nº 54, pp.595-628 (2016)
      • Quispe Remón, Florabel. Article: "La protección de los derechos humanos en el sistema interamericano: su evolución y una visión actual". Anuario español de derecho internacional, Nº 32, pp. 225-258 (2016)
      • Ramírez Barat, Clara. Article: “Education as a Form of Rehabilitation for Human Rights Violations”. International Human Rights Law Review 5(2), 1-33 (2016)
      • Ramírez Barat, Clara. Book: Transitional Justice and Education: Learning Peace. SSRC, New York (2016)
      • Ribotta, Silvina Verónica. Article: “Redistribución de recursos y derechos sociales. La tensión entre igualdad y prioridad”. Derechos y Libertades, N.35, pp.235-264 (2016)
      • Blázquez Martín, Diego. Article: "Clínicas de derechos humanos: Causas y ventajas del éxito de un modelo de educación jurídica del siglo XXI". Revista de Educación y Derecho, 11 (2014-2015)
      • Fariñas Dulce, María José. Book chapter: "Ajustes neoliberales al Constitucionalismo Social", in Ribotta, S. and Rosetti, A. (eds.). Los Derechos Sociales y su Exigibilidad. Libres de temor y miseria, pp.119-136. Dykinson (2015)
      • Fraile Ortiz, María. Book chapter: “La recepción de la doctrina del TEDH sobre la dignidad humana por los tribunales constitucionales”. Dignidad humana y derecho fundamental. Centro de Estudios Políticos y Constitucionales, Madrid, p. 235-276 (2015)
      • Lema Añón, Carlos. Article: “La reciprocidad indirecta y las generaciones futuras”. Anuario de Filosofía del Derecho, nº XXXI, pp. 203-226 (2015)
      • Pérez Tremps, Pablo Enrique Ángel. Book: El recurso de amparo. Tirant lo Blanch (2015)
      • Rodríguez Uribes, José Manuel. Book: Gregorio Peces-Barba, justicia y derecho: (la utopía posible). Aranzadi. ISBN 978-84-470-5075-8 (2015)
      • Vacas Fernández, Félix. Book: El Derecho Internacional ante el conflicto de Colombia. Tirant lo Blanch (2015)
      • Ansuategui Roig, F.J. Book: Rivendicando i diritti social. Edizioni Scientifiche Italiane (2014)
      • De Asís Roig, Rafael Fernando. Book: Una mirada a la robótica desde los derechos humanos. Dykinson (2014)
      • Celador Angón, Oscar. Book: Libertad de conciencia y escuela en Estados Unidos. Dykinson (2014)
      • Escudero Alday, Rafael. Article: "Road to Impunity. The Absence of Transitional Justice Programs in Spain". Human Rights Quarterly, nº 36, pp. 123-146 (2014)
      • Fariñas Dulce, María José. Book: Democracia y Pluralismo: Una mirada hacia la emancipación. Dykinson (2014)
      • Fernández Liesa, Carlos Ramón. Book: La guerra civil y el Derecho internacional. Thomson Reuters (2014)
      • Llamas Cascón, Ángel. Book chapter: "La literatura en la enseñanza de los derechos humanos". Derechos, cine, literatura y cómics: cómo y por qué, pp.45-62, Dykinson (2014)
      • Ramiro Avilés, Miguel Ángel. Article: “Compensation of research-related injuries in the European Union”. European Journal of Health Law, 21:4, pp. 473-487 (2014)
      • Tamayo Acosta, Juan José. Book: Islam. Sociedad, política y feminismo. Dykinson (2014)
      • Zapatero Miguel, Pablo. Article: "La transformación del Estado en un nicho de mercado: Disciplinas globales de la contratación pública". Revista electrónica de estudios internacionales (REEI), Nº. 27, 19 pages (2014)
      • Álvarez García, Francisco Javier. Book: Tratado de derecho penal español: Parte especial. III, Delitos contra las administraciones pública y de justicia. Tirant lo Blanch (2013)
      • Ansuategui Roig, Francisco Javier. Book: Razón y voluntad en el Estado de Derecho. Un enfoque filosófico-jurídico. Dykinson (2013)
      • De Asís Roig, Rafael Fernando. Book: Sobre discapacidad y derechos. Dykinson (2013)
      • Blázquez Martín, Diego. Book: El movimiento global de Clínicas Jurídicas: formando juristas en la justicia. Tirant Lo Blanch (2013)
      • Cebada Romero, Alicia. Article: "El Derecho internacional global: una retórica útil para una transformación necesaria”. Revista Española de Derecho Internacional, Vol. 65, nº 1, p.15-42 (2013)
      • Dorado Porras, Javier. Book chapter: “Justicia Transicional”, en Peces-Barba, G. (et al), Historia de Los Derechos Fundamentales. Siglo XX, Vol. 4.4, pp.647-745. Dykinson (2013)
      • Elvira Perales, Ascensión. Article: "Transexualidad y derechos". Revista general de derecho constitucional, Nº. 17 (2013)
      • Escudero Alday, Rafael. Book: Modelos de democracia en España. 1931-1978. Península (2013)
      • Fernández Liesa, Carlos Ramón. Book: El derecho internacional de los derechos humanos en perspectiva histórica. Thomson Reuters (2013)
      • Oliva Martínez, Juan Daniel. Book: El Derecho Internacional y la cooperación frente a los desastres en materia de Protección Civil (co-author: Carlos Fernández Liesa). Ministerio del Interior, Madrid (2013)
      • Pérez Tremps, Pablo Enrique Ángel. Book: Sistema de Justicia Constitucional. Civitas (2013)
      • Rodríguez Palop, María Eugenia. Book chapter: "El surgimiento de la nueva generación de derechos humanos como fruto de una crisis democrática y social”. Historia de los derechos fundamentales S. XX, IV, Vol.VI. Book I: Los derechos económicos, sociales y culturales, pp.225-277. Dykinson (2013)
      • Rodríguez Uribes, José Manuel. Book: Las víctimas del terrorismo en España. Dykinson (2013)
      • Zapatero Miguel, Pablo. Article: "World policy battles on pharmaceutical patent protection: micro-history of a forum shift and its legal implications". Cuadernos de derecho transnacional, Vol. 5, Nº. 1, pp. 217-228 (2013)
      • Álvarez García, Francisco Javier. Article: "La protección penal del patrimonio cultural en la Constitución Española (presupuestos constitucionales a la protección penal del Patrimonio Histórico)". Revista de Derecho Penal, Nº. 35, pp. 35-65 (2012)
      • Barranco Avilés, María Carmen. Article: “Constitución, derechos humanos y filosofía del derecho: una teoría de la justicia para el constitucionalismo contemporáneo”. Anuario de Filosofía del Derecho, nº 28, pp.13-31 (2012)
      • Dorado Porras, Javier. Book chapter: “Reparaciones a las víctimas de violaciones graves de los derechos humanos constitutivas de delitos de genocidio, lesa humanidad y/o crímenes de guerra”, in Olásolo, H. and Cuenca, S. (eds.), Perspectiva Iberoamericana sobre la Justicia Penal Internacional, pp.267-278. Tirant Lo Blanch (2012)
      • Elvira Perales, Ascensión. Book chapter: "El derecho a la investigación científica en el marco de la Unión Europea", en La investigación científica como derecho fundamental, Ricardo Luis Chueca Rodríguez (dir.), pp. 69-100 (2012)
      • Lema Añón, Carlos. Book: Apogeo y crisis de la ciudadanía de la salud. Historia del derecho a la salud en el siglo XX. Dykinson (2012)
      • Lloredo Alix, Luis Manuel. Book: Rudolf von Jhering y el paradigma positivista. Fundamentos ideológicos y filosóficos de su pensamiento jurídico. Dykinson (2012)
      • Manero Salvador, Ana María. Article: "Colombia y la responsabilidad internacional por desapariciones forzadas". Anuario español de derecho internacional, Nº 28, pp. 105-141 (2012)
      • Oliva Martínez, Juan Daniel. Book: Los Pueblos Indígenas a la conquista de sus derechos: Fundamentos, contextos de formación y normas de Derecho Internacional. BOE-UC3M, Madrid (2012)
      • Pérez de la Fuente, Oscar. Article: "Qué democracia(s)". Co-herencia, vol. 9, nº.16, pp. 53-79 (2012)
      • Pérez de la Fuente, Oscar. Article: "Delitos culturalmente motivados. Diversidad cultural, Derecho e inmigración". European Journal of Legal Studies, vol. 5, nº.1, pp. 65-95 (2012)
      • Quispe Remón, Florabel. Article: "Los derechos humanos como límite a la voluntad popular: el caso Gelman". Revista española de derecho internacional, Vol. 64, Nº 1, pp.243-247 (2012)
      • Ramiro Avilés, Miguel Ángel. Book: Utopian Moments. Bloomsbury, London (2012)



    Thesis defense


    The doctoral thesis consists of an original research work developed by the Ph.D. candidate student in the field of knowledge of the program that enables the student for autonomous work in the field of R+D+ i.

    Universidad Carlos III de Madrid and the Doctoral School establishes the follow-up procedures to guarantee the quality of the doctorate's training and supervision. It also facilitates the procedures for the proper evaluation and defense of the doctoral thesis.


    Further information:

    • Overview
      Información Práctica de los Estudios de Doctorado


      Our Ph.D. programs focus on the acquisition of skills and abilities required to undertake high-quality research work within the strategic framework and lines of research of the university. Students will be expected to work independently under supervision and guidance of top experts in their fields in order to produce novel, groundbreaking research work in the form of a dissertation.

      The Ph.D. thesis constitutes the expected outcome of the doctoral training, stating the specifics of the research work and results. The thesis must meet the high-quality standards required by the Ph.D. program and be subject to public defense and assessment by an independent thesis committee.

      A favorable assessment of the thesis enables Ph.D. students to request their official Ph.D. degree certificate, issued by the Spanish Ministerio de Educación, Cultura y Deporte.


      Doctoral training calendar 

      Duration of the academic year: October 1st through September 30th

      Process Period
      Admission According to the start semester of the PhD:

      Second semester of the 23/24 academic year
      Admission application deadline: September 1st 2023 through January 31st 2024 (23:59 h., CET) 
      PhD start date: March 30th 2024

      First semester of the 24/25 academic year
      Admission application deadline: February 1st through August 31st 2024 (23:59 h., CET) 
      PhD start date: November 15th 2024
      Enrollment According to the start semester of the PhD:

      Enrollment period for new students
      First semester: July 24th through 30th and September 1st through 30th (23:59 h., CET) of the current academic year
      Second semester: March 1st through 30th (23:59 h., CET) of the current academic year

      Enrollment period for continuing students
      September 1st through 30th (23:59 h., CET) of the current academic year
      Annual Assessment  June
      All PhD candidates are subject to annual evaluation.

      Only students whose June evaluation was unfavorable are subject to evaluation. 

      In both cases the evaluation is based on the progress of the thesis project (Reseach Plan) and the doctoral activities carried out during the academic year.
      Thesis Defense Thesis defense can be carried out throughout the academic year.
    • Procedures
    • FAQ

      Ph.D. Studies

      Parque de las Moreras

      What is a Ph.D.?

      A Ph.D. is a period of training in skills and abilities required to undertake independent, high-quality research work in the realm of R&D under the supervision of top experts in their respective fields.

      What are the terms of access to a Ph.D. program?

      As a general rule, candidates are required to hold a Bachelor’s and a Master’s degree. Credits for both must amount to at least 300 ECTS credits.

      Additionally, specific requirements and candidate profiles are described in each program’s terms of access. Before applying for admission, it is strongly recommended to take the  Ph.D. Programs into consideration, as well as its lines of research, profiles of the scholars involved and final results (theses and scientific publications) as proof of the program’s quality and specialization.

      Shat is the duration of a Ph.D.?

      The regular duration of a full-time Ph.D. program is 4 years. This period can be extended up to 5 years.

      The regular duration of a part-time Ph.D. program is 7 years. This period can be extended up to 8 years. 

      You may apply, for justified reasons, for either an extension or a leave of absence from your Ph.D. training period to the Academic Committee of your program. Your request must be endorsed by your tutor/advisor. Further information:  Duration of Ph.D. studies

      Can I do my Ph.D. entirely online?

      No. All Ph.D. Programs require some face-to-face activity throughout the training period. The duration of face-to-face activity is established by each Program.

      How can I apply for a part-time enrollment status?

      You can state your part-time enrollment status upon admission or, once you have initiated your training period, by submitting a request for justified reasons to the Academic Committee of your program. Your request must be endorsed by your tutor/advisor. Further information:  Enrollment status for Ph.D. studies

      If you are the recipient of a pre-doctoral contract with the UC3M, you must be a full-time student for the entire duration of the contract in application of article 21 of Law 14/2011, of  the1st of June, on Science, Technology and Innovation.

      Must I take any other training in addition to my research work?

      Yes. There are three different types of additional training to be taken during your Ph.D.:

      • Complementary training. Applicable only to students whose terms of admission state this training as required.
      • Specific training. Activities within the framework of your Ph.D. program.
      • Research Skills training. Courses or activities focused on abilities common to all disciplines (communication, academic writing, stress management, etc.).

      Further information on Doctoral Training: Monitoring and Development of these FAQ.

      A favorable assessment enables students to apply for their official Ph.D. degree certificate issued by the Spanish Ministerio de Educación, Cultura y Deporte. An additional Doctorado Internacional distinction is awarded to students who met a number of specific requirements during their training period.

      What is an Interuniversity Ph.D.?

      Interuniversity PhDs are joint degree programs by Universidad Carlos III de Madrid in collaboration with other Spanish or international institutions. The outcome of these programs does not translate into multiple degrees but just one equivalent to the training undertaken by the student.


      How can I apply for admission to a Ph.D. program?

      Your application for admission must be submitted online. Signing in is previously required in order to get your login and password. Further information on how to carry out this process:  Apply for admission

      I have not completed my Master’s degree yet. May I apply for admission now?

      Yes. However, in the event of a favorable resolution of admission, it will be conditioned to your Master’s degree completion.

      When can I apply for admission?

      Applications for admission for the first semester of the 24/25 academic year with start date on the 15th of November 2024 can be submitted from February 1st through August 31st 2024 (Spanish peninsular time, CET)*

      Applications for admission for the second semester of the 24/25 academic year with start date on the 30th of March 2025 can be submitted from September 1st 2024 through January 31st 2025 (Spanish peninsular time, CET)*.

      *Except where noted in the details of each Ph.D. Program.

      The PhD academic year begins on October 1st and ends on September 30th. 

      What documents do I need to submit?

      Scan in advance, in pdf format, the documentation requirements to be attached to your application. The documents listed below are mandatory in all cases:

      • National Identity Document: DNI, NIE, or passport
      • Previous degree certificate or diploma (Master’s degree or equivalent), or proof of payment of issuance fees. 
      • Academic transcript of previous degree (Bachelor's and Master’s degree or equivalent), including grades
      • Curriculum Vitae
      • Authorization of disclosure of educational and employment information
      • Ph.D. research proposal
      • Endorsement for thesis project

      Some programs may require additional documents, such as reference letters by notable researchers, foreign language skills certificate, etc.

      Can I choose when to start my doctoral training?

      Yes. As a new student, you must state in your application for admission whether you want to start your training in the first semester (November 15) or second semester (March 30).

      I want to apply for a scholarship or financial aid program. Must I do it before or after applying for admission to a Ph.D.?

      It is strongly recommended to apply first for your Ph.D. program of choice at uc3m, as most of the granting institutions require proof of admission (or application for admission) to a Ph.D.

      Further information on Scholarships and Financial Aid Programs of these FAQ.

      I submitted my application. When will I know if I am admitted?

      The review process of your application consists of two stages:

      • Administrative validation. Your application will be reviewed at the Doctoral School Office on campus to ensure that it meets the admission requirements. You will be contacted if necessary.
      • Academic evaluation. If your application has succesfully passed the previous stage, it will be forwarded to the Academic Committee of the Ph.D. program for review. You will be notified of the Committee's decision by certified mail sent to the postal address provided in your application.

      This process may take up to one-two months. You will be notified of the Committee’s resolution by e-mail.

      I have been admitted. When must I submit my enrollment form?

      In you are admitted to a Ph.D. program, you have to submit your online application for enrollment in the periods set by the university to that effect, according to the instructions indicated in your letter of admission, our website or the Enrollment section of this FAQ, including the payment of tuition fees. If you do not submit your enrollment for the academic year for which you were admitted, your admission will be cancelled.

      Doctoral training scholarships. Exemptions

      Campus Getafe

      What types of financial aid programs can I apply for?

      There is a wide variety of financial aid programs for doctoral training that cover partial or total tuition fees and, in some cases, allow uc3m to formally hire the Ph.D. student as a training researcher.

      Who are the awarding bodies?

      Here is a list of the most common scholarship and financial aid programs:

         - Formación de Investigadores del Ministerio de Innovación / Researchers Training by Ministerio de Innovación (formerly known as FPI scholarships)
         - Formación de Profesorado Universitario del Ministerio de Educación / University Faculty Training by Ministerio de Educación (formerly known as FPU scholarships)
         - Researchers Training by Universidad Carlos III de Madrid, awarded by the institution departments
         - Ph.D. Scholarships by La Caixa
         - Ph.D. Scholarships by Comunidades Autónomas (Autonomous Regions of Spain)
         - Scholarships by Fundación Carolina (for Latin American students)

      Further information:  Doctoral Training Scholarships

      When and how can I apply for these?

      Each granting body has its own application and awarding periods. It is strongly recommended to apply first for your Ph.D. program of choice at uc3m in all cases, as most of these institutions require proof of admission (or application for admission) to a Ph.D.


      Do I have to be admitted to a Ph.D. in order to apply for admission?

      It is not required in most cases, but, as pointed out previously, you must have at least submitted your application for admission in order to be eligible (check the awarding institution’s specific terms). Only if you are eventually granted the scholarship or financial aid will it be required to be admitted and enrolled on the program in order to accept the aid and be hired as a training researcher at uc3m.


      I received a scholarship or financial aid. Do I have to notify uc3m?

      Yes. As a recipient of any financial aids, it is recommended to notify the university for these to be applied upon enrollment. If your scholarship status is not registered in your self-enrollment application, please contact the Doctoral School Office, either in person or by e-mail at


      Where will I undertake my Ph.D. research work?

      Your research and teaching activities (when applicable) will be carried out at the department or Institute stated in your contract within the framework of your Ph.D. program under the supervision of the tutor and advisor(s) appointed by the Academic Committee.

      Who is in charge of managing my scholarship or financial aid program?

      Granting institutions usually delegate on uc3m the management of these aids according to the terms originally established by those and our own rules and regulations.


      Who is to evaluate the progress and outcomes of my research work?

      All our Ph.D. students must submit the progress of their research work for evaluation by the Academic Committee of their Ph.D. program. Recipients of any financial aid program must also provide this information to the granting body.


      Are there any other tuition fees exemptions?

      Yes. As a new student, if you are eligible for any of the following exemptions or discounts recognized by the Spanish administration, you must submit certified copies of the pertinent documents to the Postgraduate Office on campus before enrollment proceedings so that these exemptions apply upon enrollment.

      • Large Family status: Certified copy of the Large Family status card (general or special)
      • Disability: Certified copy of Disability Identification card (minimum 33% disability)
      • Other: Certified copy of proof of exemption for victims of terrorist attacks (including their spouses and children) or children of civil and military servants who perished in the line of duty.

      These documents must be valid for the academic year for which the exemption is requested.


      How to enroll

      Our Ph.D. Management platform allows to process your enrollment online. To access the platform, enter your UC3M username and password.

      When to enroll               

      New students can choose the start date of the Ph.D. studies. Enrollment period varies accordingly:

      Students starting first semester:

      • Enrollment period: July 24 through 30 and September 1st through 30th (23:59 h., Peninsular Spanish time)
      • Start date of Ph.D. training: November 15 

      Students starting second semester*:

      • Enrollment period: March 1st through 30th (23:59 h., Peninsular Spanish time)
      • Start date of Ph.D. training: March 30

      *In these cases, students benefit from a reduced tuition fee, applicable only for first-year enrollment.

      Your start date will determine the length of your Ph.D. training period.

      As a continuing student, the enrollment period is September 1st through 30th (23:59 h., Peninsular Spanish time) of each academic year.

      What modules should I register on my application?

      You must select the following modules of your enrollment application:

      • Ph.D. Monitoring for your doctoral training year. 

      Required in all cases. It will be registered by default in your application. 

      • Complementary credits.

      Only applicable if the Academic Committee of your program established these credits as obligatory in its admission resolution, in which case you have been properly notified in your admission letter. These credits will be registered by default in your application.

      Other activities of your doctoral training may not require enrollment. If so, our Doctoral School Office is in charge of the registration process:

      • Specific training: Activities included in the curriculum of your Ph.D. program. 
      • Research Skills training: Only required for students of some Ph.D. programs.  

      What are the costs of tuition fees?

      These are the tuition fees for all your Ph.D. training:

      1. Academic fees

      Academic monitoring of Ph.D. training year.  

      • Ordinary fee (full-time, starting first semester): 390 €.
      • Reduced fee* (full-time, starting second semester): 234 €.
      • Reduced fee (part-time, starting first or second semester): 234 €.

                  *Full fees will apply in subsequent years.

      Training credits

      • Complementary training (only for students who are required to take these credits as established in their resolution of admission). If the subjects are the same as subjects from an official degree, the price will be the same as in the original degree. The prices range from € 45,02 to € 80-150 €, depending on the master's program and the doctoral year of enrollment (first, second or subsequent).
      • Research Skills training courses. 45,02 € per credit. Credits from other institutions also require an enrollment at UC3M . A reduced 25% fee will apply in these cases (11,25 € per credit).

      Thesis defense. 143,15 €

      Ph.D. Degree Certificate. 229,86 €

      1. Administrative fees
      • Registrar’s Office expenses. 6,11 €
      • Academic record proceedings (first-year students only). 27,54 €
      1. School insurance. 1, 12 €. Applicable to Spanish or international students (legal residents) under 28 years of age.

      Students who fail to fulfill the payment of these fees will be dismissed from the Ph.D. program.

      Further information:  Tuition fees

      How do I validate my first-year enrollment?

      Upon completion and payment of your enrollment, the Doctoral School will get in touch with you and set an appointment to provide the original documents to have your enrollment validated in compliance with the access requirements to Ph.D.


      According to your previous studies, the documents to be submitted are listed below: 

      1. If you have taken an official Master's degree at UC3M, you are not required to submit any documents. The Doctoral School will check your records accordingly.

      2. If your access degree for Ph.D. was issued by a University from Spain or a European Union country, or a state of the European Economic Area or Switzerland, it is required to provide the following original documents: 

      • Access degree certificate for Ph.D. (Master's degree or equivalent) or payment receipt of issuance fees.
      • Grades certificate of access degree to Ph.D. (Master's degree or equivalent).

      3. If your access degree for Ph.D. was issued by a University from a country other than the ones indicated above, it is required to provide the following legalized documents:

      • Access degree certificate for Ph.D. (Master's degree or equivalent) or payment receipt of issuance fees.
      • Grades certificate of access degree to Ph.D. (Master's degree or equivalent).

      There are different ways to have your documents legalized. Find which legalization procedure applies in your case:  Legalization of Foreign Degrees

      Please note that the legalization procedure must be carried out from the home country. It is strongly recommended to do it in advance. 

      Original hard copies of the documents must be provided along with their photocopies. The Doctoral School will check both originals and their copies and have them certified. If the degree certificates and documents have an electronic signature or digital certification (with safe verification codes), these will be submitted by e-mail at

      All documents must be submitted in Spanish, English, French, Italian or Portuguese (certificates and degrees provided in other languages must have attached an official Spanish translation).  

      The submission period will be notified by e-mail within a month after the end of the enrollment period.

      What are my rights and obligations as a uc3m student?

      Please refer to the following documentation issued by the regional authorities and uc3m. All of them apply to Ph.D. candidates at Uc3m.

      • Students Statute of the Region of Madrid (Estatuto del estudiante de la Comunidad de Madrid)
      • uc3m students Rights and Obligations (Carta de los derechos y deberes del estudiante en la uc3m)
      • Rules and Regulations of the Doctoral School at uc3m (Reglamento de la Escuela de Doctorado de la uc3m)
      • Good Practices of the Doctoral School at uc3m (Código de buenas prácticas de la Escuela de Doctorado de la uc3m)

      Additionally, you have access to the university's support services to students and researchers.

      Further information:  Rules and Regulations

      Ph.D. Studies: Monitoring and Development

      Biblioteca María Moliner

      How are my Ph.D. supervisors appointed?

      Ph.D. tutors and advisors are advanced members of the uc3m faculty or other research institutions who serve as mentors of your research work and keep track of your progress. They also facilitate your communication with the Academic Committee of the program.

      Tutors are appointed by the Committee upon your admission. Tutors must hold a Ph.D. degree and have ties with the program, as well as a proven track record in research of at least six years (or proof of equivalent qualifications).

      The Committee will also appoint an advisor within three months from initial enrollment on the program. Thesis advisors must hold a Ph.D. degree and have a proven track record in research of at least six years (or equivalent qualifications), as well as specific research experience in the field of your thesis. Advisors' may be based at any university, center or institute in Spain or abroad. A professor may be appointed as both tutor and advisor of a Ph.D. student.

      The Academic Committee may change these designations throughout your doctoral training period for justified reasons.

      Must I take any other training in addition to my research work?

      Yes. There are three different types of additional training to be taken during your Ph.D.:

      • Complementary training. Maximum: 40 ECTS credits. Applicable only to students whose terms of admission state this training as required. The Academic Committee will determine the credit-based courses or subjects in the admission resolution. As a general rule, this training must be taken during the first year.
      • Specific training. Students are also expected to participate in a number of activities relevant to their field of research: seminars, meetings, conferences, courses, etc. These activities may require prior enrollment at uc3m. Your tutor or advisor will confirm the contents of your specific training program.
      • Research Skills training. Some Ph.D. programs at uc3m require training in research skills focused on abilities common to all disciplines (communication, academic writing, stress management, etc.). These credits can be earned at either uc3m or other institutions and require formal enrollment at uc3m in all cases, as well as the approval of your tutor or advisor.

      How is the progress of my research evaluated?

      The Academic Committee of your program will evaluate the progress of your research project and activity report on an annual basis in the month of June. Grounds for evaluation are to be registered in the following documents:

      • Research Plan. Not to be mistaken for the research proposal submitted when applying for admission. As a new Ph.D. student, you must elaborate an initial Research Plan within the first year of your doctoral training period. This plan will serve as a tracking tool of your project, listing the objectives and methodology of your research as well as a comprehensible timeline stating the periods estimated for the achievement of each goal. It must have attached your tutor or advisor's evaluation report in order to be submitted for assessment to the Academic Committee of your program.

      An annual update of this Plan must be submitted in subsequent years, with the corresponding tutor or advisor’s evaluation report, so that all parties involved in your doctoral training can track and assess your progress.

      • Activity Report. In addition to your Research Plan (initial or updated), it is also required to register any activity relevant to your Ph.D. research: courses, seminars, meetings, conventions, publications, international fellowship programs, etc. Be sure to have attached all certificates and/or work papers as proof of completion.

      In the event of an unfavorable assessment by the Academic Committee, you will be subjected to evaluation again in December.


      Can I join an international research visit program?

      Yes. Undertaking a period of research abroad is a requirement for Doctorado Internacional distinction eligibility. Among other requirements, your visit must have a minimum duration of three months; also, the report of activities and outcomes of your research at the host institution must be written and presented in one of the languages used for scientific dissemination in your field of research (different from any of Spain’s official languages). Prior approval by your tutor/advisor and the Academic Committee of your program is required. The Committee will evaluate your visiting research reports and, if approved, submit your candidacy for the Doctorado Internacional distinction to the Doctoral School Board.

      Thesis defense

      Biblioteca Carmen Martin Gaite

      What is a Ph.D. thesis?

      The Ph.D. thesis is the intended outcome of the doctoral training period. The thesis must give account of the student’s scientific work and meet the quality standards established by the Academic Committee of the program. Theses are defended in a public dissertation event, where they are subjected to assessment by an expert committee.

      As a general rule, Ph.D. candidates must have been enrolled on their program for a minimum period of 24 months before initiating thesis defense proceedings.

      I have approval to proceed to the thesis defense. What are the stages of this process?

      Once you get approval for your thesis defense by your tutor, advisor and Academic Committee, a minimum span of 8 weeks (excluding holiday periods) is usually required to go through these stages:

      1. Plagiarism management procedure
      2. Thesis deposit. Three weeks.
      3. Approval of thesis defense and appointment of Thesis Committee by the Dean of Doctoral School. One week.
      4. Defense session logistics. Three weeks.
      5. Thesis defense

      What is the plagiarism management procedure?

      To ensure compliance with the principles established in the Code of Good Practice for Managing Plagiarism of Ph.D. Theses of the Doctoral School, all theses must be subjected to a plagiarism management procedure prior to the authorization of the defense.

      Once the Academic Committee of your Ph.D. program determines that your research period is done and your thesis is ready for deposit, a pdf file of the thesis will be submitted to the Doctoral School to proceed to the plagiarism management.

      The results of this study will be at the disposal of the members of the thesis committee, should they be requested.

      Further information:  Plagiarism management

      What is the thesis deposit?

      The deposit of your thesis enables UC3M professors and scholars of your field to review your work before the defense. The deposit period is 15 days (excluding August), after which all comments and observations by the experts will be reported to the Academic Committee and yourself. 

      Further information:  Thesis deposit

      Who approves the defense?

      Once your thesis has successfully passed both stages, the Academic Committee of the program will elaborate their proposal for thesis defense, providing details of the proposed members of the Thesis Committee on the Authorization of thesis defense and appointment of Thesis Committee. Eligibility for “Doctorado Internacional”, “Doctorado Industrial” or International Cotutelle must be indicated, where applicable.

      This proposal will be submitted for the Dean of the Doctoral School's approval of the thesis defense and the appointment of Thesis Committee members.

      Who can be a member of the Thesis Committee?

      The Thesis Committee consists of three members (President, Secretary, and a spokesperson) and a substitute. All of them must hold a Ph.D. degree and a proven track record in research. In all cases, the Committee will be formed by a majority of members external to the University and to the institutions collaborating with the School or the Ph.D. Program.

      Further information:  Defense session. Appointment of Committee members

      How is the thesis defense organized?

      Once all authorizations are signed, the Thesis Committee’s Secretary will appoint a date for the defense. The Doctoral School Office on campus will be in charge of the logistics of the event (room reservations, technical equipment, etc.) and the travel procedures of the committee members, when applicable.

      Additionally, the Postgraduate Office will submit a digital copy of the thesis to each member of the Thesis Committee at least 15 days prior to the defense session. This file will contain any allegation or comment submitted by the experts during the deposit period.

      Further information:  Defense session. Appointment of Committee members

      Do I have to pay any fees before the defense?

      Yes. The payment of thesis defense fees must be fulfilled before proceeding to defense. Additionally, payment of enrollment fees for the academic year in which the defense takes place must be up to date.

      How is my thesis assessed?

      All Committee members must receive a copy of the thesis 15 days prior to the defense event.

      Once the Ph.D. candidate completes his/her dissertation, the Committee can provide feedback or pose questions. Their global assessment will be given in terms of Fail (No Apto), Pass (Aprobado), Good (Notable) or Excellent (Sobresaliente).

      Theses with an Excellent (Sobresaliente) grade are eligible for the cum laude distinction. The committee members will subsequently cast their votes via separate secret ballot in closed session. Only if all votes are favorable will the committee submit their proposal for the thesis to be awarded the cum laude distinction to the university Chancellor. In this case, each member of the committee will finally cast their vote, anonymously and in a sealed envelope, for the thesis to be considered for the Outstanding Thesis Award by Universidad Carlos III de Madrid.

      How can I apply for my Ph.D. certificate?

      Your application for the official Ph.D. degree certificate and the payment of the corresponding fees is done online.

      Issuance of your certificate may take a few months. Until then, you may apply for a temporary certificate as proof of completion of your Ph.D. studies as of the date of your thesis defense.

      Where is my Ph.D. thesis published?

      Your thesis will be published in e-archivo, the open online repository of Universidad Carlos III de Madrid, and Teseo the Ph.D. database managed by the Ministry of Universities. In the event of partial or temporary restrictions pertaining to the publication of your thesis, you must report them to the university.

      Glossary of terms

      Ph.D. Program. Array of training and activities oriented to the acquisition of abilities required to undertake autonomous research work in the realm of R&D. Each Ph.D. program establishes their own procedures and lines of research for the development of theses within the framework of their respective fields.

      Academic Committee. The coordinator/director of the program and two other Ph.D. members constitute a program's Academic Committee, the body in charge of the various training areas and research progress of the program, as well as the authorization of thesis defense of their Ph.D. candidates.

      Doctoral School. Academic body in charge of the management and coordination of all Ph.D. programs.

      Ph.D. Thesis. Original piece of research carried out by Ph.D. candidates in their field of knowledge. Presented as a written dissertation according to the quality, content and format guidelines set by the Ph.D. program for its public defense.

      Tutor. Supervisor in charge of tracking the training progress of the Ph.D. candidate and serving as a communication link between the researcher and the Academic Committee. Tutors must be attached to uc3m faculty with a proven research track record. Tutors are appointed upon approval of admission by the Academic Committee.

      Thesis advisor. Supervisor in charge of tracking the training progress of the Ph.D. candidate. Advisors are experts in the field of the Ph.D. candidate's research, not necessarily attached to uc3m faculty (if they are, they can also be appointed as tutors). Advisors are appointed within the first three months of the student's Ph.D. training period. A student may have more than one advisor.

      Specific training. Specific activities pertaining to the field of research of each Ph.D., designed to provide students with the knowleddge and opportunity for debate required for the development of their research work: seminars, meetings, conferences/dissertations, international research visits, etc.

      Research Skills training. Training activities oriented to the acquisition of skills common to all disciplines. All students are required to earn at least 6 credits (60 hours) throughout their doctoral training period. Enrollment on these courses is performed separately from their regular doctoral training.

      Complementary training. Maximum 40 ECTS credits. Training that the Academic Committee may deem necessary in their admission resoluction in order to complement the Ph.D. candidate's previous academic background. Enrollment on these credits will be required in addition to the student's regular doctoral training. These credits are usually earned during the first Ph.D. year. 

      Research plan. Document to be drafted within the first six months of Ph.D. training detailing the student’s research project to be subjected to annual evaluation every month of June. It must be approved by the tutor, the thesis advisor and the Academic Committee. This plan must be updated and submitted for review and evaluation purposes on a yearly basis.

      Ph.D. Activity report. A registration account of all training activities pertaining to the Ph.D. student's research. The tutor and thesis advisor must endorse these activities for them to be submitted to the Academic Committee for annual evaluation in June. 

      Student record. Academic details of every Ph.D. student as registered in uc3m databases, including activities and credits completed. This information is to be attached to the thesis in the final stages of defense approval.

      Academic transcript. Official document signed by the Head of Doctoral Studies certifying a student's academic record.

      Monitoring and assessment. Annual process by which the research progress and activities of a Ph.D. candidate are subjected to evaluation by the Academic Committee.

      Written Agreement. Document signed by all parties involved in a thesis research project (Ph.D. student, tutor, advisor/s, and Academic Committee) stating their roles and specific conditions pertaining to confidentiality agreements, copyright or use and distribution of research outcomes, where applicable, as well as conflict resolution procedures.

      Thesis public review. Procedure required to allow the academic community to review the student's thesis and issue comments and observations prior to the defense. The thesis is usually deposited at the university's intranet.

      Thesis defense. Academic event open to the public in which Ph.D. candidates defend their research work before a committee of experts in their field. The defense is followed by a question and answer session led by the defense committee in order for it to give their assessment.

      Defense committee. Committee consisting of three experts with proven track records of research in the field of the thesis, most of which must be based outside uc3m. The committee gives their assessment of the thesis and awards the cum laude distinction and the Outstanding Thesis Award candidacy, where applicable.

    • Itinerary
      Itinerario Estudiante de Doctorado
    • Regulations
    • Quality


      Implementation Year: 2012-2013


      The Academic Committee of the Ph.D. complies with the SGIC-UC3M. It is responsible for the quality analysis of the program and produces the Degree Reports ("Memoria Académica de Titulación").



    Bienvenida Universidad Carlos III de Madrid

    Doctoral School Office | Getafe Campus

    Carmen Martín Gaite Building, Office 18.0.A15
    C/ Madrid, 135
    28903 Getafe (Madrid)