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    Director: Prof. Luis A. Albornoz

    Deputy Director: Prof. María Trinidad García Leiva



    About the program


    The program was created to respond to new theoretical and methodological needs in the field of media. For this purpose, it promotes forms of research suited to the demands of the business world in the field of information and audiovisual communication, while promoting a permanent line of contact between university and business in the new media situation of the 21st century.

    The objective of the program is the training of highly qualified researchers in these areas from an integrating perspective that pays particular attention to the profound transformations of recent decades in the traditional media ecosystem.

    Students are required to have a full-time commitment (doctoral thesis and training activities) to the program. Admissions with part-time commitment will therefore be exceptional and must be accompanied, where appropriate, by a statement from the employer confirming that the necessary time will be allowed to carry out the doctoral studies.

    The duration of full-time doctoral studies is a maximum of 3 (three) years, from the enrollment in the Program until the request for deposit of the thesis (Regulations of the UC3M Doctoral School, art. 16.1).

    Doctoral theses can be presented in Spanish or English.

    Career opportunities for students of this program are oriented towards the development of research at university or research centers of excellence and the development of research in and for international organizations and/or the private sector.


    • Program regulated by RD 99/2011, January 28

    Student profile


    The desired profile includes the following aspects:

    • Research master's degree in the field of communication from a prestigious institution.
    • Excellent academic background.
    • Advanced English skills (minimum C1 or equivalent).
    • Research project in the framework of the lines of research of the Ph.D. Program.


    Admission requirements


    As a general rule, to access this Ph.D. Program it is required to have a bachelor's degree (or equivalent) and a master's degree in the area of ​​Media or related areas in Social Sciences and Humanities. Priority will be given to graduates of the Master's Degree in Applied Research to Mass Media of the UC3M Department of Communication.

    Exceptionally, candidates with prior training in areas other than those indicated may be admitted, provided they meet the requirements established in current legislation to access doctoral studies. In this case, the Academic Committee of the Ph.D. Program will study whether the training can be considered equivalent to that of the Master's Degree in Applied Research to Mass Media and/or will determine the complementary training.

    Admission criteria


    The Academic Committee of the Ph.D. Program will admit applicants based on the criteria listed below:

    • Excellent academic background (50% weight).
    • Master's degree in Applied Research to Mass Media at UC3M or research master's degree in Communication from a prestigious institution (20% weight).
    • Motivation letter, statement of time commitment, research project in the framework of the research lines of the Program and research interests of the candidate (20% weight).
    • Proof of English skills: minimum C1 or equivalent; required for students carrying out their doctoral thesis in English (10% weight).

    Previous research experience will be greatly valued.

    Documents required for application:

    • Detailed curriculum vitae.
    • Motivation letter
    • Research proposal
    • Proof of advanced English skills and, if Spanish is not the candidate's native language, proof of advanced Spanish skills.*

    Additionally, candidates can provide:

    • Endorsement letter from a Professor from the Ph.D. Program Faculty
    • Copy of Master Thesis or scientific publications


    The Academic Committee of the Ph.D. Program may require an interview with the candidate for a better assessment of their application.


    (*) Language skills

    Candidates whose native language is other than Spanish are required to provide proof of Spanish skills with certifications such as Diploma de Español como Lengua Extranjera (DELE) or from Instituto Cervantes or Servicio Internacional de Evaluación de la Lengua Española (SIELE GLOBAL). The minimum level required for admission is C1 (Common European Framework of Reference for Languages-CEFR).

    Candidates carrying out their doctoral thesis in English are required to provide proof of English C1 level or equivalent (Common European Framework of Reference for Languages-CEFR).


    Seats available for the academic year: 25




    Specific training


    Conferences and seminars organized by the Ph.D. Research program and groups

    They will focus on different topics related to the field of study and research, and will have both national and international focus.

    These conferences and seminars are in Spanish or English and speakers are renowned guest researchers . Ph.D. students must take those more in line with their interests.



    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.

    Students must take 6 credits (60 hours approximately) throughout the doctoral training period.


    Further information: 


    ACADEMIC YEAR 2021/2022


    • 25th of April 2022 | 11:30 h.
      Informative Session on Industrial Doctorates 
      In-person and online session. Room 18.0.A.12, Carmen Martín Gaite Building (Getafe Campus)
      Description  | Video


    • 12th of May 2022 | 15:00 h.
      Conference Big data, algorithms, and cultural industries. Dr. Philippe Bouquillion
      In-person session. Room 14.0.11, Concepción Arenal Building (Getafe Campus)
    • Research Lines
      • Media effects
      • The future of the journalistic profession
      • Film and television studies
      • Political economy of audiovisual media
      • Media innovation in digital environments
      • Media and society
      • Media and digital information trends
      • Ethics, deontology and good practices in emerging news media
    • Scientific results

      This is a sample of relevant publications derived from doctoral thesis work over the last years.


      Thesis: Televisión del Principado de Asturias: dinamización y diversidad en el sector audiovisual asturiano (2005-2015)
      Author: Azahara CAÑEDO

      • ALBORNOZ, L. y CAÑEDO, A. “Diversidad y televisión en Argentina: el caso del Programa Polos Audiovisuales Tecnológicos”, Cuadernos de Información y Comunicación, Vol. 21, 2018, pp. 179-200.*
      • ALBORNOZ, L. y CAÑEDO, A. “La reflexión académica sobre la televisión autonómica en España: entre la reivindicación de la diversidad y la denuncia por manipulación política”, en MARZAL, J., IZQUIERDO, J. y CASERO, A. (eds.). La crisis de la televisión pública. Nuevos escenarios tras el cierre de RTVV. Barcelona: Colección Aldea Global, 2015, pp. 29-53.
      • ALBORNOZ, L. y CAÑEDO, A. “The Audiovisual Technology Hub Programme and TV Diversity in Argentina”, en RICHERI, L. y NORODOM, A.T. (eds.): Diversity of Cultural Expressions in the Digital Era. Buenos Aires: Teseo, 2016.
      • CAÑEDO, A. “Evolución del marco regulador de la Televisión del Principado de Asturias: debilidades y fortalezas para la garantía de la diversidad cultural”, en ZALLO, R., MIGUEL, J.C., CASADO, M.A. y NEREKAN, A. (coords): La Comunicación de Proximidad Amenazada. Bilbao: Servicio Editorial de la Universidad del País Vasco, 2015, pp. 133-150.

      *Latindex Catalog
      MIAR: ICDS 2019 9.9
      RESH: 15 CNEAI criteria, 20 ANECA criteria
      Databases: RED ALyC and ISOC; Databases: DOAJ, IBSS, RED ALyC, SA and ISOC 


      Thesis: El asesino en serie en el cine de terror estadounidense (1960-1986): un discurso en la cultura popular
      Author: Erika TIBURCIO

      • TIBURCIO, E. “A Nightmare on Elm Street: una pesadilla cultural de la que era difícil escapar”, Brumal. Revista de investigación sobre lo fantástico, Vol. 4, Núm. 2, 2016, pp. 227-246 (Miar ranking: 9)
      • TIBURCIO, E. “Estados Unidos a través de la cámara: el cine de terror como discurso histórico en 'La última casa a la izquierda’”, Cuadernos de Historia Contemporánea, núm. 38, 2016, pp. 353-376 (Miar ranking: 10, CIRC ranking: B)
      • TIBURCIO, E. "She Was Not Like I Thought: The Woman as a Strange Being in Masters of Horror”, en GERRARD, S., HOLLAND, S. & SHAIL, R. (eds.). Gender and Contemporary Horror in Television, ISBN 978-17-8769-104-9, Emerald Publishing Limited, 2019, pp. 59-69.
      • TIBURCIO, E. Y nació el asesino en serie. El origen cultural del monstruo en el cine de terror estadounidense, ISBN 978-84-9097-645-6, Catarata, 2019.


      Thesis: Relevancia de la Memoria Histórica en el ordenamiento jurídico y documental en España
      Author: Eduardo RANZ

      • RANZ, E. “La ley de amnistía, puente a libertad, y soporte para la impunidad”, Historia y Comunicación Social, Vol. 23, Núm. 2, 2018, pp. 307-319.*
      • RANZ, E. “Procesos legales y judiciales sobre exhumaciones de víctimas de la guerra civil y dictadura en el Valle de los Caídos”, Cuadernos republicanos, Núm. 99, 2019, pp. 29-84.

      *Scopus 2017: Q1
      CIRC: Latindex Catalog, Human Sciences, A Ranking
      MIAR: ICDS 2018 10.9
      RESH: 15 CNEAI criteria and 18 ANECA criteria
      Databases: A&HCI, AH&L, DOAJ, HA, WPSA and ISOC


      Thesis: Del storytelling al storytelling publicitario: el papel de las marcas como contadoras de historias
      Author: Pablo VIZCAÍNO

      • “A nadie le interesan tus anuncios. Un manifiesto contra la publicidad de interrupción”, Revista Mediterránea de Comunicación, Vol. 10, Núm. 10, 2019, pp. 289-291.


      Thesis: El reportaje inmersivo con vídeo en 360º: características, buenas prácticas y empleo por parte de los medios periodísticos españoles
      Author: María José BENÍTEZ

      • BENÍTEZ, M.J. y HERRERA, S. “Análisis del nivel de inmersión en los reportajes en vídeo en 360º de medios españoles (2015-2017)”, Communication and Society, Vol. 32, Núm. 2, 2019.
      • BENÍTEZ, M.J. y HERRERA, S. “El reportaje inmersivo en vídeo en 360º: diseño de un modelo de análisis”, El Profesional de la Información, Vol. 27, Núm. 1, 2018, pp. 149-161.
      • BENÍTEZ, M.J y HERRERA, S. “Los primeros pasos del reportaje inmersivo a través de vídeos en 360º”, Historia y Comunicación Social, Vol. 23, Núm. 2, 2018, pp. 547-566.


      Thesis: Cine transnacional y geopolítica hispanoamericana: el caso de España en sus relaciones con la Argentina (1931-1943)
      Author: Emeterio DIEZ PUERTAS

      • DÍEZ PUERTAS, E. Cine y comunicación política en Iberoamérica: diez estrategias de poder ante el imperio de la imagen. Barcelona: UOC, 2018.
      • DÍEZ PUERTAS, E. El sueño de un cine hispano: España y sus relaciones cinematográficas con la Argentina (1931-1939). Madrid: Síntesis, 2017.


      Thesis: Cuerpos en movimiento: experiencias cinestésicas en el cine de acción hongkonés
      Author: Víctor AERSTEN

      • AERSTEN, V. “Recepción crítica del cine de acción hongkonés en EE.UU. (1985-1997): estrategias de legitimidad artística, Estudios sobre el Mensaje Periodístico, Núm. 24, 2018, pp. 429-445.
      • AERSTEN, V. “Sentir el sentido del filme: la dimensión corporal de la composición visual en la teoría de Serguéi M. Eisenstein”, Zer. Revista de estudios de comunicación, Vol. 22, Núm. 42, 2017, pp. 137-154.


      Thesis: El papel del espectador social en la industria televisiva

      Author: Noelia IÑESTA

      • IÑESTA, N. “Espectador social y convergencia televisiva”, Ámbitos, Núm. 28, 2015, pp. 50-62.

      CIRC, Latindex Catalog: Human Sciences, B ranking
      MIAR: ICDS 2015 4.204
      RESH: 13 CNEAI criteria, 16 ANECA criteria


      Thesis: Museos españoles en Facebook: análisis de su comunicación en el marco del museo social digital
      Author: José Manuel MAS

      • MAS, J.M. “Museos españoles en Facebook: análisis de su comunicación como museos sociales”, Revista de Comunicación, Vol. 17, Núm. 2, 2018, pp. 185-207.


      Thesis: La alfabetización cinematográfica en Hispanoamérica: los ejes de España, México y Argentina
      Author: Tamara MOYA

      • MOYA, T. “Towards a film literacy canon: identification and multicultural analysis of the contents used in film education with pre-university students in Spain”, Communication and Society, Vol. 32, Núm. 1, 2019, pp. 235-249.


      Thesis: Impacto mediático y político del activismo hacker en la sociedad red. Estudio de caso: Wikileaks
      Author: Alberto QUIAN

      • QUIAN, A. y ELÍAS, C. “Strategies and Reasons for the Impact of WikiLeaks on World Public Opinion”, Revista Española de Investigaciones Sociológicas, Núm. 162, 2018, pp. 91-110.


      Thesis: El Periodismo de Datos en España y la política y políticas públicas que afectan su desarrollo como fenómeno sociocultural: ley de transparencia y agenda pública
      Author: Leonardo LA ROSA

      • SANDOVAL, M.T. y LA ROSA, L. “El big data como elemento sociocultural diferenciador del periodismo de datos: la percepción de periodistas y expertos”, Comunicación y Sociedad, Vol. 31, Núm. 4, 2018, pp. 193-208.


      Thesis: El conflicto armado sirio a través de sus ciudadanos. El storytelling de los carteles del pueblo de Kafranbel
      Author: Leila NACHAWATI

      • SANDOVAL, M.T. y NACHAWATI, L. “Riesgos y oportunidades para la libertad de expresión en la era post primavera árabe. Periodistas premiados por Index on Censorship”, Revista Latina de Comunicación Social, Núm. 73, 2018, pp. 1016-1033.


      Thesis: Periodismo de investigación impreso en España (2005-2016): estado actual y predisposición al pago
      Author: Eduardo Francisco RODRÍGUEZ GÓMEZ

      • GOYANES, M. & RODRÍGUEZ-GÓMEZ, E.F. “Presentism in the newsroom: How uncertainty redefines journalists’ career expectations”, Journalism, Num. 4, 2018.
    • Scientific publications

      This is a sample of recent faculty publications:


      Artículos en revistas nacionales e internacionales

      ARCILA, C., BARRANQUERO, A. & GONZÁLEZ TANCO, E. “From Media to Buen Vivir: Latin American Approaches to Indigenous Communication”, Communication Theory, Vol. 28, Num. 2, 2018, pp. 180-201.

      ARMENTEROS, M., BENÍTEZ, A., FLORES, R., SILLERO, M., SÁNCHEZ CID, M. & SIMÓN, J.A. “The training of soccer assistant referees beyond on-field experience: the use of the Interactive Video Test”, International Journal of Computer Science in Sport, Vol. 17, Num. 2, 2018, pp. 163-174.

      BENÍTEZ, M.J. y HERRERA, S. “El reportaje inmersivo en vídeo en 360º: diseño de un modelo de análisis”, El Profesional de la Información, Vol. 27, Núm. 1, 2018, pp. 149-161.

      BENÍTEZ, M.J. & HERRERA, S. “Analysis of the Level of Immersion of 360º Video Features Produced by Spanish Media”, Communication and Society, Vol. 32, Núm. 2, 2019.

      CASCAJOSA, C. & RODRÍGUEZ ORTEGA, V. “Daenerys Targaryen Will Save Spain: Game of Thrones, Politics and the Public Sphere”, Television & New Media, 2018,

      ELÍAS, C., “Science journalism as an academic discipline: the fusion of western media and science seen from a literary and social perspective”, Communication Papers Media Literacy & Gender Studies, Vol. 7, Num. 13, 2018, pp. 9-26.

      GONZÁLEZ ALDEA, P., HERRERO, E. & MARTA-LAZO, C. “Journalism Education in Spain: The Gap between University Studies and the Labour Market”, European Journal of Social Science Education and Research, Vol. 5, Num. 2, 2018, pp. 61-72.

      GOYANES, M. & CATALÁN, D. “Ubiquitous laptop use in higher education: Multitasking and students’ perception of distraction in a European setting”, First Monday, Vol. 22, Num. 10, 2017.

      GOYANES, M. & RODRÍGUEZ GÓMEZ, E.F. “Presentism in the newsroom: How uncertainty redefines journalists’ career expectations”, Journalism, 2018, 1464884918767585.

      GOYANES, M. & RODRÍGUEZ-CASTRO, M. “Commercial Pressures in Spanish Newsrooms: Between love, struggle and resistance”, Journalism Studies, 2018, pp. 1-22.

      GOYANES, M. “Against dullness: on what it means to be interesting in communication research”, Information, Communication & Society, 2018, pp. 1-18.

      HERRERA, S., MACIÁ C. & LUENGO, M. “When one is not enough. Professional perception of traditional ethical mechanisms for new times in Journalism”, Estudios sobre el Mensaje Periodístico, Vol. 24, Núm. 1, 2018, pp. 213-231.

      RODRÍGUEZ ORTEGA, V. “Atlético vs. Real: Madrid’s soccer feud, urban space and stadia”, Soccer & Society, Vol. 19, Nums. 5-6, 2018, pp. 716-729.

      ZAHEDI, F. “Who are you Mr. Kiarostami: Koker Trilogy and European Critics and Scholars”, Quarterly Review of Film and Video, 2018, pp. 1-21.


      Libros y capítulos de libros

      ARMENTEROS, M., BENÍTEZ, A., SÁNCHEZ CID, M. y GARCÍA, A. “Fotogrametría y audiovisual. Perspectivas de evolución”, en Los nuevos retos en Ciencias sociales, Artes y Humanidades. Madrid: Gedisa, 2018.

      CARRERA, P. Nosotros y los medios, prolegómenos para una teoría de la comunicación. Madrid: Biblioteca Nueva, 2016.

      CILLER, C. y PALACIO, J.M. Producción y desarrollo de proyectos audiovisuales. Madrid: Síntesis, 2016.

      EIROA, M. (coord.). Historia y Memoria en Red. Un nuevo reto para la historiografía. Madrid: Síntesis, 2018.

      GALÁN, F.J., AGUADO, G., CARO, F.J. y MANFREDI, J.L. Empresa Informativa XXI. Planificación estratégica, Madrid: Síntesis, 2017.

      GALLEGO, J.I., FERNÁNDEZ SANDE, M. & LIMÓN, N. Trends in Radio Research. Diversity, Innovation and Policies. Cambridge: Cambridge Scholar Publishing, 2018.

      GARCÍA LÓPEZ, S.; FERNÁNDEZ RODRÍGUEZ, M. & RODRÍGUEZ ORTEGA, V. “Parchís as a multimedia franchise: Consumption and fandom across the Hispanic world”, en Childhood and celebrity. London: Routledge, 2017.

      GOYANES, M. “The Scientific Structure of Media Management: Strategies for Emancipation”, en Media and Metamedia Management. Berlin: Springer, pp. 175-182, 2017.

      GOYANES, M. Desafío a la investigación estándar en comunicación. Crítica y alternativas. Barcelona: UOC, 2017.

      IMBERT, G. Crisis de valores en el cine posmoderno (Más allá de los límites). Madrid: Cátedra, 2019.

      ZAHEDI, F. “La programación de cine en TVE durante la Transición Española (1975-1982), en MONTERO, J. (dir.) Una televisión con dos cadenas: La programación en España (1956-1990). Madrid: Cátedra, 2018.


      Further information on the full list of publications.



    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 infomation: 

    • 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:

      First semester of the 22/23 academic year
      Admission application deadline: February 1st through August 31st 2022 (23:59 h., CET)
      PhD start date: November 15th

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

      Enrollment period for new students
      First semester: September 1st through 30th (23:59 h., CET) of the current academic year
      Second semester: March 1st through 31st (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.

      What is the duration of a Ph.D.?

      The regular duration of a full-time Ph.D. program is 3 years. This period can be extended up to 5 years.

      The regular duration of a part-time Ph.D. program is 5 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


      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.

      What is the outcome of a Ph.D.?

      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 independent committee.

      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 22/23 academic year with start date on the 15th of November, 2022, can be submitted from February 1st through August 31st, 2022 (Spanish peninsular time, CET)*

      Applications for admission for the second semester of the 22/23 academic year with start date on the 30th of March, 2023, can be submitted from September 1st, 2022 through January 31st, 2023 (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 service allows you to submit your enrollment data online. To access the application, just enter your ID or passport number and the four-digit password generated by our system upon initial registration. Forgot your code? You will need to print out your proof of enrollment and tuition fees invoice, when applicable.


      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: 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 31st (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.  

      Please note: Upon completion of your Ph.D. training, it is required to be enrolled in both the Ph.D. monitoring of the academic year of your thesis defense and the Ph.D. thesis Defense and Assessment module in order to defend your thesis.


      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 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?

      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, in compliance with the Code of Good Practice of the Doctoral School.

      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 doctors 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 is in charge of approving the defense? Who can be a member of the Thesis Committee?

      Once the deposit period is ended, the Academic Committee of the program, upon favorable assessment by the tutor/advisor, will submit their proposal for defense and appointment of Thesis Committee members to the Dean of Doctoral School.

      This Committee consists of three experts in the field of research of the Ph.D. candidate, two of which must be based outside uc3m.

      Further information:  Defense session. Appointment of Committee members


      How are defense logistics managed?

      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, issued by the Ministry of Education of Spain, and the payment of the corresponding fees is managed by the Doctoral School Offices.

      Issuance of your certificate may take 6 to 12 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 Education. 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: 2013-2014


      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)