Study plan

Once students have been admitted to the research period of the doctoral programme, the University provides them with personalized pathways, designed taking into account their specific skills and research capabilities (particularly with regard to research methodologies), as well as their research interests. The pathway may thus include courses, seminars and other activities intended to hone their research skills. Students must take and successfully complete any such activities included on their personalized pathway.

In order to acquire the advanced training required to complete a research project, students must complete, during the doctoral programme's research period, all subjects, courses and/or activities included on their personalized pathway.

The training offer in the organized research period consists of various types of training activities, with different durations, schedules and aims, organized into five blocks (methodology courses, thematic research seminars, bridging courses, supplementary research-oriented training activities and doctoral research seminars). Some of these training activities, such as those included in the methodology course, thematic research seminar and doctoral research seminar blocks, are divided into two areas: the information and knowledge society and network and information technology.

Summary of the various training blocks for the organized research period:

Type of training activity Duration Teaching mode Timing Compulsory or optional
Bridging courses One semester Online 1st year (1st semester) Compulsory
Optional courses One semester Online 1st year (1st or 2nd semester) Optional
Research, transfer and entrepreneurship courses One semester Online During the research period Optional
Workshops 10 hours Online During the research period Optional
Research seminaris Annual On-site During the research period Compulsory1
Academic participation activities N/A On-site During the research period Compulsory1

1Activities aimed at full-time doctoral students studying on-site.

In any case, the addition of courses, seminars and activities to students' pathways will depend on their prior training and research experience, as well as the specific area or subject addressed by their research project.

 

Bridging courses

 

Timing Field of the information and knowledge society ECTS credits Type Language
1st or 2nd semester Research Design in Social Science 5 Compulsory English
1st or 2nd semester English B2.1 6 Optional English
1st o 2nd semester English B2.2 6 Optional English

 

Research Design in Social Sciences

The Research Design in Social Sciences course is taught in English. This course lasts one semester and is taught using the UOC's e-learning platform, which provides advanced training in research methodology in some of the fields where the research project is being conducted.

This course is compulsory. All students must enrol on it and pass it during the second semester. In special cases, the Doctoral Degree Academic Committee may allow a student not to study it when, during the admission period, they submit proof of having completed this training beforehand and have already finished the thesis plan.

English

If, for example, the student does not have the required B2 level of English, they will be required to study the courses offered by the UOC's Centre for Modern Languages: English B2.1. and English B2.2.

In any event, to complete the doctoral studies, we recommend that students achieve a C1 level of English, which can also be achieved through the English C1.1 and English C1.2 courses.

Optional Courses

Students' learning pathways may include optional courses. These are based on the specific training needs associated with the entry requirements and are assigned by the Doctoral Degree Academic Committee. Particularly in the case of students from outside the European Higher Education Area, these may include courses from the UOC's (university) master's degree offer and, if they enrol, students will need to study and pass them during the first academic year of their doctoral studies.

The Interdisciplinary Analysis of the Network Society course, taught by professor Manuel Castells, provides elements that are particularly useful for the research data analysis stage, which is why we recommend that students do not study it at the beginning but at the end of the 4th semester of their doctoral degree.

 

Timing Field of the information and knowledge society ECTS credits Type Language
4th semester Interdisciplinary Analysis of the Network Society 5 Optional English
1st or 2nd semester Advanced Qualitative Methods in Knowledge Society Research 5 Optional English
1st or 2nd semester Advanced Quantitative Methods in Knowledge Society Research 5 Optional English
1st or 2nd semester Research in e-Learning 5 Optional Catalan/Spanish
1st or 2nd semester Research Methods 5 Optional Catalan/Spanish
1st or 2nd semester Data Analysis Techniques 5 Optional Catalan/Spanish
1st or 2nd semester Construction of Instruments for Research 5 Optional Catalan/Spanish
1st or 2nd semester Research Design in Social Sciences 5 Optional English
1st or 2nd semester Research Methodologies in Network and Information Technologies 6 Optional English
1st or 2nd semester Research Techniques in Network and Information Technologies 6 Optional English
1st or 2nd semester Formalization and Proofs 5 Optional English
1st or 2nd semester Computer Modelling & Simulation 5 Optional English

 

Research, transfer and entrepreneurship courses

The UOC also offers research, transfer and entrepreneurship courses in English aimed at students, researchers and faculty to foster research in scientific, academic and business fields.

Research, transfer and entrepreneurship courses can be recognized as free elective credits on bachelor¿s degree courses. If you are studying a doctoral degree at any university and have obtained a competitive grant, you can also study it as part of your training resources.

 

Timing Field of the information and knowledge society ECTS credits Type Language
Annual (1st semester) Entrepreneurship for Researchers 2 Compulsory1 English
Annual (2nd semester) Training Programme for Doctoral Thesis Supervisors 3 Optional English
Annual (1st semester) Academic Writing 2 Optional English
Annual (2nd semester) Introduction to Patents and Intellectual Property Protection 2 Optional English

1This is compulsory for students on the Industrial Doctorate.

Workshops

The student may be able to take part in short training activities to support their research, depending on the nature of their previous studies, research interests and course mode (full-time on-site, or online).

 

Timing Field of the information and knowledge society ECTS credits Type Language
Annual (1st semester) Search for Academic Information 0 Recommended English
Annual (1st semester) Bibliographic Reference Management 0 Recommended English
Annual (2nd semester) Where to Publish: How to Identify Leading Journals 0 Recommended English
Self-learning NVivo Qualitative Analysis 0 Optional English

 

Research seminars

Throughout the organized research period, the student is expected to participate actively in the doctoral degree research seminar, either in the on-site version (if they are studying full-time) or online. The aim of doctoral degree seminars is that doctoral students, professors and other UOC researchers come together and debate the research projects (in progress or completed). Professors, visiting professors and other invited experts will also give presentations on subjects of interest to the students.

Academic participation activities

This concept includes participation activities in all types of activities relating to professional scientists and considered inherent to the training of researchers, such as presenting papers at conferences, research visits, publications and organizing academic activities. Within these activities, presenting papers at conferences and publishing scientific articles during the doctoral degree are considered compulsory.

Enrolment

The doctoral candidates admitted to the programme shall be assigned an advisor who is a UOC lecturer or researcher holding a PhD and with accredited research experience in the same knowledge or subject area and sufficient knowledge of the programme. The advisor shall ensure the doctoral candidate's interaction with the Academic Commission.

The doctoral advisor, taking into account the criteria established in each programme and the prior training and experience of the doctoral candidate, shall propose a personalised academic itinerary to the Academic Commission. The advisor shall also collaborate with the Academic Commission in selecting the lecturers or researchers to direct the thesis. The Academic Commission can modify the advisor assignment under justified circumstances.

Doctoral tutors are responsible for informing doctoral students of their personalized pathways, once they have been approved by the Academic Council, and for guiding and supporting them during their adaptation to the new learning environment. They moreover have to provide their students with the assistance they need to successfully complete their activities and must regularly review their students' activity documents in order to ensure that all the milestones on the pathway are reached.

Tutors have to endorse their doctoral students' research plans by the end of the first year. Subsequently, and at least once a year, they must issue a report for the Academic Committee on their doctoral students' progress on the approved research plan.

Upcoming admission: December 2017

Teaching starting: September 2018

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