The Education and ICT (E-learning) doctoral programme offers a total of 20 positions. This includes both students who obtain a competitive grant to study on-site full-time and students who do the programme remotely part-time. This programme includes an internal call for applications for grants to do the PhD. These grants are reserved for full-time on-site students. Students may also apply for other grants offered by different entities.

General requirements
For admission to this PhD programme, to study either part-time remotely or full-time on-site (with a grant), you must meet the general UOC and programme-specific requirements.
First, you must have one of the following:
  • An official Spanish bachelor's degree, or equivalent, and a university master's degree, or equivalent; you must have passed at least 300 ECTS credits in these two degree programmes.
  • An official Spanish university degree corresponding to previous ordinances of university education; you must have passed a minimum of 300 ECTS credits in official university studies, of which at least 60 must be at master's degree level.
  • An official university degree that is from a country in the European Higher Education Area (EHEA) and enables admission to official master's degree programmes; you must have passed at least 300 ECTS credits in all of your official university studies, of which at least 60 must be at master's degree level.
  • An official Spanish degree, which (as per European regulations) must comprise at least 300 ECTS credits; in this case, the student will be required to complete the bridging courses specified, unless the doctoral programme includes research training credits considered equivalent in educational value to the research credits from master's degree studies.
  • An official university degree from a country outside the EHEA, which will not require homologation (official recognition by the Spanish Ministry of Education) if its level is equivalent to a Spanish university master's degree and qualifies you for admission to doctoral studies in the country in which it was issued. 
  • A Spanish doctoral degree obtained in accordance with previous university ordinances.
  • The title of licenciado, arquitecto or ingeniero and an advanced studies diploma (Diploma de Estudios Avanzados), obtained in accordance with the provisions of Spain's Royal Decree 778/1998, of 30 April, or the research sufficiency (Suficiencia Investigadora) regulated in Spain's Royal Decree 185/1985, of 23 January.
  • An official university degree that corresponds to level three of the Spanish higher education qualifications framework (MECES), in accordance with the procedure established in Spain's Royal Decree 967/2014, of November 21, establishing the requirements and procedure for homologating and declaring equivalence for degrees and official academic levels, and for validating foreign higher education studies, and the procedure for determining correspondence with the MECES levels of Spain's official arquitecto, ingeniero, licenciado, arquitecto técnico, ingeniero técnico and diplomado qualifications.
If you have not successfully completed the initiation to research credits for a university master's degree, you will have to take the bridging courses specified by the programme.
If you only have an official bachelor's degree which, as per European regulations, has a duration of 300 ECTS credits, or you have not completed and passed the minimum number of initiation to research credits in a university master's degree, your continuation on the doctoral programme will be subject to the completion of the bridging courses specified by the programme.
Admission requirements
In addition to the general and additional requirements established by the UOC, the Education and ICT (E-learning) PhD programme establishes the following specific requirements:
  • If you are not a citizen of an English-speaking country, you must provide proof of English language competencies equal to or higher than B2 in the European Common Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR).
  • If you have attended school or have completed a bachelor's or master's degree (or equivalent qualification with regards to enrolment in the doctorate programme) in English in a country where English is an official language, you will be deemed to have an equivalent level to the one required.
  • You may also demonstrate your linguistic competency in English by means of another official certificate that proves you have a level equivalent to or higher than the one required. You can consult this equivalency table to see examples of certificates that correspond to these levels.
For the part-time (online) doctoral programme, if you do not meet the required level, you may gain admission to the PhD programme with a B1 level if you commit to achieving B2 level before submitting the research plan at the end of the first year. According to the regulations, if you do not attain this level, the research plan cannot be approved.
If you want to enrol on the programme on a full-time basis, you must provide proof of a level equal to or higher than B2 when you apply for admission. 
The UOC's Center for Modern Languages offers English courses to attain the minimum levels required for admission to the university's doctoral programmes.
The UOC also offers an online English language proficiency test. A score of between 72 and 94 accredits a level corresponding to B2 of the CEFR. When taking this test, you must specify the code that corresponds to the Universitat Oberta de Catalunya: 4418. This code does not exempt you from paying the corresponding exam fees.
Meeting the above requirements does not guarantee admission to the doctoral programme, but they must be met in order to apply for admission.
If you apply for a UOC grant, you must accredit a level equal to or higher than B2 when you apply for admission. For other grants, financial aid or research contracts, please consult the terms and conditions and requirements in each case (level of English, and part-time or full-time).


Admission documents
To apply for admission to the UOC's Education and ICT (E-learning) PhD programme, you must provide the following documents:
- Photocopy of your DNI, NIE or passport.
- Certificate of the level of English required by the doctoral programme (at least B2).
- Academic certificates for your previous studies, stating the subjects taken and the mark obtained, any courses retaken, the subject type, the number of credits, and the average mark in the academic transcript.
- Letter of endorsement from the UOC researcher who is supporting your application and your PhD project. This is an essential requirement for your application to be assessed. You must consult the research lines, choose the thesis proposal that best suits your research interests, and contact the corresponding researcher.
- Research project: document (maximum 4 pages) that describes the research you will conduct and its link to the thesis proposal that you have chosen. This document must contain the following sections:
  • Purpose and justification of the research, explaining its fit with the chosen line of research and the thesis proposal
  • Theoretical foundation and brief state of the art of the chosen topic
  • Problem and research questions
  • Outline of the research methodology and context
  • Expected results
  • Bibliography
(See the next section for the evaluation criteria.)
 - CV:
You must give record of your previous studies and professional experience. We recommend the following structure:
  • Specific research training (master's programmes, courses, etc.).
  • Research experience: participation in research projects or contracts, research stays at universities or research centres, membership in a research group, publications and presentations at conferences, etc.
  • General and specific academic or professional experience in the field of education and ICT: activities and projects, positions of responsibility and duties, other publications (non-research), etc.
 - Letter of motivation/presentation:
A brief (2-3 pages) description of your past activities in terms of education, employment, and specifically in research and relating to e-learning (we recommend using the same structure as indicated for your CV). You should also specify your motivations as regards the line of research you have chosen. It is also important to state your availability and the conditions under which you propose to do the PhD, specifying whether you want to do it full-time or part-time (remotely). The letter may also include arguments relating to the evidence you provide (see the next point).
-   Evidence supporting your arguments:
Selection of a maximum of 5 pieces of evidence (at the discretion of each candidate), accompanied by brief arguments allowing for assessment of the skills required to do a PhD project. Pieces of evidence can be presented in relation to each of the evaluation criteria indicated (see the next section), but in particular, evidence may be useful for the assessment of personal skills.
Evidence can be attached (where possible) or simply mentioned. Examples of pieces of evidence: a previous research work (in Catalan, Spanish or English), a letter of recommendation, a product derived from a project or job, activities included in your CV, etc. The list of pieces of evidence and your arguments relating to them can be included in the motivation letter or as a separate document.
- Documents that prove that you meet the admission requirements: Further information can be found in the appropriate section of the UOC Virtual Campus Procedures section.
University degrees obtained in higher education systems outside the European Higher Education Area and not homologated (officially recognized by the Spanish Ministry of Education) must be authenticated by diplomatic means (or, if applicable, by means of the Hague apostille). If certificates, degrees or academic records are not written in one of Spain's official languages or in English, the documents must be accompanied by a sworn translation into Catalan, Spanish or English. If you fail to submit these documents or the information they contain does not concur with your application, this may prevent you from being admitted to the PhD programme.
Finally, we recommend that you include a document listing all the documents that you are submitting.
Important: if you do not provide the documents required, your application will not be assessed.
Evaluation criteria

All applications that meet the eligibility requirements will be evaluated by the PhD programme's Academic Committee using a rubric, based on the criteria and merits shown in the table below.

CRITERIA (Dimension)

CRITERIA (Items, Merit)


Academic record

Bachelor's Grade Point Average (GPA)
Master's Grade Point Average (GPA)

Calculation of the average 




Research Project 

Suitability of the project:

- Degree of definition of the research idea, relevance, interest, and fit

- Knowledge of the field (correct problem approach, appropriate references)

- Proficiency in research (adequacy of methodology, correct formulation of questions, consistency of results)

Research Project 15
Research Training Specific research training (masters, courses, etc.)


Letter of motivation

Evidence and arguments (optional)

Research experience

-Participation in research projects or contracts

-Research stays

-Membership of a research group

-Previous research work

- Publications / conferences


Letter of motivation

Evidence and arguments (optional)

General and specific academic or professional experience in the field of education and ICT

Activities and Projects 

Positions of responsability and duties 

Other publications


Letter of motivation

Evidence and arguments (optional)


Personal skills


- Attitude towards work, persistence, motivation and long-term commitment

- Academic skills (academic writing, use of information sources, use of data for decision-making, etc.)

- Communication skills, consistency and structuring of arguments

- Proactive attitude and problem solving abilities

- Teamwork skills

- Conditions under which you propose to do the PhD and compatibility with other activities and commitments

Evidence and arguments (recommended) 

Letter of motivation

The first phase of evaluation will be based on the documents submitted by each applicant. In the case of applications that qualify for a grant (and other cases in which the committee deem it necessary), there will be a second evaluation phase consisting of an interview with the candidate. This interview will be conducted by a member of the academic committee and the UOC researcher who has endorsed the application. The purpose will be to contrast and clarify with the candidate the merits and skills included in their application, with reference to the documents submitted. Following the interviews, the assessment process will be completed using the rubric. This will generate a final score, allow for the ranking of all the applications. From this ranking, an ordered list of the applications selected for grants and an ordered list of the applications admitted to the doctoral programme without grants (doing the PhD remotely and part-time) will be drawn up.

1 December 2022: Start of the call for applications for access and admission to doctoral programmes.

12 February 2023: End of the call for applications for access and admission to doctoral programmes.

15 February 2023: Publication of the provisional lists of applications to be assessed. The lists will be published on the Doctoral School website.

16 February to 25 February 2023: Period for appeals of the applications to be evaluated.

27 February 2023: Publication of the final lists of applications to be assessed. The lists will be published on the Doctoral School website.

2 May 2023: Publication of the provisional resolution on the accepted online and granted candidates. The lists will be published on the Doctoral School website.

3 May to 19 May 2023: Period for appeals of the selection of online and granted candidates.

26 May 2023: Publication of the final resolution on the candidates admitted to the doctoral programmes and those who are granted. The lists will be published on the Doctoral School website.

July 2023: Start of the enrolment period 2023-24.

September 2023: Start of the academic year 2023-24.


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Teaching starting: September 2023