Legal admission requirements

The following requirements correspond to the regulations since the academic year 2012-2013 until now.

According to the Royal Decree 99/2011, to be eligible for a doctoral degree studies a candidate must hold an official Spanish bachelor's degree (or equivalent) and a master's degree. However, candidates in any of the following circumstances are also eligible:

  • a) Individuals holding an official university degree from Spain or any other country in the European Higher Education Area that, in accordance with the provisions of Article 16 of Royal Decree 1393/2007 of 29 October, qualifies holders for master's degree courses, provided they have also completed a minimum of 300 ECTS credits of official university coursework overall, of which at least 60 must be at the master's degree level.
  • b) Individuals holding an official Bachelor degree from Spain consisting of at least 300 ECTS credits, as required by European Union regulations. Individuals in this category are required to complete bridging courses unless the curriculum of the degree course in question included the same number of research training credits as would be required in a master's degree course.
  • c)  Individuals holding a degree from a foreign education system. In these cases, homologation is not required, provided it can be shown that the university in question offers a level of training equivalent to that of the official Spanish master's degree and that, in the issuing country, individuals holding the degree in question are eligible for doctoral degree courses. Admission via this channel does not imply homologation of the degree in question, and the degree shall not be considered as recognised for any purpose other than eligibility for the doctoral degree course.
  • d) Individuals holding a Spanish doctoral degree obtained under previous university regulations.

Admission  criteria

Academic and research profile that allows to develop research within the lines of the research groups involved in the program.
The Academic Commission of the program will assess the candidates who meet the above prerequisite by a weighting based on the following criteria:
  • Academic transcript of all university degrees and official studies. (up to 10 points)
  • Publications in scientific journals or conference proceedings. (up to 4 points)
  • Research experience. (up to 2 points)
  • Curriculum vitae. (2 points)
  • Appropriateness of the research area of interest to the program lines and candidate profile. (up to 6 points)ç
  • Other merits. (up 1 point)
Candidates should note that the interviews, research project proposals and letters of recommendation may be part of the admissions process as a means of obtaining additional information during the selection process.

    The Academic Committee may establish additional requirements for admission of students, in order to ensure a fair and equitable selection of candidates, according to their capacities and available resources.

    Candidates must be able to understand technical texts written in English and to easily follow courses and lectures in English. The PhD student will have to show a level of English language skills equivalent to level B1 in the framework of language skills of the European Council, both oral and written comprehension. 

    The student who is willing to follow the doctorate program will have to present the corresponding electronic admission request, attaching their academic records (including marks and the grading scale), their curriculum vitae, and have to specify the specialization and research group in which they want to carry out their doctoral thesis work.  Finally  an indication of the research topic of the future dissertation with the support of the supervisor.

    The Academic Commission will analyze the requests at least twice every academic year (July and February) and will take a decision about the admission. The Commission will assign a supervisor (tutor)  to each admitted student, the tutor will be a doctor of the Department when the supervisor is not from UPC. The assignment will be carried out taking into account the scientific interests of the applicant and according to the availability of the teaching staff. It will be attempted, whenever it is possible, that the tutor's research area is involved in the specialization asked for.

    Admission request

    Those applying for admission must do the following:

    • a) Check the admission requirements, specific admission criteria, and the enrolment calendar.
    • b) Apply for admission to the doctorate program's Academic Committee:
      • Register on the admissions page at and then fill in providing electronic copies of the following documents:
        • 1. Personal information.
        • 2. Transcripts for previous degrees and official courses. The transcript should include the grading scale.
        • 3. CV including details of research and published papers.
        • 4. Proof of any grants, scholarships or financial aid obtained.
        • 5. Proof of any other awards or any other relevant information.
    • c) Admission Request Process
      Any admission goes through the following stages:
      • Elaborant (Processing) From the moment of creation until students send it.
      • Pendent/Fora de termini (Pending/Out of requesting period) Verification of degree access requirements and of necessary documents.
      • Validada (Validated) The Academic Committee studies the application and decides to accept the applicant or not.
      • Admesa/No admesa (Admitted/Not admitted) Admission request process has ended.
    • d) Admitted requests
      • The admission document determines,  if considered necessary, the requires complementary background. This includes  a number of ECTS credits that must be passed and in some cases a more detailed curriculum design.
      • The Academic Commission will assign a tutor to each admitted student, the tutor will be a doctor of the Department. The assignment will be carried out taking into account the scientific interests of the applicant and according to the availability of the teaching staff. It will be attempted, whenever it is possible, the tutor's research be involved in the research area selected by the candidate. 
      • Tutors design an adequate itinerary for each of their students via interview or e-mail.
      • Students accept or reject the admission conditions.
      • Admitted students that accept the conditions must follow the enrolment process.

    International students legal procedures

    Prior to arrival: VISA

    Non-EU foreign students must come to Spain on a student visa.
    A tourist visa has no validity beyond its expiry date. Students who come to Spain on a tourist visa will be forced to return to their country of origin to apply for another visa if they wish to extend their stay. VISA TYPE:

    • Short stay: valid for 6 months (awarded when studies of under 6 months are intended). Non-renewable.
    • Long stay: valid for 3 months, although student cards may enable students to renew their visa over the period of study.
    Upon arrival

    Upon arrival, international students must head for the International Mobility Office* in Barcelona for guidance and specific information on how to ensure their academic stay is legal:

    • EU students must be registered as foreigners.
    • Non-EU students must renew their long-stay three-month visa, if applicable. Students on a long-stay three-month visa must start the visa-renewal process in under 30 days from arrival, or their stay may be illegal.
    All international students must have a tax  identification number (NIE) and insurance.

    This number identifies you.   It usually takes at least two months  to issue a NIE.  So don’t leave getting your NIE to the last minute!

    For further information on the process of applying for a NIE, contact the International Mobility Office.

    International Mobility Office
    North Campus, A4 Building
    Jordi Girona, 1-3
    08034 Barcelona
    Tel.: 93 401 69 37
    Fax: 93 401 74 02