PhD in Computing regulated by RD 99/11

The Computing programme regulated by RD 99/2011 addresses research areas related to the analysis, design and use of software. This means, in particular, research areas such as: programming methodology, theoretical computer science, analysis and design of algorithms, bioinformatics, computer-aided geometric design, virtual reality and synthesis of realistic images.

In order to focus scientific and methodological skills on specific topics, the programme has a structure based around the core research areas  bound to the research groups involved in the program. Each research area offers a set of courses at Master level and research seminars and projects within the corresponding research groups.

PhD general information

Official postgraduate programme (POP) to which the doctoral programme belongs:
Information and Communication Technology

Related official degrees  that grant access to the Program:
Master in Innovation and Research in Informatics  with a major in Advanced Computing  or  in Computer Graphics and Virtual Reality. Master in Advanced Mathematics and Mathematical Engineering  with a major in Discrete Mathematics and Algorithmics.

Quality Mention (until 2010) or Excellence Mention (from 2011) reference code and attainment academic years:

MEE2011-0425 (2011, 2012, 2013)
MCD2003-00130 (2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009)

Doctoral programme that it replaces (and reference to the MEC Quality Mention if applicable):
SOFTWARE (MCD2003-00130)

Basic and/or associate units at UPC involved:

The doctorate program in Computing/Software has been a fundamental support for a big part of the research performed in the departments of Computer Science Department (CS),  formerly Languages and Information Systems. The program has accommodated Catalan students as well as students from the rest of the world. The acceptance that the programme has had among the students, its internationalization and the quality of their doctoral theses have been determining factors when receiving and keeping the mention of quality of the Ministry of Education and Science since year 2003.

The doctorate program  in Computing appears after the adaptation to the EEES of the doctorate program in Software that was created in year 1985. The new framework originated by the guidelines of Bologna made the adaptation of the studies of postgraduate courses indispensable. For this reason a design that integrates a program of Master and another of Doctorate was selected  in 2005 in order to provide a solid and competitive training to the students who wished to carry out their research in one of the research topics of the areas of computing that are part of the program. The actual program  results from the adaptation to the Royal decree 99/2011, the new Master degrees configuration in the area of Information Technologies at UPC and the new structure of the CS Department. The program has been verified in accordance with the regulations on official university degrees defined by Royal Decree 99/2011 by the AQU in October 2012.  

Justification of the necessity of the programme:
The Computing doctorate program covers subjects of research in a set of disciplines related with the programming of the computers: algorithms. programming, data bases, bioinformàtica, computer visualization, virtual reality, etc. These subjects are a continuation of the studies carried out in the Bachelor's degree in Informatics Engineering major in Computing and the Bachelor's degree in Mathematics,  as well as the related Master's degree in which the Department has teaching responsibility, as well as other closed in interest degrees. Moreover, these areas are tied to the activity of the companies in the sector of the computer science, and to research topics recognized at international level.

The high participation of the groups of research involved in the program in competitive research projects, most of them funded at European or National level, together with the number of new students that the program attracts every year as well as the number of doctors who are incorporated to the industria, the universities or to other institutions of research also justifies the opportunity of this doctorate program.

In general, the Computing programme addresses research areas related to the analysis, design and use of software. This means, in particular, research areas such as:  data mining, programming methodology, theoretical computer science, analysis and design of algorithms, bioinformatics, computer-aided geometric design, virtual reality and synthesis of realistic images.

In order to focus scientific and methodological skills on specific topics, the programme has a structure based around the core research areas  of the involved research groups.  i

Regulation for the development and evaluation of the thesis:
The UPC regulations that apply are available at: Academic regulations UPC.

Number of entry places per academic year, in view of the teaching, supervision and research capacity

Specific agreements established if other organisations or universities are involved:

Infrastructure and facilities that must be available for the students to be able to carry out research:
Rooms for doctorate students..

Specific criteria for selection and admission to the programme and the criteria for assessing student's merits (if applicable):

Academic and research profile that allows to develop research within the lines of the research groups involved in the program.
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)
• 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. 

    Main qualifications required for admission, if any:
    The prioritary degrees to access to the program are: Master in Innovation and Research in Informatics (majors in Advannced Computing or Computer Graphics and Virtual Reality) or Master in Applied Mathematics (major in Discrete Mathematics and Algorthmics)  with a Bachelor degree in Computer Engineering, Computer Science, or of similar areas, always with the previous analysis of the academic records and curriculum.

    Procedure for issuing an admission application request:
    The student who is willing to follow the doctorate program will have to present the corresponding admission request, attaching their academic records, including marks and grading scales, their curriculum vitae, and specifying the research topic of interest and the  research group in which they want to carry out their doctoral thesis work.

    The Academic Commission will analyze the requests at least twice every academic year (July and February) and will take a decision about the admission application. The Commission will assign a supervisor to each admitted student and a  tutor when the supervisor is not a member of 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.  Whenever it is possible and needed, the tutor's research will be involved in the specialization asked for.  

    A compromise among the doctoral candidate  and the research supervisor(s) must  be formalized and signed upon enrollment.

    Procedure established for periodically monitoring students (if applicable): The Academic Commission of the Doctorate program assigns a supervisor/tutor to each student who is admitted. The supervisor  makes the follow-up of the student during the development of the thesis work.  

    At the completion of each  academic year  each PhD candidate  must submit a report of the activity developed along the period to the program's Academic Commission. Likewise the tutor or the supervisor will submit a reasoned report about the progress attained along the course. The Academic Commission will make use of these reports for the evaluation of the student's academic performance together with the established scheme for monitoring the development of the Research Plan conducting the thesis work.  

    Activities organised by the programme aimed at complementing the methodological or scientific training of the students:
    A joint seminar will be organized by the program aiming at showing the last advances in the different intensifications.

    In an eventual way intensive courses or research seminars will be organized connected  with the mobility programs  in which the program participates.

    Requisites for complementary methodological or scientific training courses, if any (the official master's degree programme that these courses belong to must be specified):
    In the case that complementary background is required, the courses should be taken from the offer of  the Master in Innovation and Research in Informatics or the Master in Advanced Mathematics ans Mathematical Engineering. 

    Time limit (if any) for carrying out bridging courses and criteria for expelling students if they fail to comply:
    The students will have two opportunities for passing complementary courses, the required time will depend on the periodicity of the offer of the subjects that they have to pass.