Ph.D. Courses

The Ph.D. (Dottorato di Ricerca) is a qualification awarded on completion of a course corresponding to the third cycle of studies. Its learning outcomes are the knowledge of the most advanced level of a scientific field and the ability to extend, improve, redefine or innovate the existing knowledge through original research contribution.


A Ph.D. course lasts three academic years. As a general rule, each academic year goes from November 1 of a specific year to October 31 of the next year.

Types of Ph.D. courses

Three types of Ph.D. courses are available:

  • Ph.D. courses offered and implemented by the University of Catania as single institution. The final degree is awarded by the University of Catania.
  • Ph.D. courses offered and implemented by the University of Catania in collaboration with other Italian universities. The final degree is awarded by the University of Catania as coordinating institution. 
  • Ph.D. courses offered and implemented by the University of Catania in collaboration with foreign universities. The final degree can be a double degree. The Ph.D. student can be awarded two final national qualifications from both the University of Catania and the foreign partner university, provided he/she carries out his/her research at both universities.

Course Management

Each Ph.D. course is managed by an Academic Board and a Coordinator.

The Academic Board is composed by tenured professors and researchers from the University of Catania and from partner institutions, if any.

The Academic Board:

  • defines coursework activities;
  • approves the research project and the study plan of each Ph.D. student;
  • nominates an academic supervisor for each Ph.D. student;
  • authorizes Ph.D. students to carry out research work at other institutions, both in Italy and abroad;
  • monitors each Ph.D. student's research work at the end of each academic year and decides whether to admit the student to the subsequent year or exclude him/her from the course.

The Coordinator is elected among and by the Academic Board members. The Coordinator convenes and chairs the Academic Board and is responsible for the general coordination of the doctoral programme.

Access requirements

Candidates for a place in a Ph.D. programme must hold one of the following degrees:

  • "Laurea Magistrale"  or "Specialistica" or "Laurea Vecchio Ordinamento" issued by an Italian university;
  • Any foreign university degree corresponding to the second cycle of studies (second level - master level degree).

Selection procedure and Call for applications

Candidates for a Ph.D. programme are selected on competitive basis. Selection procedures always include the evaluation of specific qualifications. Additional tasks, such as written/oral examinations, might be required according to the type of Ph.D. programme. 

Each academic year the University of Catania issues a Call for applications (in Italian "Bando di Concorso"). The Call for applications provides candidates with information regarding:

  1. Ph.D. courses offered by the University of Catania in the relevant academic year with indication, for each Ph.D. course, of the following information:
    • Selection procedures;
    • Duration of the course;
    • Number of places with scolarships and funding institutions;
    • Number of non-scolarship places;
    • Partner institutions, if any; 
  2. Access requirements;
  3. Application guidelines and qualifications/annexes to be attached to the application form;

  4. Registration procedures and fees

Last updated: 
11/06/2019 - 10:49