PhD degree in Geography

Faculty of Arts and Humanities

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Academic year


Study Plan in alteration process for 2018/2019.



Course Type

3rd Cycle Studies

Qualification Awarded



4 Year(s)

ECTS Credits


Course Coordinator(s)

Lúcio José Sobral da Cunha (luciogeo@fl.uc.pt)

General Objectives of the Course
Objectives and curricular structure: Training of experts (autonomous and responsible researchers) and highly qualified professionals in geography which is a vital scientific field to society, economy, environment and land management in Portugal.
Learning Objectives and Intended Skills
The core competencies of this doctoral programme are: - Collect and process geographic information and use quantitative and qualitative methods in in-depth research, applying them in wider theoretical and professional contexts of analysis and land management ; - Mobilize research models to support and develop projects and research of the territorial context in which they are included. - Participate in research and service provision projects in fields, such as organization, administration and land management by integrating the acquired knowledge in the ability to make complex decisions in situations of limited information. - Produce and implement original models of development appropriate to different social, political and territorial contexts. - Know the natural, social and economic roots of nowadays’ major issues. - Integrate epistemological and ethical thinking in the assessment of the consequences and social responsibilities arising from individual decisions and organizations in which the professional works. - Participate and critically cooperate in the definition of politics and projects that are relevant to local and regional development. - Critically understand the present, by means of comprehensive information about space and time, including the distinction between episodic phenomena and sustained trends in space and time and its processes of change. - Develop a critical awareness of the identity and specificity of the territories in which the professional works, as well as of their communities, in a perspective of the exercise of informed citizenship and tolerance. - Acquire a particular awareness of the preservation of patrimonial heritage in general, that is also natural and built, material and immaterial, including its local, regional, global, cultural, social and technical aspects, in a sustainability perspective.
Mode of Study
Daytime, full-time and face-to-face
Access to Further Studies
Post-doctoral research.
Admission Requirements

In accordance with no.1, article 30 of the Decree Law no. 74/2006 and the dispatch that created this course, candidates to the 3rd cycle of studies leading to a doctoral degree, should be:
a) holders of a master´s degree in fields such as geography, earth sciences, engineering, architecture, economy, sociology and other social sciences;
b) assistant teachers who have passed the Pedagogical Aptitude and Scientific Capacity Test;
c) holders of a Bachelor’s Degree and an academic and scientific curriculum particularly relevant, which is recognized as attesting the capacity to accomplish this cycle of studies by the Scientific Council of the Faculty of Humanities;
d) holders of an academic, scientific or professional curriculum, which is recognized as attesting the capacity to accomplish this cycle of studies by the Scientific Council of the Faculty of Humanities.
The recognition referred to in subparagraphs (c) and (d) in number 1 above allows only access to the cycle of studies leading to a PhD Degree and does not grant its holder the recognition or equivalence to a Bachelor’s or Master’s Degree.

Candidates should check the admission requirements available on this site, in addition to the information provided here.

Recognition of Prior Learning
According to the Credits for Previous Learning and Work Experience Policy of the University of Coimbra.
Qualification Requirements and Regulations
The legal framework for the qualification is established by the decrees: Decree-Law no 74/2006, 24th March, in its current wording; Ordinance nº 782/2009, 23rd July
Professional Goals
The PhD degree in Geography is only required to have access to a higher education teaching career. However, it promotes career opportunities for specialists in public institutions and private companies in fields such as Territory Planning, Environment, Cartography and Geographic Information Systems.
Examination Regulations, Assessment and Grading
As assessment is a pedagogical activity inseparable from the teaching process, its aim is to establish the students' competencies and knowledge, their critical sense, ability to recognize and resolve problems, as well as their written and oral presentation skills. Students may only register for exams for classes they are currently registered for under the terms of number 6 of article 4 of the University of Coimbra Pedagogical Policy. The following are examples of assessment items: Oral or written exams, written or practical work, individual and group projects that may require an oral defense, as well as class participation. Assessment for each class may include one or more of the above mentioned items. Grading is based on a scale of 0 to 20 and a grade of 10 is required to pass. Whenever assessment includes more than one item, the final grade is calculated by taking into account the relative weight of each item according to a formula published in the course outline under the terms of number 2 of article 7 of the UC Pedagogical Policy.
Graduation Requirements

To obtain the PhD degree, students should obtain a successful assessment in the curricular units and the public defense of an original thesis.

Study Programme
- A3ES
Agência de Avaliação e Acreditação do Ensino Superior
  • 2017-10-23 a 2023-10-22
R/A-Ef 1636/2011 - DGES
Direcção Geral de Ensino Superior
  • 2011-03-18