Masters’ degree in Democracy and Governance - Roads to Democracy(ies)

General Objectives of the Course

"The Master's ""Roads to Democracy(ies) aims to develop a broader understanding of how the concept of democracy has been understood and applied.
It is aimed that students will develop the ability to understand and comment on the mechanisms that underlie the existing conceptual diversity, as well as the ways in which democratic transitions have been made.
It is also expected, on the one hand, that students develop the necessary skills to allow them to critically and independently assess the democratic developments in national and supranational;
on the other hand students are expected to acquire awareness of the fragility of the democratic institutions and the importance of the concept of citizenship in the democratic process.
Finally, through additional and specialized training, the program will promote the acquisition of working tools, expertise, capacity for reflection, research, coordination and planning that will allow the execution of research projects autonomously."

Admission Requirements

"A 1st Cycle degree or legal equivalent, with affinities with the study areas of the Masters programme, or
A foreign 1st Cycle degree under the principles of the Bologna Process or recognised by the Scientific Councils of both faculties as satisfying the conditions of a graduate degree, or
Exceptionally, an educational, scientific or professional curriculum recognised by the Scientific Councils of both faculties from proposal of the coordination of the Masters, certifying the capacity to enroll in this masters. A solid knowldege of the English language is mandatory."

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

Professional Goals

Graduates with a master degree in Roads to Democracy will be employable in a wide variety of occupations. A master degree provides a good basis for responsible positions in secondary and higher education (PhD programme), civil service on the local, regional and national levels, journalism, international organisations, tourism as well as enhancing cultural heritage in its various manifestations including archives, museums and libraries.

Mode of Study

Full-time and Blended-learning

Teaching / Evaluation language(s)


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 the grade comprises more than one item, the final grade is calculated by taking into account the relative weight of each item according a formula published in the course outline under the terms of number 2 of article 7 of the UC Pedagogical Policy.

Learning Objectives and Intended Skills

"The participation in this master’s program will enable the students to:
Acquire an awareness of the diversity, complexity and variation in the processes of social and political construction of democratic ideals, its institutions and structures;
Develop a broad, diachronic and comparative knowledge of the mechanisms that govern the transitions to democracy;
Be able to comment on the contemporary democratic developments either domestically or in a supranational dimension;
Interpret international events;
Understand differences and similarities in the democratic regimes in Europe;
Become aware of the fragility of democratic institutions and the importance of citizenship in the democratic process;
Recognize the importance of excentric areas of knowledge in the constitution of democratic ideals;
Acquire the ability to plan and execute complex tasks;
Develop comparative working habits;
Exercise creative skills."

Course Coordinator(s)

Virgínia do Carmo Ferreira

ECTS Departmental Coordinator(s)

Carmen Isabel de Oliveira Amado Mendes

Recognition of Prior Learning

The recognition of prior learning is carried out according 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 nr 74/2006, 24th March, in its current wording

Graduation Requirements

The master’s degree will be awarded after successful completion of all the curricular units of the study programme and writing and defending publicly an original dissertation, totalling 120 ECTS. The successful completion of the curricular units of the two first semesters, corresponding to 60 ECTS awards a specialization course diploma.

Access to Further Studies


Study Programme

Roads to Democracy(ies)

Academic year

Course Type
2nd Cycle Studies - Advanced Specialisation Master Programme

DGES Code: M561

Qualification Awarded: Mestre

Duration: 2 Year(s)

ECTS Credits: 120.0

Category: Advanced specialization second cycle


Call for Applications (only in portuguese)


1st Semester
Start date: 10-09-2018
End date: 20-12-2018
2nd Semester
Start date: 04-02-2019
End date: 30-05-2019


Agência de Avaliação e Acreditação do Ensino Superior
2017-08-11 a 2020-08-10
Direcção Geral de Ensino Superior