Thesis submission and defense

The presentation and defense of a doctoral thesis at the UAM is regulated by the "Procedure relative to the jury, defense and evaluation of the doctoral thesis at the Autonomous University of Madrid" (see download area).

The following sections summarize the requirements for the presentation and defense of the Thesis within the Doctoral Program in Neuroscience:

1. Minimum publication requirement

In order to present the Thesis for defense, it is mandatory to have published at least part of its content (or, at least, have it accepted) in an international scientific journal indexed (Q1-Q2 JCR of the area).

In the publications derived from the Thesis, the student must appear as the first, second or sole author and mention the UAM-Cajal Doctoral Program in Neuroscience as an institutional affiliation. The formula in English for this mention is “PhD Program in Neuroscience, Universidad Autonoma de Madrid-Cajal Institute, Madrid, Spain 28029”.

2. Doctoral thesis presented as a compendium of publications

The doctoral student may present the thesis as a compendium of publications provided that he has the express authorization of the thesis director(s) and the academic committee of the program.

It is required to have published (or have accepted) a minimum of 3 articles derived from the work of the Thesis with preferential authorship of the doctoral student (first, second or sole author) in internationally indexed scientific journals with peer review (Q1-Q2 JCR of the area) or book chapters with ISBN and justified relevance. Publications must mention the UAM-Cajal Neuroscience Doctoral Program as an institutional affiliation. The formula in English for this mention is “PhD Program in Neuroscience, Universidad Autonoma de Madrid-Cajal Institute, Madrid, Spain 28029”.

The date of the publications must be after enrollment in the doctorate.

The volume of the Thesis must include: a) a general introduction to the subject of the abridged works, justifying the work and explaining the original contribution(s) (minimum 12,000 words, excluding those in figure captions); b) a summary and discussion of the published results (minimum 6,000 words), c) a list of Conclusions.

The Thesis volume must also include a facsimile copy of the documents published or accepted for publication.

3. Approval by the Academic Committee of the Program

When the thesis is ready for presentation, the student must, as a first step, request the approval of the Academic Committee of the Program. To do so, she must send the following documents to the Administrative Secretariat of the Program.

  • a) PDF copy of the Thesis, in final format.
  • b) The Reasoned Report of the Director/s of the Thesis endorsing the public defense. In the case of directors not linked to the Program, the ratification of the Report by the Tutor is also necessary.
  • c) Proposal for the Thesis Evaluation Board, which must include five experts (plus two substitutes) as possible members. The Tribunal must include at least one regular member who is a professor-researcher of the PhD Program in Neuroscience at the UAM.
  • d) An updated copy of the DAD (doctoral student activities document), signed by the Director.
  • e) The documents required to qualify for the International Mention, if applicable.

The Academic Commission will study the documentation presented, being able to request the opinion of external evaluators, experts in the specific subject of the Thesis, to assess its quality. If everything is correct, the Program Coordinator will sign and send documents “b” and “c” back to the student.

Otherwise, the Academic Commission may indicate specific changes in the scientific content or format of the Thesis, as well as in the Tribunal proposal, before approving the defense.

4. Deposit of the Thesis

Once the Academic Commission of the Program has approved the presentation of the Thesis, the student may send the Thesis volume and other necessary documents to the UAM Doctoral School (EDUAM) to request the Thesis Defense Authorization.

The EDUAM Steering Committee will verify if the documentation presented complies with all applicable legal requirements. If everything is in accordance, he will authorize the Public Defense session and notify the student. If not, ask the student for the corresponding correction.

5. Academic Thesis Defense Act

The Academic Thesis Defense Act may be convened, by the President of the Tribunal, from two weeks after receiving the approval of the EDUAM. Consult the necessary requirements for the Defense on the EDUAM website.

For more information on special situations, application for a PhD degree, degree equivalence and extraordinary awards, consult the corresponding sections in the "Doctoral Thesis" tab of the EDUAM website.