In the academic year 2016/17, Ciências has about 350 PhD students, members of its Research Units, and supervised by senior researchers.
For each PhD programme, it is the coordinator’s responsibility to monitor the activity of students, by endorsing the Advanced Training Course (in Portuguese, the Curso de Formação Avançada, or CFA) and participating in the annual evaluation committees that assess the activity of each student.
All over Europe, there is a clear need to improve the stay of PhD students throughout their advanced postgraduate studies, as recognised by the EU Commission which recommends taking this responsibility with high priority.
With the PhD Support Programme, Ciências intends to integrate and plan in a coherent way all the non-scientific activities that can be selected by students on a yearly basis. The programme has six optional components:
- Career Strategy Programme
- PhD Countdown Programme
- Personalised Support
- Soft Skills Programme
All students must attend the Welcome session of the semester when they arrive at the Faculty. This programme is not a substitute for active doctoral programs, and strives to make existing components available to students (with the exception of the new component, no. 2) depending on students’ needs and interests.
Components 3 and 5 are already being used by PhD students (with or without supervisors' knowledge). Component 4 is already active for all FCUL students (the schedule is fixed and public) and their inclusion intends to draw the attention of doctoral students to their existence. Some modules of component 6 already exist in doctoral programs, and all such modules should be available to all students provided their schedule is known in advance.
The PhD Support Programme is not a standalone programme and is, essentially, a yearly-based plan of activities. It will not jeopardise the normal scientific activity of students in departments and research units; the selected activities are not time consuming in the context of four years Phd programmes. It can, definitely, satisfy clear needs and interests of some students, especially when envisaging their own professional future.
Research Support Office
Fernando Lopes: firstname.lastname@example.org
217500720 and ext. 25354