Explore this article to get insight on course structure, admission requirements, application procedure, and all the relevant information on PhD programs in Italy.

PhD in Italy

The experience of studying in Italy will be permanently etched in the memory, for one reason never getting too many. Be it the spectacularly dressed pizzas or the leaning tower of Pisa; the Saint Peter’s Square or the ever buzzing Piazzas; the city of Rome or the city of Milan, there is much more to Italy than one can even imagine. Italy will provide the students with unforgettable moments of seeing all this, along with imparting quality education that will put them up in the international job market. The research or doctorate degrees offered by Italian universities, with in-depth and subject specific guidance from the experts in the field, at an affordable price, will more than make up for having to miss out on UK or US world class but expensive education. Moreover, the number of subjects that are offered in Italian universities are just as many that are offered in any other leading education provider country of the world. To get more details on the PhD program offered in Italy, go through the following lines.
Degree Recognition
The PhD degrees gained from Italian universities are internationally recognized and valued by employers and research institutes who want to utilize the services of those who have successfully completed the course and have made an important contribution in the related field.
Degree Structure
The 3rd cycle degree programs (Dottorato Di Ricerca) in Italy make up for the highest level of educational qualification there is to achieve. Commonly known as doctoral degree programs in many countries around the world, these make both expertise of professionals and up-to-date facilities available to the students, necessary to undertake high level of research activities in universities, public institutions, and private associations. As in many other countries, the PhD degree in Italy is of 3-4 years of duration and the students, along with the research, are required to prepare 100,000 words long dissertation. It’s only after presenting and defending this dissertation in front of a panel comprising of experts in the field that the degree is awarded. Throughout the period of research, students are guided and mentored by the experts in the field they have chosen. In terms of eligibility, the PhD degree programs in Italy can only be taken up by students who hold 2nd cycle degree program or equivalent qualification from an overseas country. Also, passing a competitive or entrance exam is also mandatory for taking up admission in any university.
Subjects of Doctoral Degree
Humanities; Social Sciences; Education; Law; Music;; Economics; Business; Architecture; Design; Science; Community Nutrition; Therapies; Pharmacy; Engineering; Agriculture; Medicine; Dentistry; Veterinary Medicine; Agriculture; Social Science; Food Science & Technology; Natural & Rural Systems Management; Chemical and Biological Sciences; Law Management; Dentistry; Architecture; Design; Information Technology and Computer Science; Physics; Pharmacy; Speech Pathology; Health Sciences; Nutrition and Tropical Health, and many more subjects in different disciplines.
Academic Calendar
The academic year in Italy starts from the end of September or beginning of October until July. Generally, a semester system is followed by universities; first of which starts in September/October and ends in January/February. The second semester starts in February and ends in July.
Admission Requirements
  • Students seeking admission in PhD degree programs in Italian universities must submit all their transcripts/mark sheets/certificates acquired from successful completion of master’s degree/2nd cycle degree in Italy or an equivalent qualification from overseas.
  • Students are required to submit the above mentioned documents only after converting the marks or grades obtained in their home country in accordance with the grading system that is followed in Italy.
  • The supporting documents, along with any other manuscript that may be asked by the authorities, should be submitted in Italian language. If they are in English, make sure that you get them translated by a recognized translator or authority.
  • The certified copies of the originals also need to be provided. These should be certified by a person or agency recognized by the law or government of student’s home country.
  • Students need to be proficient in Italian language to gain university access for the doctoral degrees. Documentary evidence in support of proficiency in Italian also needs to be presented. If the student is not thoroughly acquainted with Italian language, he/she is required to learn the language and then appear and clear an Italian language proficiency exam organized and administered by individual institutions in the first days of September every year.
  • Admission in PhD degrees in Italian universities is subject to clearing up a competitive admission examination organized by individual universities or central authorities. As the medium of language of these exams is Italian; it is only after a student has first scored well in Italian language proficiency exam that he/she will be allowed to appear in this competitive admission examination.
  • A mandatory health insurance is also to be taken up by the students, coming from non European Union countries, to cover up for probable medical expenses that may occur during their stay in Italy.
Application Procedure
  • At least before a year of the closing dates of application, you should select and shortlist the universities and courses you want to apply in. The closing dates for submitting the applications can be found at the university’s website.
  • After the searching process is done with, you need to contact the Italian consulate or embassy located in the student’s country/city and fill up the application for the PhD degree in the chosen university. All the necessary documents are to be provided to the consulate (translated in Italian and legalized by competent authorities of the student’s home country).
  • After the consulate is done with scanning the application and supported documents; you will be provided with a statement necessary to enroll you in the course, a student number and an account, required to register for the competitive admission examination which will be held in Italy.
  • Further procedure of application procedure is subject to your passing the competitive examination. If passed, you need to go to the Foreign Student Office in your country/city with all the supported documents along with the statement issued by the consulate.
  • For admission in some universities, official study plan complete with university logo also needs to be provided, along with the translated copy in Italian.
Tuition Fees
  • Many of the universities and other higher education institutions in Italy establish their own fee structure and it varies from university to university. However in case of university education there is a legal minimum fee for enrolment and maximum level for student contributions to costs and services, which cannot exceed beyond 20% of state funding.
  • Depending on which university the student is applying and in which course, the average annual fee can be anywhere between € 850 and € 1,000. Also, keep in mind that the private universities will be much more expensive than the government funded universities.
  • Student assistance in terms of scholarships, student loans, housing assistance, refectory meal tickets, and fee waivers are provided to both international and Italian students on the basis of some requisites financial means or merit.
  • Students in need of any information can contact the Diritto Allo Studio Universitario (DSU) office as all these services are managed by it. DSU offices also provide information on things like extracurricular activities, sports, transport, and other matters.

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