PhD Programmes

  • PhD Programme in Biogeosciences

    General Information

    Number of places: 25

    Languages: Spanish

    Coordination
    • María Jesús Cañal
       
      mjcanal@uniovi.es
    Commissions

    Academic

    • Aida González Díaz
    • José Luis Acuña Fernández
    • Mario Quevedo de Anta
    • Amalia Jiménez Bautista
    • María Jesús Cañal
    Presentation

    PhD Programme in Biogeosciences of the University of Oviedo

    The PhD Programme in Biogeosciences is the result of the integration of two disciplines of the Natural Sciences: Biology and Geology. Its title reflects the emergence of new fields of research located at the border between these two branches of knowledge. Without renouncing to the formation of researchers in the fields of study that belong to the PhD Programmes that preceeded it, this PhD Programme in Biogeosciences aims at developing new interdisciplinary areas that are the result of an integral approach to the knowledge of natural and human terrestrial systems.

    The goal of the programme is to educate a new generation of PhDs in fields that are extremely important for society due to their implications in the environment, sustainable development and the quality of life. The different lines of research involved in the program cover aspects such as the maintenance of biodiversity, the quality of waters and the atmosphere, the safe storage of residues, bioremediation, climate change, the sustainable exploitation of resources and the evaluation and prediction of natural risks. All of these aspects constitute a challenge for society and the industry in Europe and the rest of the world. The key issues are multidisciplinary, so they demand the collaboration of Biology, Geology, Geochemistry, Ecology, Hydrology and Engineering. The creation of solutions requires a strong collaborative effort between the academia, the industry and the different public institutions to educate the future generations of professionals and researchers.

    The PhD Programme in Biogeosciences is part of the strategy for R&D&i of the University of Oviedo, of which a key element is the Cluster of Energy, the Environment and Climate Change.

    This PhD Programme is developed with the collaboration of: Servicio Regional de Investigación y Desarrollo Agroalimentario del Principado de Asturias (SERIDA) Centro Tecnológico Forestal y de la Madera (CETEMAS), AMPHOS-21 Consulting S.L., Instituto Geológico y Minero de España (IGME), Instituto Nacional del Carbón (INCAR-CSIC), among others.

    Access and Admission

    Access Profile:

    This PhD Programme is mainly directed to Graduates in Sciences of Life, preferably in Biology and Geology, Biotechnology, Environmental, Forestry and Rural Sciences and other related sciences.

    In the case of the field of Geology and Geosystems, the preferred Undergraduate Degrees (or equivalent Bachelor's and Engineering Degrees) are Geology, Geological Engineering, Environmental Sciences, Engineering in Mineral and Energy Resources and Environmental Engineering. In second place there are other Degrees, such as Geography and Territorial Planning, Sea Sciences, Geomatic Engineering and Topography, and other traditional Degrees in Sciences (Chemistry and Physics).

    In the case of the field of Vegetable Biotecnology, Ecology and Biodiversity and Management and Conservation of Biological Resources, the Undergraduate Degrees (or equivalent Bachelor's and Engineering Degrees) that have preference are Biology, Biotechnology, Environmental Sciences, Marine Biology, Sea Sciences, Forestry and Natural Environment Engineering, Rural Sciences, etc. Other Degrees may have strong connections to this field, though they would require complementary formation, such as Biochemistry, Geography and Territorial Planning, etc.

    In terms of Master's Degrees, as a general rule, the PhD Programme will considerate very positively a Master's Degree in specializations related to the lines of research of the Programme that has granted the student with previous knowledge and skills that allow them to approach the specific research conducted either in the lines of "Biology" or "Geology and Geosystems", depending on which the student has chosen to develop their PhD research.

    The Master's Degrees in Geological Resources & Engineering Geology, Biotechnology Applied to Conservation & Sustainable Management of Plant Resources, Environmental and Health Biotechnology and Marine Biodiversity and Conservation offered by the University of Oviedo, as well as similar ones offered by other Spanish and international universities, have preferent and direct access (without complementary formation) to the PhD Programme in the corresponding line of research. Other Master's Degrees, with similar nature or that are compatible with the lines of research and give enough formation to the student to start a researcher career in Biology or Geology, may be evaluated very positively and may not require complementary formation.

    Teaching languages will be Spanish and/or English. A minimum knowledge of English, equivalente to a B1 level, is required.

    Criteria for Admissions:

    The selection of candidates will be conducted based on the following criteria:

    • Academic record: 5 points.
    • PhD grant: 1 point.
    • Professional experience and previous scientific production: 1 point.
    • Level of knowledge of English proved by official examination: 1 point.*
    • Suitability of the previous Undergraduate and Master's Degrees to the PhD Programme: 2 points.

    *Minimum level required for evaluation: B1.

    Part-time students

    In order to be admitted as a part-time student, the candidate must prove that their are working at the time of completing the application form by providing a certificate of employment. The selection of students admitted into one of the 5 places reserved for part-time dedication will be conducted based on the months of employment with 0.1 points given for each month worked.

    Complementary Formation:

    The students who come from the Master's Degrees in Geological Resources & Engineering Geology, Biotechnology Applied to Conservation & Sustainable Management of Plant Resources, Environmental and Health Biotechnology and Marine Biodiversity and Conservation offered by the University of Oviedo will not need complementary formation. Other Master's Degrees that provide similar contents or that are coherent with the lines of research and give enough research formation in Biology and Geology, offered by other Spanish or foreign universities, will not require any complementary formation either.

    Students who access the PhD Programme with a Master's Degree that does not fulfill the aforementioned criteria, and those who present a fundamental lack of previous formation according to the PhD Committee, will have to take the complementary formation.

    The students who access the PhD Programme with an Undergraduate Degree whose duration is, at least, of 300 ECTS, will have to take compulsory complementary formation, unless the teaching plan of the Degree includes credits in research formation, equivalent to credits assigned for this practice in research Master's Degrees.

    The complementary formation that the the student will have to take will be of a maximum of 18 ECTS, corresponding to subjects of Master's Degrees offered by the University of Oviedo, selected according to the line of research requested by the applicant and their previous formation. The subjects that will be part of these complements are detailed as follows:

    • Field of "Geology and Geosystems"
      • Mineralogy and applied and environmental geochemistry (3 ECTS)
      • Digital cartography and systems of geographical information (SGI) (3 ECTS)
    • Field of "Vegetable Biotechnology"
      • In vitro cultivation of cells and tissue (4 ECTS)
      • Molecular techniques and genetical variability (4 ECTS)
    • Field of "Ecology and Biodiversity"
      • Principles of Biology of Conservation: criteria and applications (4 ECTS)
    • Field of "Management and Conservation of Biological Resources"
      • Management of biological resources and territorial planning(4 ECTS)

    Formative Activities

    Activities

    • Formación Transversal
      Total Amount of Hours: 60

      Description of the Activity: This activity aims at working on the basic competences and working on the general capacities and skills of the PhD students.

      It is composed of seminars and the PhD Conferences. The Seminars will approach, among other topics, contents related to the dissemination and communication of research or the quality entry in the working world as specific formation in the topics related with more than one field of research. The PhD Conferences combine conferences, panels and participative sessions, as well as the showcase of "posters" that explain the contents of the theses and the advances of the research that is being conducted by the PhD Students.

      A detailed annual scheduled will be composed and made available at the website of the International Center for Postgraduate Studies (http://cei.uniovi.es/postgrado).

      The goal is that the PhD students acquire, among others, the following learning results:

      • Searching for scientific information online.
      • Creating, presenting and publishing scientific information.
      • Creating and presenting a patent.
      • Knowing the basic principles of enterprise creation and self-employment.
      • Exchanging knowledge between PhD students.
      • Disseminating their research activity among the enterprises and the whole of the Asturian society.
      • Finding professional alternatives to the development of their university research career.
      • Highlighting their role as innovator to the enterprise.

      This activity is compulsory for all the PhD students of the University of Oviedo, who have to attend for a minimum of 60 hours during their formative period.

      Teaching languages will be Spanish and/or English.

      Monitoring Procedures: An individualized control of attendance will be performed. When deemed necessary, the performance of the PhD student in these activities will be assessed with an essay or project whose precise specifications will be given to them by the people in charge of said formative activity.

      All these controls are part of the document of activities of the PhD student (DAD), which will be regularly revised by the Tutor and the Director of the Thesis, and evaluated by the Academic Committee in charge of the Programme.

      Mobility Actions: Not applicable

    • Presentation of a communication in a Scientific Congress
      Total Amount of Hours: 40

      Description of the Activity: This activity aims at making the PhD student capable of communicating before a scientific audience the results of their research activity, working on the CB13, CB14, CB15 and C16 competences and developing the CA04, CA05 and CA06 capacities and skills.

      Directed at full-time students in their second and third, and to part-time students in their fourth and fifth year, under the supervision of their tutor and the director of the Thesis. The activity involves the selection of a scientific congress, in the field of study of the PhD Thesis, the presentation of a summary of the communication to be selected by the scientific committee of the congress and the final presentation, be it as an oral communication or a poster, during the selected congress.

      Monitoring Procedures: The student will have to provide the certificate of presentation of the communication once the congress is finished.

      The student will also have to provide a report on the activity they carried out according to the precise guidelines given by the people in charge of the formative activity.

      The participation of the PhD student in the congress will be part of their document of activities of the PhD student (DAD), which is evaluated by the Academic Committee in charge of the Programme.

      Mobility Actions: The PhD Programme will open the procedures to let the student obtain financial aid to attend congresses.

    • Composition of a manuscript to be published in a journal included in the JCR Science Edition
      Total Amount of Hours: 20

      Description of the Activity: This activity aims at working on the CB11, CB12, CB13, CB14, CB15 and C16 competences and developing the CA02, CA03, CA04, CA05 and CA06 capacities and skills.

      Directed at full-time students in their second and third, and to part-time students in their fourth and fifth year, under the supervision of the director of the Thesis. The PhD student is expected to be able to complete the process of creation of a scientific article that includes part of the results obtained throughout their research for their PhD Thesis. As the main author, the PhD student will be in charge of composing the manuscript and, once it has been revised by their Thesis director and approval has been given, they will send it to a scientific journal (preferably one with high or medium impact) belonging to their field of research.

      Monitoring Procedures: Presentation of the full manuscript published in the format of the journal, as it had been sent for its publication.

      The student will have to provide the document that proves the submission of the article given by the publishing house.

      The publication of a scientific article will be part of their document of activities of the PhD student (DAD), which is evaluated by the Academic Committee in charge of the Programme.

      Mobility Actions: Not applicable.

    • Complementary activities proposed by the Director
      Total Amount of Hours: 5

      Description of the Activity: By proposal of the Director of the Thesis, the PhD student will have to complete hours of activities that do not fit the previous categories, up to 5 in three years for full-time student and five year for part-time students. Said activities may include:

      • Participation in the presentation of proposals of research projects
      • Participation in activities of scientific culture for centers of Secondary Education and Baccalaureate
      • Collaboration in the composition of technical reports
      • Other activities, that must be approved at the start of each academic year by the PhD Committee

      Monitoring Procedures: The student will have to provide a certificate that proves that they have conducted the activity and a report of said activity using the guidelines given by the people in charge of the formative activity.

      Both documents will be part of their document of activities of the PhD student (DAD), which is evaluated by the Academic Committee in charge of the Programme.

      Mobility Actions: Not applicable

    • Short research stay (Mobility)
      Total Amount of Hours: 169 (4 weeks) and 480 (12 weeks)

      Description of the Activity: This activity aims at working the CB11, CB12, CB13 and CB16 competences and developing the CA02, CA03 and CA04 capacities and skills.

      Directed at full-time student in their second and third years, and at part-time students in their fourth and fifth year, under the supervision of the Director of their Thesis. The student will have to make a stay in another Research Center different from the one in which they are conducting their PhD research, with a minimum duration of 4 weeks (1 month) and a maximum duration of 12 weeks (3 months). The receiving Center may be national or international, either one from the list mentioned in section 6 of the Academic Planning, with which the PhD Programme collaborates, or with another Center that is found to be suitable for the development of the research plan of the PhD student.

      This formative activity is not compulsory for students who do not have a specific funding or a PhD grant that covers short stays, or for those whose request has been denied.

      Monitoring Procedures: The stundent will have to provide a certificate to prove that they have finished the stay, signed by the person in charge of the Center, and which will include the dates that comprised the stay and the research group in which they worked.

      Report by the Tutor in the receiving center that specifies the tasks and activities conducted by the student, the degree of fulfillment and performance, acquired capacities and skills and the overall assessment of the student.

      Presentation by the student of a Summary of the activity performed, composed according to the precise guidelines that will be provided to them by the person in charge of the formative activity.

      All of these documents will be part of the of the document of activities of the PhD student (DAD), which is evaluated by the Academic Committee in charge of the Programme.

      Mobility Actions: The PhD Programme will open the procedures to let the student obtain financial aid for short stays.

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      Vegetable Biotechnology: Physiological and molecular bases of vegetable development. (Epi)-genomic regulation of development, aging and response to abiotic stress. Plant-microorganism interactions and vegatable healthcare. Phytoremediation. Conservation of germoplasm. In vitro cultivation of cells and tissue.

    Lines of Research

    Vegetable Biotechnology

    • Mª Jesús Cañal Villanueva
    • Isabel Feito Díaz
    • Elena María Fernández González
    • Mª Aida González Díaz
    • Ricardo Javier Ordás Fernández
    • Mª Ángeles Revilla Bahillo
    • Ana María Rodríguez Alonso

    Ecology and Biodiversity

    • José Luis Acuña Fernández 
    • Florentino Braña Vigil
    • José Manuel Cano Arias
    • José Antonio Fernández Prieto
    • Daniel García García
    • José Alfredo González Nicieza
    • Belén López Martínez
    • José Ramón Obeso Suárez
    • Mario Quevedo de Anta
    • José Manuel Rico Ordás

    Management and conservation of biological resources

    • José Luis Acuña Fernández
    • Elías Afif Khouri
    • Florentino Braña Vigil
    • Asunción Cámara Obregón
    • Juan Pedro Majada Guijo
    • José Ramón Obeso Suárez
    • José Manuel Rico Ordás
    • José Alberto Oliveira Prendes
    • Mario Quevedo de Anta

    Geology and Geosystems

    • Francisco Javier Alonso Rodríguez
    • Francisco Javier Álvarez Pulgar
    • Fernando Bastida Ibáñez
    • Lope Calleja Escudero
    • Mª José Domínguez Cuesta
    • María de los Ángeles Fernández González
    • Luis Pedro Fernández González
    • Amalia Jiménez Bautista
    • Carlos López Fernández
    • Jorge Marquínez García
    • Agustin Martin-Izard
    • Heather Marie Stoll
    • Manuel Prieto Rubio
    • Olga García Moreno

    Contact

    International Center for Postgraduate Studies

    Address:
    Plaza de Riego. 33003 - Oviedo
    Telephone:
    985 10 49 75 / 985 10 49 76
    Fax:
    985 10 49 59
    E-mail:
    infodoctorado@uniovi.es
    Coordination
    • María Jesús Cañal
       
      mjcanal@uniovi.es