PhD in Computational Science


What you learn

The main aim of the Ph.D. program in Computing is the training of new doctors in the area of advanced computing. The research teams that give the main support to the Program training are: MADS (Models and Applications of the Distributed Software), VARPA (Artificial Vision and Pattern Recognition), LIDIA (Lab. of Research and Development in Artificial Intelligence), LYS (Language and Information Society), LBD (Data Base Lab.), IRLAB (Information Retrieval Lab.) and GSA-GII (Autonomous Systems Group – Engineering Integrated Group).

Generic skills

• Systematic understanding of a study field and dominance of the research abilities and methods related to that field. • Capability of devising, designing or creating, putting into practice and adopting a substantial process of research or creation. • Capability of contributing to the extension of knowledge frontiers by means of an original research. • Capability of making a critical analysis and evaluating the synthesis of new and complex ideas. • Capability of communication with the academic and research community and with society in general about his/her knowledge area in the usual languages and ways in the international research community. • Capability of fostering, in academic and professional contexts, the scientific, technological, social, artistic or cultural advances within a knowledge-based society.

Specific skills

• Acquiring knowledge of Computational Logics and their main applications to other specific areas of research in computing such as Automated Reasoning, Knowledge Representation, Temporal and Spatial Reasoning, Multiagent Systems, Semantic Web, Formal verification, etc. • Understanding the basic concepts of Machine Learning, the different available techniques and their applicability scope. Being able to apply the different learning techniques using an appropriate methodology. • Acquiring knowledge of the main aspects of formal modeling and evaluation of Distributed and Concurrent Systems performance. • Getting an ample comprehension of Information Systems, from the more technical aspects like Compact Data Structures and the corresponding algorithms to the most advanced techniques of Information Retrieval, Information Extraction and Question Answering.

Professional and academic career

Professional and academic career

The Ph.D. program belongs to the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) sector. In Spain, despite of its increasing importance, the ICT sector generates a negative commercial balance. Thus, research in the ICT sector is essential for inverting that trend and placing the country as an exporter of informatics technology. The data justify the real demand, from the ICT sector, of professionals with a research profile, additionally giving response to the teaching and research necessities of the Galician University System and the Galician ICT sector. Although the proposed Ph.D. program presents an important scientific focus, the program also fosters the entrepreneurial spirit. Thus, previous graduates in the Ph.D. program of Computing currently belong to the staff of national ICT firms. The entrepreneurial spirit and self-employment is also fostered, starting from initiatives like the university spin-off promoting system, from which recent and significant examples like Lambdastream, Igalia or Enxenio were boosted and which have staff from previous graduates and teachers of the Ph.D. program in Computing.

Companies and institutions involved

The research groups of the Department of Computing maintain a wide set of collaborations with other groups and Spanish and international universities, which guarantee the teaching and mobility of the Ph.D. students. Also, collaborations with different firms of the ICT sector are maintained, by means of contracts between the firms and the research groups, in addition to the collaboration of PhD graduated and PhD professors with spin-off firms started in the heart of the Department. For example, the following list includes those that are more stable and have a special relevance for the Ph.D. program: Yahoo! Research Lab. (Barcelona - Spain), INRIA (France), University of Sunderland (United Kingdom), Nasa Langley Research Center (Hampton, VA, USA), Computational Neuroengineering Lab. (University of Florida, Gainesville, USA), Department of Computing - Imperial College London (United Kingdom), University Veracruzana (México), University of Chile (Chile), University of Houston (TX, USA), University of Gothenburg (Sweden), Polytechnic University of Madrid (Spain).

Research lines

This are the main research lines for current study.

  • Algoritmos genéticos
  • Análisis e interpretación de imágenes
  • Aplicaciones de IA: monitorización y control, diseño de sistemas clínicos, sistemas expertos en medicina, entornos dinámicos
  • Bases de datos deductivas
  • Bibliotecas digitales y federación de bibliotecas digitales
  • Bioinformática
  • Compresión, indexación y recuperación de textos
  • Computación en cluster
  • Computación evolutiva
  • Computación neuronal
  • Desarrollo de técnicas orientadas a la segmentación de imagen
  • Diseño de patrones
  • Eficiencia IR
  • Escalabilidad y fiabilidad
  • Ingeniería de la lengua
  • Ingeniería del software
  • Ingeniería e informática biomédica
  • Lingüística computacional
  • Lógica e Inteligencia Artificial
  • Modelos de procesamiento simbólico, representación del conocimiento e incertidumbre
  • Modelos IR
  • Procesamiento del lenguaje natural
  • Procesamiento del lenguaje natural y web semántica
  • Programación funcional y orientada a objetos
  • Recuperación de información (IR)
  • Redes funcionales y algoritmos de entrenamiento lineal para redes de neuronas artificiales
  • Robótica autónoma
  • Sistemas basados en conocimiento e Inteligencia Artificial (IA)
  • Sistemas de información geográfica
  • Sistemas distribuidos
  • Sistemas híbridos simbólico-conexionistas
  • Sistemas multiagente para detección de intrusos
  • Vida artificial
  • Vídeo bajo demanda
  • Visualización inteligente e interfaces usuario-sistema

Planning for teaching

Additional subject teaching

Candidates who do not meet all the necessary prior learning conditions for the programme may be required to complete additional courses in the form of subjects and modules from UDC Master’s and undergraduate programmes. The number of credits from additional subject teaching will not exceed 15 ECTS credits, which students may choose to complete before or after enrolment in the PhD programme.

Students who do not opt to complete additional coursework prior to enrolment should register for their extra subjects or modules at the same time as the PhD. Failure to complete additional coursework within a period of three consecutive terms will result in the termination of the student’s registration.

See also UDC PhD Policies and Regulations, Article 16: Applications.

EIDUDC teaching and training activities

EIDUDC teaching and training activities

Programme-specific teaching and training activities

In the Ph.D. program in Computing the specific teaching activities are organized in a series of introductory seminars to the different current research lines in the computer science scope, which also integrate the different teaching lines of the PhD program. The specific seminars are organized in three blocks or itineraries, which help the student to choose the seminars depending on his/her main interests about a research line to follow: Intelligent Systems, Distributed and Concurrent Systems, and Information Management. All the seminars are taught in 4 hours. The student must attend (mandatory) the transversal courses oriented to research methodology (offered by the CUFIE of UDC), whereas he/her must attend a total of 8 courses/seminars selected from the different offered specific seminars. Relation of specific seminars:

Supervision agreement

The PhD supervision agreement defines the academic relationship between the candidate and the University, the rights and responsibilities of each (including any intellectual and/or industrial property rights resulting from the candidate’s research), the procedures in place in relation to conflict resolution, and the duration of the agreement. It also specifies the duties of the PhD tutor and supervisor.

The supervision agreement must be signed by the candidate, tutor and designated university representative (or representatives) within a maximum period of one month as from the date of registration. The supervisor’s signature may be added subsequently, once a supervisor has been appointed.

When the document has been signed by all the relevant parties, the agreement is then added to the candidate’s record of activities.

See also UDC PhD Policies and Regulations, Article 31: Supervision agreement.

Research plan

The candidate must prepare a research plan within six months of registration, with information regarding methodology, objectives, resources and milestones. The research plan is submitted together with the report of the supervisor and/or tutor for approval by the Academic Committee for PhD Programmes (CAPD). Improvements to the plan may be introduced with the approval of the supervisor and/or tutor based on the annual review of the student’s research progress.

Research plans are subject to annual review by the CAPD, including the report(s) of the supervisor and/or tutor and the candidate’s record of activities. Students will be permitted to continue with their studies if the outcome of the review is satisfactory. If the outcome is negative, the student will be required to submit a new plan within a period of six months. If the committee is still not satisfied, the candidate will be removed from the programme.

See also UDC PhD Policies and Regulations, Article 30: Research plan.

Student mobility

UDC holds student mobility agreements with universities and other third-level institutions across four continents. Students are offered several opportunities each year to apply to study abroad in one of these centres (for a single term or for a whole year), with the guarantee that all credits obtained will be duly recognised in their academic record upon their return.

For each round of applications, the University publishes the list of exchange options available to students and, where relevant, the specific conditions associated with each. Students may also apply to the University for funding for international work experience placements and internships.

Work experience placements are accredited in the student's academic record and the European diploma supplement. Students are free to decide in which host company or academic institution within the EHEA they wish to carry out their placement. To assist them in their search, the University has created an online noticeboard with jobs postings and other news.

Work-study placements in A Coruña are arranged by the International Relations Office (ORI) of the UDC in collaboration with the international relations coordinators in the student’s home university. The general entry criteria, rights and obligations of students, and admission and acceptance procedures for the programme, are regulated by the UDC Mobility Policy.