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Steps in teaching and research pathway

Before the doctorate

In general, if you want to devote yourself to teaching and research at universities or research organisations, you should start by doing doctoral studies. During the final year of your degree, you can try to obtain a collaboration scholarship in the university departments (or in research groups of public research organisations), which will help you learn about the research being carried out and make decisions for a later stage. 

The predoctoral stage - R1

You will have to find a PhD thesis director and enroll in an official postgraduate program at an university. To choose such program, it is important to take into account whether it has a quality award or any other national or international recognition.

The first part of the PhD consists of a master's degree, with between 60 and 120 ECTS credits, which will allow you to start the research stage, during which you must develop an original research work, which will give rise to a PhDl thesis. During this phase, you will make publications and presentations in journals and events in your field of knowledge. It will also be interesting for you to spend time in centres in other countries.

If you want your PhD thesis to have an international mention to the title, you must complete a minimum of three months of research in a centre in a country other than Spain, part of the panel members judging your thesis must be from a country other than Spain, among other requirements you can check here.

During this period, you can obtain predoctoral contracts of different types, some from the entities and others through public grants (see here).

See EDUCM (UCM PhD School)

The postdoctoral stage - R2

The postdoctoral stage can serve to orient your career towards a more purely research field, or towards the academic-research area, in the public or private sector.

At this stage you will participate more actively in research projects and you will carry them out more autonomously, within the framework of a research group.

During this stage, you can apply for different public grants, which will in turn guide you towards a more specifically research career or one with a greater academic-teaching component (see).

In general, during this period you should make an effort to spend time in universities or research centres in other countries, preferably for at least two years, as international experience is an important requirement, often essential, for some grants at a more advanced stage, as well as a selection criterion or significant merit in universities and public research bodies. During this stage, you can try to gain access to non-permanent positions at the university, such as assistant doctor.

Consolidation - R2 to R3

At this stage, you are expected to have acquired considerable research experience and autonomy, and fully developed your teaching competence. You can apply for some grants for research positions in universities and public research organisations, as well as some permanent employment positions. 

At this stage, there are employment contracts, such as hired doctoral professors, as well as civil servant positions, corresponding to the so-called university teaching bodies, in which you will find university professors.