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 PhD Medicine

The PhD in Medicine (PhDMED) is targeted at doctors (both interns and specialists). Its goal is to provide research skills in health sciences and medicine for the development of independent biomedical and clinical research in the academic setting, in the business setting or in healthcare institutions.

It has two study plans: a three-year (180 ECTS) and a four-year (240 ECTS) full-time program, or a part-time program (with the same ECTS) that lasts longer.

The 180 ECTS program includes in its first year a curricular unit dedicated to designing the PhD project (15 ECTS), and remaining time is to develop the thesis (165 ECTS).

The 240 ECTS program includes a mandatory curricular unit dedicated to designing the PhD project (15 ECTS) during the first year; and optional curricular units that can be selected from a wide range of courses (45 ECTS total) and the thesis (180 ECTS) to take place in the remaining years.

The PhDMED has a specific study plan (MD/PhD) targeted specifically at medical students from the School of Medicine at the University of Minho. In this study plan, students interrupt the medical degree at the end of the 5th year to enroll in the PhD program, and conclude the medical training once the PhD is finished. The MD/PhD, which is a pioneering program in Portugal and one of the few in Europe, is done in collaboration with Columbia University (New York City) and Thomas Jefferson University (Philadelphia). More information here.

There are two ways of applying to the PhD in Medicine.

Spontaneous application

Always open.

1st step: contact and send your CV; an interview will be scheduled with the director of the program;

2nd step: interview. During the interview a possible PhD project, advisors, and the methods are discussed. A formal PhD project is to be prepared and defended in front of a jury that includes members of the PhD program directive board.

3rd step: the PhD project is submitted for final approval by the Scientific Council of the Medical School.

Application to a published notice:

These applications take place whenever scholarships are available for this effect.

In these cases, the application (which is only for medical students at University of Minho) must be completed following the guidelines and timing specified in the program's webpage at



Academic degree:
  • Doctorate
8 curricular semesters
Gualtar Campus, Braga
Main Scientific area:
  • Medicine


    School of Medicine
    Campus de Gualtar
    4710 - 057 Braga

    Tel: 253604832 Fax: 253604847


This program is intended to prepare doctors in health sciences and in medicine, ready to develop autonomously biomedical and clinical research, both in the academic environment or within health care institutions. The PhD program in Medicine offers two study plans: one of 180 ECTS that corresponds to the thesis project; and another of 240 ECTS that includes, in addition, a core curriculum (60 ECTS).
In 2013 FCT recognized the quality of the PhD in Medicine with the award of 5 annual grants to the MD / PhD program of the School of Health Sciences. Created in 2006, is a pioneer program in Portugal and one of the few in Europe and It represents a unique opportunity and alternative for ECS medical students to get formally involved in biomedical / clinical research even before their career as doctors.
This PhD program takes place in the School of Health Sciences and in its associated research institute, the Life and Health Sciences Research Institute (ICVS), a research unit evaluated as Excellent by the international evaluation committee. Please consult the corresponding webpage for details:

Access to higher education

The conclusion of this Doctoral degree allows the realization of research activity at post-doctoral level.






Access forms

Access to this cycle of studies requires an application to the Health Sciences School of the University of Minho.

STEP 1: contact the program secretariat ( to manifest their interest and to schedule an interview with the program director;

STEP 2: send the requested documents and information to the program secretariat;

STEP 3: the course comission will evaluate the application and appoint an interview with the candidate.Approval by this committee precedes submission for evaluation at the scientific council.

Formal requirements

Candidates must fulfill one of the following requirements:

a) Holders of a master degree or legally equivalent qualification in the field of Medicine;
b) Holders of a higher education degree in the field of Medicine and a relevant academic or scientific curriculum acknowledged by the Scientific Council of the School of Health Sciences, University of Minho as ensuring capability to undertake this cycle of studies;
c) Holders of an academic, scientific or professional curriculum acknowledged by the Scientific Council of the School of Health Sciences, University of Minho as ensuring capability to undertake this cycle of studies.

Application deadlines

Applications can be submitted any time throughout the year.

Registration deadlines

Registration for the 1st year 
- 30 days after admission
Renewals registration
- In September each year

Aditional Information

Study Plan

Regime Curricular Unit Scientific Area ECTS
Year 1 15
S1 Preparation and Presentation of Thesis Plan MED 15
Year 1 2 3 165
TA Thesis MED 165


A3ES Accreditation status:
Resolution publication date:
Registry number at Ministry:
R/A-Ef 2407/2011
Registry Date:
Accreditation validity: