Doctorate Program in Canon Law

Submission of applications:
Throughout the year.

3/5 years (Full-time/Part-time study)

Alberto Aguilera 23, Madrid

Open Days


Information session




The objective of the Doctorate Program in Canon Law is to produce qualified experts who combine an extensive command of a particular topic with the use of appropriate scientific methodology and the skills to contribute to expanding their chosen area of knowledge with an original piece of doctoral research. This research can be carried out in any field of Canon Law.

In order to obtain the doctorate, students must: a) carry out the training activities specifically set out in the doctorate program, which will be reviewed by the tutor and the thesis supervisor and assessed each year by the program's academic commission; and b) develop a research plan. This plan must be designed and presented before the end of the first year (for full-time students) or at the end of the second year (for part-time students).

Program Length:

  • Full-time study: 3 years
  • Part-time study: 5 years

Admission application:

Throughout the year.

Information notice on the documents to be submitted

Enrollment deadlines for 2018-2019:

  • Until September 30, 2018 (first term)
  • Until February 28, 2019 (second term)


The annual fees for the 2018-2019 Doctorate program are:

  • 2 payments of €1,092.50/year for full-time study
  • 2 payments of €927.50/year for part-time study

The follow students have access to third cycle studies:

  • Licentiate Degree holders in Canon Law who studied at faculties canonically established by the relevant ecclesiastical authority.
  • Students who hold higher education qualifications in the same discipline taught at universities not founded by the Roman Catholic Church, upon resolution from the Governing Committee of the International School of Doctorate Studies (RED 3 g) and a mandatory favorable report from the program's academic commission.
  • To be accepted onto the doctorate program at the Faculty of Canon Law, candidates must have passed the licentiate degree with an overall average mark of Outstanding (score of 9 or above) and obtained a mark of Outstanding in the written dissertation for this degree.
  • In special circumstances, the academic commission will grant admission to candidates with a slightly lower average.
  • The Academic Commission will determine if the student needs to complete complementary training modules and will decide on the appropriate training at the beginning of the program.
  • Admission to third cycle studies is determined by the Rector or the person he appoints to this task, based on a proposal made by the academic commission, with approval from the Dean.


PhD Program Coordinator
Profª Dra. Elisa Estévez López
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Contact person:
Profª Dra. María Cristina Guzmán Pérez (member of the Doctorate Academic Commission)
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c/ Alberto Aguilera, 23. 28015 Madrid
Tel.: (+34) 91 540 61 52
Fax: (+34) 91 542 21 93

This doctorate program is structured around the main lines of research pursued at the Faculty of Canon Law:



  • Canon Law in the presence of new ecclesial and social realities
  • Marriage and canonical matrimonial causes
  • The People of God and their legal structure
  • Processes within the Church
  • Contribution from Spanish Canonists to the development of canonical science
  • Ecclesial life and canonical issues


  • Comparative concordat law
  • Legal framework for relations between the Catholic Church and the Spanish State
  • Religious factor, society and law
  • Religious matrimony in the Spanish Civil Code

The following guide shows the detailed steps that students must follow to register the activities that they carry out during their Doctoral studies: Guide to Managing Doctoral Activities for the Student.

Training Activities Doctorate Program in Canon Law




The course can be studied on a full-time basis (3 years) or a part-time basis (5 years). Students will develop a set of research activities which will be spread between the years of study according to their Personalized Activity Log, agreed upon with their tutor and supervisor, with the final aim of completing the doctoral thesis.

Basic Skills click here


The doctorate program includes research training activities which are allocated throughout the studies and which incorporate both transversal and specific training. They will be composed of courses, workshops, seminars, attendance at conferences, etc.


Once enrolled on the program, a personalized doctoral activity log will be created for each student. All research interests and activities pursued during the program will be recorded in this log. The log will be checked regularly by the tutor and/or thesis supervisor and assessed by the Program's Academic Commission.


By the end of the first year (for full-time students) or by the end of the second year (for part-time students), the student will have created a research plan which must be approved by the tutor and thesis supervisor and favorably assessed by the department in which the program is taught.

In the first year of the course, and according to their previous training in research methods, students will take the complementary training modules deemed necessary by the Academic Commission during the admission process.


© Universidad Pontificia Comillas | C. Alberto Aguilera 23 Madrid-28015 - Tel.:(+34) 91 542 28 00

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