Scientific and complementary training
The PhD in Neuroscience aims to form scholars able to develop and carry out independent research in the field of neuroscience. A major goal is to provide conceptual knowledge and methodological tools to deal with the bewildering complexity of the nervous system and to combine basic scientific aspects with applied research of translational and clinical value.
The Study Plan of the PhD Programme in Neuroscience includes both theoretical and experimental training. Students are required to acquire 240 ECTS credits (60 credits per year), including credits of research activity and credits of scientific and complementary training activities. Credits from theoretical activities should conform to the general Syllabus (open in new) designed to help students in planning their assignments. Students are required to report all attended educational activities in their personal Portfolio. In any case, activities chosen by the students are subject to validation by the tutor.
The main activity of PhD students is to carry out their doctoral research. Each student will be supervised by a tutor, possibly benefiting from the partnership of a co-tutor. The Academic Board is responsible for assigning the research project and the tutor at the beginning of the doctoral course. Tutors are expected to offer scientific insights and guidance and provide adequate tools for carrying out research in an international dimension. As part of their training, students will be required to present their research during seminars or at scientific conferences. Students are strongly encouraged to spend part of their PhD abroad, taking advantage of the relationships that the Scientific Board maintains with foreign research institutes.
The PhD in Neuroscience is an intrinsically multidisciplinary course, enrolling students with different backgrounds and experiences. Therefore, PhD students will need to attend courses and seminars held by experts from different areas to become acquainted with different fields of enquiry and methodologies. Theoretical activities include both basic and advanced courses and should be preferably followed during the first and second year of the Doctoral programme (see Syllabus). The list of courses, seminars and workshops is made available every year and is provided here (link a Courses).
Students will also be encouraged to participate in educational activities outside the Doctoral course, including scientific conferences, workshops and summer schools, as well as to take an active role in the organization of in-house meetings and other scientific events.
Training activities complementary to research are made available to PhD students to increase their networking and communication capacities and improve career opportunities in the academic and non-academic environments.
Examples of such complementary learning include:
- advanced scientific English
- communication and public engagement
- methods for bibliographic research
- biostatistics and data management
- research ethics
- enhancement of research and intellectual property
The PhD School manages some of these activities. For more information, visit: https://www.dottorato.unito.it/do/home.pl/View?doc=formazione_complementare.html
Progress in the research plan is evaluated by the PhD scientific board based on written reports (yearly) and oral presentations (at the end of the first year and during the last year). At the end of each academic year (1st,2nd and 3rd year), students are required to submit to the scientific board a written report describing their research activity as well as formative activities they have attended (Annual Report). At the end of the first year, students also give oral presentations in which they present their research project to the scientific board and to other students.
To be admitted to thesis defense, each student is expected to have published as first author at least one publication related to the thesis in an indexed journal. The scientific board deliberates admission to thesis defense based on a written report (Pre-Thesis Report) and an oral progress report. See deadlines for submission of reports and the progress report schedule (link to Deadlines opens in new page)
Students who have been admitted to thesis defense are requested to send the final draft of their thesis to the PhD coordinator. The thesis should be accompanied by a brief summary (link in open page to file Pre-thesis_Report) and a list of publications. The coordinator will submit the thesis to two external reviewers. Reviewers, who should also be members of the thesis defense committee, are expected to submit their report within one month.
Students can choose to include publications as part of their thesis. In this case, each publication should be accompanied by an introduction and conclusion, in order to place the publication within the structure of the thesis. Submitted and in proof articles should be included in a format comparable to monograph thesis content.