General contents

PIUDHist is a PhD programme with 240 ECTS. Students are supposed to complete a dissertation by the end of the 4th year of registration. The first year (60 ECTS) corresponds to advanced learning in the field of History – in an interdisciplinary vein – and to the preparation of the dissertation project. The remaining 3 years (180 ECTS) correspond to research and to the writing of the dissertation, this process being subject to permanent monitoring.

1st semester:

Methodology Seminar (compulsory) – 6 ECTS

2 Specialized Seminars (optional, from a list of 4) – 12 ECTS (6+6)

Research Design I (compulsory) – 12 ECTS

2nd semester:

2 Specialized Seminars (optional, from a list of 4) – 12 ECTS (6+6)

Research Design II (compulsory) – 18 ECTS

3rd to 8th semester:

Monitoring Seminar – 6 ECTS

Dissertation – 24 ECTS

The compulsory Methodology Seminar seeks to update and increase knowledge of the main issues and research problems in crucial historiographical areas, taking into account the thematic axes of PIUDHIST. Interdisciplinary inputs and contributions from the social sciences will deserve keen attention and students will be constantly invited to enlarge the scope of their immediate research interests. Teaching will be geared to the latest historiographical developments as recognized by the scientific community. It is hoped that students will thus become familiar with the most recent trends and accustomed to keeping in constant contact with the leading international journals and most relevant new books in their fields and related areas.

The Specialized Seminars are offered in a rather flexible way within each of the four thematic axes – social dynamics and political structures; institutions and economic development; empires, colonialism and post-colonialism; intellectual and socio­cultural movements. The seminars run through the 2 semesters of the first year and students choose 2 seminars per semester in at least two different thematic axes. The topics of the seminars will vary each year, depending on both the availability of teaching resources and the revealed preferences of the students at the admission stage. Students will be encouraged to attend external conferences and workshops on issues related to the topics of the seminars. In special cases, students may replace one of the seminars with an optional graduate course offered by any of the host institutions on a subject considered relevant to the PhD dissertation project.

The Research Design I and II courses are compulsory and run through the 2 semesters of the first year, corresponding to a total of 30 ECTS. Their main objective is to prepare and support students in the drawing up of their dissertation projects, which should be ready to be submitted in a public session, before a jury, at the end of the second semester. By attending these courses, students are expected: 1) to improve their knowledge of the theoretical framework and appropriate methodological approaches; 2) to develop soft skills in scientific writing, oral communication, project design and ethical issues in the academic profession.

The Monitoring Seminar (offered from the 3rd to the 8th semester, while the student is devoted to the dissertation) aims to complement the work of the supervisors, by offering the students an opportunity to share the positive and negative outcomes of their research experiences and to gain efficiency in the development of their research plans and schedules.