The organisation of the DIPE revolves two axes: education and training activities aimed to promote the acquisition and development of general and specific competences included in the program, on one side; the realisation of an original research project, leading to the achievement of the Doctor in Philosophy degree, on the other.
The activities of research training deal with disciplinary and methodological knowledge of the field of educational psychology; they may adopt different formats (seminars, courses, workshops, conferences, etc.). At the beginning of each course, the Coordination Committee elaborates the program and schedule of activities, indicating in each case the nature, the format and the compulsory/optional character of each item. Despite yearly changes, the program includes two fix seminars dedicated respectively to (1) the review of the state of the art of relevant lines of research in educational psychology, at a national and international level (by teams and responsible authors); and (2) the presentation, analysis and discussion of progress reports of the doctoral theses in progress (by doctoral students).
The DIPE students develop their own research leading to the degree of Doctor in Philosophy embedded in the research activity of the participating research groups, and within the research lines that they might offer. The doctoral students carry out their research under the supervision of one of the professors of the program.
During the first year, the students must elaborate a doctoral thesis project, which must be approved by the Academic Committee. Once the project is approved and the supervisor and evaluation committee assigned, the students will have a maximum of four academic courses to carry out the research project if the thesis is inscribed as “full time” dedication. The thesis might also be inscribed as “part time” dedication (less than 20 hours a week dedicated to research); in this case, the time at disposal increases proportionally. The finished thesis must be positively evaluated by the supervisor, the evaluating committee, and the Academic Committee. Only after this series of positive reports, the thesis might be defended in a public act, before a final evaluation panel. The panel will decide upon suitability of the doctoral candidate to achieve the PhD degree.