Before You Apply

  1. Choose one of 16 doctoral study programmes, in which the dean of the Second Faculty of Medicine of the Charles University lists the admission procedure for the academic year 2023/2024.
  2. Choose a preliminary theme of your dissertation thesis and contact the possible supervisor. Together, create a more detailed specification of your chosen topic. In case of any ambiguity, we recommend that you also contact the chairman of the subject area board (SAB) in the relevant study programme. Contacts are available in the section “Dates of entrance interviews”.
  3. Also read the relevant regulations concerning the doctoral study programme and the conditions for admission to the relevant doctoral study programme.

Frequently asked questions (FAQ)


How to decide – is doctoral study suitable for me?

Yes – if you want to pursue research in your future career or continue working in academia and want to devote a reasonable part of your working time to the next few years of experimental work. This requires constant motivation for the area you are interested in and you will want to devote yourself deeply to it for four years and sacrifice a lot of your time. Furthermore, you cannot do without interest in learning new knowledge and skills (deep understanding of theories, advanced scientific methods, writing articles, etc.), self-discipline, strong will and motivation to complete projects, willingness to work with colleagues (on projects, grants and publications), desire to move knowledge further, patience in the study of literature and courage in the preparation of project applications and sending professional articles for review.

No – if you are just looking for an opportunity to get to one of the Prague clinics. You should focus on experimental (laboratory) work and not on treating patients. The time spent in scientific preparation will not be included in the specialized preparation for attestation. A certain exception to how to combine specialization and scientific training is the “M.D. Ph.D. programme” (see below).

Who is the doctoral study intended for?

The main objective is to raise educated clinical experts with knowledge of the basics of scientific work. Academic careers (in terms of working in the clinics of teaching hospitals) will in the future be the domain of people who have completed their doctoral studies. Thus, doctoral studies are in no way intended for those who want to pursue laboratory medicine or theoretical and preclinical disciplines in the future.

You can apply for a full-time form of study (you already have a job and you will devote yourself to scientific training at work) or part-time (you will devote yourself to full-time scientific training for a certain period of time).

The doctoral student enrolled in the full-time form of study is a full-time student of the faculty and fully participates in professional life at the training workplace, receives a scholarship, uses all social benefits and rights of a full-time student at Charles University.

The doctoral student enrolled in the combined (part-time) form of study is usually a full-time employee and is not entitled to the benefits provided by the university to full-time students (scholarship, dormitory accommodation, canteen, etc.).

The standard study period for all study programs is four years (according to accreditation). The maximum period of study is the standard period of this study increased by four years, i.e. eight years.

How to find out about study opportunities?

Detailed information on individual doctoral study programs implemented at the Second Faculty of Medicine CU can be found in the Doctoral study programmes section. After clicking on the items, the requirements of the relevant SABs and contacts to their chairmen will be displayed, which you can possibly contact with additional questions that you will not find the answer to on the website.

During your studies you will complete compulsory subjects by attending lectures, seminars, self-study or consultations. You will agree on the form of completion with the supervisor and the guarantor of the subject.

The information should also be available on the website of the Coordination board DSPB (unfortunately, however, they are often outdated or incomplete).

Which study program to choose?

This depends, of course, on the professional interest of the applicant. Some disciplines are very broad (e.g. immunology, physiology or molecular biology) and can be practiced by a doctor focused on almost any clinical discipline. On the contrary, fields such as experimental surgery or gerontology are relatively narrowly defined.

It is important to choose the right supervisor, to choose a quality project with him and to know in advance all the conditions (as well as potential problems) of the study and its successful completion.

How to choose a suitable supervisor?

If you have attended a workplace at least during the last years, you have an advantage. If you have done so for a long time, you have a great advantage and you probably do not need advice on choosing a supervisor and a project.

Whether you choose a supervisor yourself or one approaches you, check his/her scientific competence. Choose a supervisor whose professional interests correspond to your interests, we recommend looking at his publishing activities and experience with scientific projects. You can do it easily: you enter the name of your potential supervisor in the PubMed programme and check whether he/she has published in foreign journals over the past three years. Basically, the more publications, the better. Your chosen one should be (at least in some publications for the period) either the first or the last author. This expresses his contribution to the published project. The quality of the journal (expressed by the size of the impact factor – again, the higher, the better) can be found in the library (approach PhDr. R. Kubeš from the Institute of Scientific Information, Second Faculty of Medicine) or you can find it yourself on the ISI WoK website (only via the Second Faculty of Medicine server).

The supervisor must be approved by the SAB – the criteria for admitting new tutors are determined by the individual SABs. During the study, the dissertation can be discussed with other experts who are not supervisors (there is always only one supervisor), but can act as advisors. The advisor may participate in specific areas of the student's research. Only the supervisor is really responsible for the student and is partner to the SAB.

As a selection tool, we prepared for you a list of supervisors acting in individual SABs. What can you find in it? Contacts, publications and possibly proposed topics of dissertations. In the SIS, each supervisor’s details list names of current students, as well as those who have successfully completed or, on the contrary, left their studies.

Applicants who are unsure of which supervisor to select are advised to contact the chairman of the SAB in the relevant study programme, with whom they consult the chosen topic and a possible supervisor. Contacts are available in the section “Dates of entrance interviews”.

The choice of supervisor in the application form is preliminary and has no impact on the assessment during the entrance examination. The examining board may propose a different supervisor following a discussion with the applicant.

How to choose the topic of the dissertation?

Choose the topic you are most interested in, develop an initial idea of how you would like to grasp the topic and contact a potential supervisor. You then discuss the text directly with him/her. You can also design your own topic, but it is usually better to choose from the topics offered by individual tutors and specify them after agreement with him/her.

The project should be sufficiently ambitious (see the defence criteria below), but at the same time achievable at the time designated for the study.

How to successfully complete the admission procedure?

You must submit the application and by the deadline and come to the admission procedure. This is listed by each SAB separately (all information appears on our website in a timely manner).

The entrance examination consists of a professional discussion on the dissertation project. It is important to have a very good orientation in the issues you want to research (i.e. especially knowledge of relevant and current scientific articles in top international scientific journals). You must be able to defend the expected benefits of the work and convince the commission of the feasibility of the plan. Part of the discussion during the interview may be in English for some study programmes. This verifies the applicant's ability to study in English and subsequently lead a relevant professional discussion. English cannot be replaced by another language.

How can I get a scholarship?

Full-time students are entitled to a doctoral scholarship for the entire standard period of study, i.e. four years. The current amount in accordance with the regulations of the Charles University and the Second Faculty of Medicine can be found here. They also have the right to obtain dormitory accommodation and all student benefits. The scholarship is progressively increased in accordance with the fulfilment of study obligations; the student can also increase the income of the full-time form from the remuneration of the supervisor's grants, by obtaining his own grant from the CU Grant Agency or in another way.

What do I have to do to get a Ph.D.?

The basic criteria are determined by The Higher Educational Act and the Code of Study and Examination of CU. However, the individual SABs further modify the criteria. It is therefore good to check them in advance (the supervisor should of course know them). You can find the specific requirements of specific SABs here.

The basic criteria of the study part are:

  • completion of the prescribed number of courses (or passing examinations) according to the individual study plan
  • passing the language examination (English)
  • passing the state doctoral examination

The basic (minimum) criteria for admission to the defence are:

  •  two publications in a journal with an impact factor, one of which must relate to the topic of the work 
  • on at least one of them the student is the first author
  • the sum of the impact factor of publications is higher than 1

Keep in mind, however, that the requirements of individual SABs may differ in dates of tightening (i.e. more publications, more first authorship, higher impact factor), and therefore it is necessary to follow the instructions of the relevant SAB dates.

What exactly does “M.D. Ph.D. programme” mean?

The University Hospital in Motol (on the initiative of the Deputy Minister for Science and the Director) established the first programme in the country, “M.D. Ph.D.” studies. This is not a real "M.D. Ph.D. a study programme" known from American universities, but a combination of doctoral (Ph.D.) and specialization (“M.D.”). Students who are interested in combining preparation for attestation with doctoral study programme must pass an entrance examination in the full-time form of doctoral study programme (so they will secure the scientific part of the preparation and also a scholarship). Then they can register for special entrance examinations, which are organized by the Second Faculty of Medicine CU together with the Motol University Hospital. In them, a certain number of applicants is selected (so far it was ten students a year), who will receive part-time work from Motol University Hospital for a period of five years. Thus, they are practically allowed to devote approximately half of each year to specialization education (i.e. preparation for attestation). At the same time, this regulation allows the student, together with his/her supervisor and a representative of the relevant clinic (usually the primary care provider) to determine the work programme himself/herself. The hospital workload is not taken from the job limit of the relevant clinic and the student is thus not tied only to the given clinic – he/she can fulfil his/her obligations arising from the pre-certification preparation. The new legislation allows only the actual time spent in clinical work to be included in this preparation. It is therefore not possible to assume that within five years the student will achieve the defence of a Ph.D. and pass the attestation examination. However, it is also a significant step forward in this direction and it can be reasonably assumed that clinics will be very interested in offering regular work to doctors with a Ph.D. and completed a significant part of the specialization training.

At present, however, Motol hospital only lists a limited number of positions for specific fields, which it considers a priority.

The programme is intended for top students, from whom we expect that they will continuously fulfil their study and scientific duties. A mandatory prerequisite is obtaining a GA CU grant (also because the scholarship will be paid only for the first five years) and publishing your own results during the first two years of study (e.g. in a domestic journal). The course of study is evaluated once a year by a joint commission of the Second Faculty of Medicine CU and the University Hospital Motol, and students who do not fulfil the programme may have their hospital job taken away.

Applications for the M.D. Ph.D. programme are delivered to Mrs. Martina Pavlíková at the Secretariat of the Deputy Minister for Science and Research, which is located in the hostel E (1st floor, room no.140), phone 224 437 181. Please contact her with any questions about the admission procedure. Admission to MD. Ph.D. programme takes place exclusively at Motol University Hospital and is not provided by the Second Faculty of Medicine of Charles University.



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Last update: 22. 1. 2024 / Mgr. Petr Andreas, Ph.D.