About the Doctoral Programme

Study Plan

UPEACE Doctoral Degree Programme

General Information

The UPEACE Doctoral Programme is an advanced degree to develop in-depth research expertise and prepare students for a life of scholarship in an academic discipline related to irenology. It seeks to provide students with a holistic and interdisciplinary theoretical understanding of diverse themes and problems in peace and conflict studies, as well as strategies in peacebuilding.

The programme offers a broad range of research foci and specializations including, though not limited to, environmental security, gender, international law, peace and conflict studies, media, peace education, and sustainable development.

Interested students can choose to enroll in one of the two modalities offered by UPEACE:

  • Full-time: this modality is designed to be completed in three years and requires candidates to remain in Costa Rica for the duration of the programme, except when completing data collection, if necessary.
  • Part-time: this modality is designed to be completed in four years, and can be chosen by students who prefer to stay in their country of residence and who may choose to continue working while they complete their research, albeit on a reduced schedule.

Because the Doctoral Programme seeks to develop research expertise, both modalities require a high level of academic rigor and are held to the same high standard.

Independently of the modality chosen, at the end of the programme students will have developed a sophisticated understanding of research practices and methodologies, will have internalized sound scholarly value and academic integrity, and will have begun to develop a record of published research and conference presentations.

Upon successful graduation from the UPEACE Doctoral Programme, students will obtain the title of “Doctor of Philosophy”, and they will be prepared for university teaching, research, or advanced positions in Peace and Conflict Studies-related professional fields.

Eligibility and Admission

The minimum academic level for a candidate entering the UPEACE Doctoral Programme is a Master’s degree or its equivalent.

UPEACE only accepts applications in electronic format through our on-line application form on a rolling basis. Applicants are therefore advised to first collect all supporting documents and other required information before submitting the form. The documentation and information provided in an application reflects on the quality of the applicant. It is not acceptable to misrepresent accomplishments, borrow from the works of others without proper acknowledgment, or to submit material that has been written, re-written, or heavily edited by others. Breaches of these protocols will result in immediate rejection of the application.

Each application must include:

  1. Statement of Purpose. If you want to request an additional scholarship, please include it in this document. Also, if you are interested in working with a specific professor/faculty member, please indicate it in your statement.
  2. Letters of Recommendation
  3. Official Graduate Transcripts and Copy of Graduate Diploma (Master’s degree)
  4. Publication/Writing Sample.
  5. Concept Paper.
  6. Curriculum Vitae or Résumé
  7. Financial Form
  8. Copy of Passport
  9. Passport Size Photo
  10. English Proficiency Test Scores Report (TOEFL, IELTS). This is only required for applicants from non-English-speaking countries.

For detailed admissions information, click here.

Application Periods

The Doctoral Committee will review application on three occasions annually.

  • 15 September
  • 15 March

Only applications completed before those days will be considered in the Doctoral Committee Admissions Meeting. All admitted students will begin their research in June.

For more information on the application process, please review the application guide here or contact doctorate@upeace.org  or dccoordinator@upeace.org.