Before submitting the equivalence application of a foreign qualification at the academic level of doctorate, applicants must contact the UPF department which deals with the same knowledge field as the research of the doctoral thesis, for which a doctoral degree has been awarded, and which is the subject of the equivalence procedure. This UPF department will have to provide a letter of recommendation which is essential for submitting the corresponding application, together with the rest of the required documentation.


Where to submit and certify documents

Documentation will be certified at the University Registry or through the means stated in Law 39/2015, of 1 October.


         Equivalence application of a foreign qualification at the academic level of doctorate

  • Document that certifies the identity and nationality of the applicant (certified photocopy of applicant’s DNI or passport).
  • Letter of recommendation from the UPF department which deals with the same knowledge field as the research of the doctoral thesis, for which a doctoral degree has been awarded, and which is the subject of the equivalence procedure signed by the departament director.
  • Applicant’s CV in Catalan, Spanish or English.
  • Certified copy of the diploma which is object of equivalence, duly legalised, or of the accrediting certification of the issue of the diploma, duly legalised.
  • Certified copy of the academic certification of studies completed by the applicant in order to obtain their doctoral degree, which contains, among other elements, the official length of the study programme followed, in academic years.
  • Certificate which includes the date of the thesis defense, the members of the examination board and the qualification obtained.
  • Explanatory report on the completed thesis, written in Catalan, Spanish or English, of at least 10 pages.
  • A bound copy of the thesis.


The evaluation committee may require, in addition, other documents they consider necessary to accredit equivalence between the work carried out to obtain the submitted foreign diploma and that which is demanded to obtain the Spanish doctoral degree, which is object of equivalence.

Any submitted documents from abroad must be official and issued by the competent authorities, in accordance with the legal framework of the country in question. Furthermore, they must be legalised through diplomatic channels or, if applicable, through the Apostille Convention of The Hague. This requirement is not mandatory for documents issued by authorities of the member states of the European Union or signatories of the agreement on the European Economic Area.

Any official documents that are not in Catalan or Spanish must be accompanied by an official translation, except for the documents already submitted in English.

If there are any doubts regarding the authenticity, validity or content of the submitted documents, the evaluation committee can take the necessary steps for its verification; as well as contacting the competent authority that issued such documents to verify any dubious aspects.



Applicants must pay the corresponding public price at the beginning of the equivalence procedure. The amount is established by the Price decree of the Generalitat de Catalunya  for providing this service.  The payment proof of this amount is a necessary requirement to begin processing the application. Payment must be made to the current account of the banking entity indicated in the application form through a cashpoint deposit.

Under no circumstance will the applicant be returned the amount paid for starting the equivalence procedure.


Resolution deadline

The deadline for deciding and notifying the procedure’s resolution is six months from the date the University receives the application and the required documentation.

The absence of an express resolution in the established time frame indicates that the equivalence application has been rejected.

A favourable resolution to the requested equivalence declaration will be accredited with the appropriate credentials.

The fee for issuing the accreditive credential of the declaration of equivalence of a foreign degree at doctorate level is that which is established by the Price decree of the Generalitat de Catalunya.


Application forms:


UPF regulations

Regulations on the procedure for the declaration of equivalence of a qualification at the academic level of doctorate issued by foreign universities (agreement of the Board of Governors of 17 October 2018)


State university legislation

Royal Decree 967/2014, of 21 November, which establishes the requirements and procedures for the official recognition and declaration of equivalence for qualifications and at official university academic level for the validation of foreign higher education studies, and the procedure for determining the correspondence of levels in the Spanish higher education qualifications system for the official qualifications of architect, engineer, undergraduate degree, technical architect, technical engineer and diplomat

For more information:

Academic Management Service
Edifici Jaume I (Ciutadella campus)
Ramon Trias Fargas, 25-27
08005 Barcelona
Telephone: 93 542 18 54
Fax: 93 542 25 77

(*) Please read the regulations in full