Law 6/2001, of December 21, of Universities, as written according to the same by Law 4/2007 of April 12, which modifies the previous, defines the structure of University Education into three cycles: Bachelor, Master and Doctorate.
R.D. 99/2011, of January 28, which regulates the official education of Doctorate, in its article 2.1., defines the doctorate as the third cycle of the official university studies, leading to the acquisition of competences and skills related to scientific research of quality.

The regulation of the Doctoral studies is based on the following legal texts:
R.D. 99/2011, of January 28, by which regulates the official doctoral studies, modified by R.D. 534/2013, of July, 12.
Regulation of Doctoral Studies of the University of Castilla-La Mancha (Agreement of Governing Council November 20, 2012)
You can view other regulatory provisions on the following link: http://www.uclm.es/organos/vic_investigacion/doctorado/normativa.asp
New PhD students will be accepted in programs regulated by R.D. 99/2011 and R.D. 1393/2007 programs. When programs regulated by previous laws coexist with other already verified equivalent under RD 99/2011, applicants will enter in these programs, being the latest to extinguish programs.
The Doctoral studies are organized by doctoral programs. Each program develops a set of activities leading to the acquisition of the necessary competences and skills to obtain title of Doctor. These studies conclude with the elaboration and defense of a doctoral thesis which has original research results.
One of the innovations introduced by the RD 99/2011 is the maximum term in which a PhD student must complete his/her Doctoral studies, distinguishing two possibilities. If the PhD student is enrolled full time the maximum term is three years with two extensions of one-year each. If he/she is enrolled part-time, the term is 5 years with two extensions, the first two years and the second a year.
In general, to access a PhD program in their training term, it is necessary to be in possession of the official Spanish Bachelor’s degree (or equivalent) and Master’s degree . They may access those who are in any of the following circumstances:
– Being in possession of a university certificate for access to Master and have completed a minimum of 300 ECTS, of which at least 60 must be at Master’s level.
– Being in possession of a Bachelor’s degree with duration of at least 300 ECTS and take appropriate additional training, unless the completed studies include credits of research equivalent to the Master’s.
– University graduates in the fields of Health Sciences.
– Being in possession of a foreign university degree, having verified that it accredits a level equivalent to Masters and empowering access to Doctoral studies in the country that issued the qualification for admission to doctoral studies. This admission does not imply, in any case, the approval of the prior title that is held by the applicant or its recognition for other purposes than access to Doctoral studies.
– Being in possession of another Spanish title of Doctor obtained under previous university arrangements..
Once admitted to the doctoral program, each PhD student will be assigned a tutor, doctor with accredited research experience who will ensure correspond interaction of the PhD student with the academic doctoral committee.
No later than six months after his/her enrollment, the academic committee responsible of the program will assign to each PhD student a director of the thesis (may coincide with the tutor). It can be any Spanish or foreign doctor, with verified research experience, regardless of University, School or Institution in which he/she works. The director of the thesis will be in charge of the consistency and suitability of all activities related to the doctoral thesis.
The thesis may be co-directed by up to three doctors when there are academic reasons such as may be the case of the interdisciplinary thematic or programs develop in national or international collaboration, with the authorization of the academic committee.
The doctoral thesis will consist of an original research paper elaborated by the PhD student in any field of knowledge. The thesis must train to PhD student for self-employment in the field of R+D+i.
UCLM ensure the publication of the completed doctoral thesis so that during the evaluating process, and for the public act of the defense, other doctors may explain their comments on its contents.
The thesis may be developed and, if necessary, defended, in the usual language for scientific communication in their field of knowledge.
The tribunal which evaluates the doctoral thesis will be composed of three members, two of whom must be independent of UCLM. All of them must be in possession of title of Doctor and have verified research experience.
The doctoral thesis will be evaluated in the act of defense to be held in a public session and consist of the presentation and defense of the research work elaborated by PhD student in front of the members of tribunal.
The mention ‘International Doctor’ will be included in the obverse of the title of Doctor, provided the following conditions:
– The PhD student must have completed a stay of at least three months out of Spain in an institution of higher education or renowned research center, studying or conducting research works.
– Part of the thesis (at least the summary and the conclusions) must have been filed in any common languages for scientific communication in his/her field of knowledge different from official languages in Spain. This rule shall not apply when the stays, repots and experts come from a Spanish-speaking country.
– The thesis has been informed by at least two expert doctors in institutions of higher education or non- Spanish research.
– At least one expert Doctor belonging to an institution of higher education or non-Spanish research different from the mentioned in the previous paragraph must be served on the Tribunal of Thesis evaluator.

In this case, the defense of doctoral thesis must always be carried out at the University in which the PhD student had made the enrolment or, if joint PhD programs, in any of the participating universities.