Faculty of Mathematics, Physics
and Informatics
Comenius University Bratislava

Computer Science

Doctoral Degree Program

Field:

Computer Science

Form:

full time / external

Usual duration:

full time form 4 years, external form 5 years

Language of courses:

English

Program director:

prof. RNDr. Rastislav Kráľovič, PhD.

Co-Guarantors:

doc. Mgr. Bronislava Brejová, PhD.
prof. Ing. Igor Farkaš, Dr.
prof. RNDr. Roman Ďurikovič, PhD.
doc. RNDr. Edita Mačajová, PhD.

Related study programs: master's degree programs Computer ScienceApplied Informatics

Description of the Study Program

The main goal of the third degree of the Informatics study programme is to prepare students for independent scientific and research work in the field of informatics, whether in an academic environment or in corporate development teams. The focus is on the ability to independently analyse and solve scientific and technical problems which, due to their complexity and difficulty, represent the limits of current knowledge.

Graduates of the program possess an extensive portfolio of mathematical techniques that allow them to formalize and then rigorously investigate and analyze even non-standard complex systems. They have deep theoretical and methodological knowledge of the key areas of computer science, corresponding to the current level of the research. In the focus area of their dissertation, graduates are proficient in the latest scientific techniques and procedures, and are familiar with the current state of research and development at the frontiers of the state of the art. They understand the connections and relationships among different areas of computer science and IT practice, and can apply thier insight to solve specific problems.

The study enables students to engage in research at the top international level, while mastering the principles of independent and team-based scientific work, the methodology of scientific research, the methods of formalizing problems and formulating results. They learn to publish their results in the form of a scientific text, and present them to the international scientific community. Participation in teaching activities is also an important part of the study, where the students acquire the ability to present complex results clearly, and comprehensibly, to formulate and communicate them appropriately.

The program provides students with the opportunity to specialize in a wide range of areas, from the mathematical foundations of computer science, through theoretical computer science, application areas such as computer security, computer vision, and the semantic web, to the latest directions in bioinformatics, machine learning, and computational cognitive science. Graduates of the programme are prepared to develop their discipline as independent researchers, able to lead research teams, follow the latest research trends in their field and formulate new research questions. They are also prepared to creatively apply acquired knowledge and techniques as members of research and development teams to solve practical problems. Their ability to understand and formally describe even non-standard complex systems makes them valuable members of interdisciplinary teams. They will be able to complement and update their knowledge through lifelong learning. They aware of the ethical, legal and social implications of their profession.

What to Expect

A study programme is a set of courses and a set of rules designed in such a way that successful completion of the courses, while observing the stated rules, enables the student to obtain a university degree. For each study programme there is a recommended plan of study, which is designed to ensure that by completing it the student meets the conditions for successful completion of his or her studies within the standard length of the programme.

The curriculum is usually based on the modular (block) principle in order to allow students to continuously modify the focus within the chosen field of study and to expand the scope of study. The curriculum is divided into compulsory, optional and elective courses. Courses are made up of individual particular learning activities or a combination of them, which are aimed at providing education in a defined area. Profile courses of the study plan are compulsory or compulsory elective courses and after their completion the student acquires knowledge and skills that are essential for graduation from the study programme.

Study programmes are augmented by elective courses, reflecting the developments in the field. Elective courses also allow the use of participation of non-faculty experts in the teaching process. The inclusion of more (elective) courses in the programmes is often response to constructive comments from students and their interest in a particular area.

The study part consists of the compulsory courses "Theoretical Foundations of Informatics" (8kr), "Theory and Methodology of Informatics" (10kr), "Specialization Area" (14kr) and "Literature Monitoring and Processing" (10kr) and is concluded with a dissertation examination (20kr). The content of the courses in each year is adapted to the composition of the PhD students; in a particular year, the content of the courses is chosen to convey to the students advanced knowledge of the theoretical principles of computer science and to enable them to gain a deep insight into areas that are broadly related to the area of their dissertation. At the same time, the student should acquire such knowledge in the area of specialization that enables active research in it. Also, the student will acquire the ability to actively follow the latest research developments in the relevant field, to understand, process and present the latest results. In this part of the curriculum, the supervisor may also prescribe the student to take additional courses from other programmes, if they are necessary in relation to the topic of the dissertation.

The scientific part is a key part of the educational process in the study programme, the aim of which is to prepare the student for independent research work. The supervisor plays an essential role here. In the curriculum, this part is represented by the course "Research Activity" in three variants with different credit ratings, which can be taken more than once and the student must obtain at least 50 credits from it. Since the Computer Science programme provides a wide range of specialisations in areas with different publishing habits, the final assignment of credits to specific outputs is determined by the supervisor, who ensures that the student measurably documents the work done, corresponding to the credit allocation. Typically, this includes the publication of technical reports, preprints, publication/submission of papers to conferences and journals, and similar outputs that document the student's progress in the preparation of the dissertation. The student is encouraged to present his/her scientific results at a national or international conference, and the supervisor may take all of these and similar activities into account in the evaluation of scientific activity. Regular active participation in scientific seminars within the relevant department or research group is also an essential part of the scientific training. The student is obliged to participate in a selected seminar according to his/her specialisation (e.g. Computer Security Seminar, Graph Theory Seminar, Theoretical Computer Science Seminar, CNC: Cognition and Neural Computation Seminar, YACGS: "Yet another Computer Graphics Seminar", Bioinformatics Seminar), where active participation is associated with regular presentation of results. Mobility experience through foreign and domestic study stays in scientific and scientific-educational institutions is also encouraged.

Graduates' Career Opportunities

Graduates are primarily employable:

  • in academia as independent researchers or assistant professors. Graduating from the programme and obtaining a PhD enables them to further pursue academic career in universities and research institutes in Slovakia and abroad. 
  • in technology companies and research consortia, where the ability to develop software products using the latest technologies, to react to current research directions, to actively develop them and to transfer them into practice is required from the position of software developer, project manager, manager, consultant, etc.

During the doctoral studies, the student is an important part of the scientific team, where he or she works with the supervisor to solve complex scientific problems. The student is often responsible for managing and solving some of the sub-tasks, which require him/her to be able to organize teamwork (undergraduates and graduates) and to communicate appropriately with team members, and with foreign partners. Therefore, in addition to professional qualities, the student will also acquire auxiliary communication and language skills that can be applied in a wide range of professions.

Doctoral Scholarships

Full-time doctoral students who have permanent residency in the European Union are entitled to receive a scholarship for the entire standard duration of their studies. The scholarships are paid starting on the date of enrollment. The scholarship is determined in accordance with the tables included in the Law no. 553/2003 Z.z. as follows: 

  • prior to completion of the qualification exam: 1025,50 EUR (6th class, 1st level)
  • after successful completion of the qualification exam: 1 194 EUR (7th class, 1st level)

Scholarships are not subject to taxes or other fees.

Doctoral studies are considered an equivalent to full time employment and in the majority of cases cannot be combined with another employment. Job holding applicants who intend to keep their job are advised to apply for the external (distance) form of doctoral studies. Doctoral students enrolled in the regular form are expected to participate in teaching activities such as conducting recitations or exam grading, in accordance with the needs of their corresponding departments.

Thesis Topics for Academic Year 2024/2025

  • Sparse neural networks
    (supervisor: Mgr. Vladimír Boža, PhD.)
  • Models and algorithms for processing large-scale genomic data
    (supervisor: doc. Mgr. Bronislava Brejová, PhD.)
  • Integrative analysis of genomic data in cancer research
    (supervisor: doc. Mgr. Bronislava Brejová, PhD.)
  • Advertisement saliency detection
    (supervisor: doc. RNDr. Zuzana Černeková, PhD.) 
  • Deep learning methods for medical image analysis
    (supervisor: doc. RNDr. Zuzana Černeková, PhD.) 
  • Adaptive multimodal human-robot interaction
    (supervisor: prof. Ing. Igor Farkaš, Dr.)
  • Scene understanding for autonomous robotic manipulation
    (supervisor: prof. Ing. Igor Farkaš, Dr.) 
  • Understanding internal representations in trained neural networks in robotic applications
    (supervisor: prof. Ing. Igor Farkaš, Dr.)
  • Virtual Museum Activisation and Usability
    (supervisor: doc. RNDr. Andrej Ferko, PhD.)
  • Formal methods and security of cyber physical system
    (supervisor: doc. RNDr. Damas Gruska, PhD.)
  • Safety, security, privacy and its quantification
    (supervisor: doc. RNDr. Damas Gruska, PhD.)
  • Formal methods for verifications and specifications of concurrent and parallel systems
    (supervisor: doc. RNDr. Damas Gruska, PhD.)
  • Graphical tools for security systems
    (supervisor: doc. RNDr. Damas Gruska, PhD.)
  • Automated deduction in many-valued logics
    (supervisor: doc. RNDr. Dušan Guller, PhD.) 
  • Models of computation: Non-uniformity and Data-dependence
    (supervisor: prof. RNDr. Rastislav Kráľovič, PhD.)
  • Instance knowledge in online and distributed algorithms
    (supervisor: prof. RNDr. Rastislav Kráľovič, PhD.) 
  • Algorithms on cubic graphs
    (supervisor: doc. RNDr. Robert Lukoťka, PhD.)
  • Nowhere-zero flows on k-poles
    (supervisor: doc. RNDr. Robert Lukoťka, PhD.)
  • Advanced Methods in Development of Large Software Systems
    (supervisor: doc. Ing. Ivan Polášek, PhD.) 
  • Towards an ecologically valid BCI and head-mounted VR system for post-stroke neurorehabilitation
    (supervisor: Ing. Mgr. Roman Rosipal, DrSc.)
  • Computational analysis of bacterial plasmids
    (supervisor: doc. Mgr. Tomáš Vinař, PhD.)
  • Fundamental Properties of Information and Complexity of Problems
    (supervisor: prof. RNDr. Branislav Rovan, PhD.)
  • Realistic 3D Human Avatars based on Parametric Modelling and Deep Generative Models
    (supervisor: doc. RNDr. Martin Madaras, PhD.)
  • Utilization of artificial intelligence to automate processing and analysis of optical spectra
    (supervisor: prof. RNDr. Roman Ďurikovič, PhD.)
  • Automatic detection of dangerous cloud types
    (supervisor: prof. RNDr. Roman Ďurikovič, PhD.)
  • Science Image Recognition Algorithms for all-sky Meteor Camera Systems
    (supervisor: prof. RNDr. Roman Ďurikovič, PhD.)