Honorary academic titles and Honours

Honorary academic titles

Those awarded with an ad honorem degree and/or honorary doctorate degree enjoy all the rights of said degree equal to the qualifications obtained through the usual requirements.

Each year, the University of Padua grants no more than three master's degree titles with a single ad honorem cycle and no more than three honorary doctorates titles offered under respected University department. Only under exceptional circumstances can the number of honorary titles issued be exceeded within the academic year.

To clarify the misconception that the expression "honoris causa" (for the sake of the honour) is different than "ad honorem" (to the honour), and that "ad honorem", is given exclusively to living persons, in reality there is no distinction between the two. Probably the misunderstanding arises from article 331, which considers the possibility of conferring the degree as an honorary title to remember the value of the student who had fallen in combat or any other reasons while defending their homeland, but even in this case one does not make a distinction between the expressions honoris causa and ad honorem.

The University therefore grants two different titles to those in relation to completed works or for publications made.  Such canidates must have gained a reputation for their extraordinary abilities within the disciplines for which they are granted:


In addition to honorary and doctorates degrees, the University of Padua also bestows the title of "Padua Honorary Fellow" as well as granting “University of Padua Medals, both honours are given to Italians and foreigners alike who have internationally distinguished themselves in the arts, sciences, business, economics, society, politics, or culture.

In particular, the Rector, the Board of Directors, or a specific University Department can propose candidates for the “Padua Honorary Fellow” to the Academic Senate. Those who will become an honorary fellow must have carried out activities in favour of the University of Padua or have contributed to, or who have shown the competence to be able to contribute to the prestige of the University through deeds or actions that promote and diffuse its name and reputation locally and, in particular, abroad.

Where as, the Rector awards the “University of Padua Medal” after an individual is proposed by a specific Department Council and after being approved by the Academic Senate. The “University of Padua Medal” is bestowed to those outside the University who have distinguished themselves in fields of cultural, artistic, economic, social, or technical-scientific.

Titles and medals purely hold honorary value with no legal value.