In 2011, the Campeonato Brasileiro Série C, the third level of the Brazilian League, will be contested by 20 clubs divided in four groups, followed by a playoff round, during July 16 and November 13. The top four clubs, the ones which qualifies to the semiifinals, will be promoted to the Campeonato Brasileiro Série B to be contested in 2012. Meanwhile, the bottom four clubs, the ones that finish in last place of each group, will be relegated to 2012 Série D.
First Stage: The 20 teams are divided in four groups of 5, playing within them in a double round-robin format. The two best ranked in each group advance towards next stage. The last placed team in each group is relegated to Série D 2012
Second Stage: The eight qualified teams are divided in two groups of 4, playing within them in a double round-robin format. The two best ranked in each group are promoted to Série B 2012.Winners qualify to the Finals.
Finals: Second stage winners play in two-leg format, home and away. Winners are declared champions.
Rules for classification: 1st stage classification; 2nd points; 3rd wins; 4th goal difference; 5th goals scored; 6th head-to-head results; 7th least red cards received; 8th least yellow cards received; 9th draw (C) = Champion; (R) = Relegated; (P) = Promoted; (E) = Eliminated; (O) = Play-off winner; (A) = Advances to a further round.
Only applicable when the season is not finished: (Q) = Qualified to the phase of tournament indicated; (TQ) = Qualified to tournament, but not yet to the particular phase indicated; (RQ) = Qualified to the relegation tournament indicated; (DQ) = Disqualified from tournament.