The effective excitation of atomic states is a key ingredient in quantum-dynamics experiments using ultracold gases. The excitation of Rydberg-P-states using a three-photon scheme allows for implementing an experimental excitation set-up capable of addressing both S- and P-states. The theoretical description of such an excitation process involves many independent parameters, making it difficult to choose them such that the population transfer into the desired state is optimised. In this thesis the three- photon excitation is investigated theoretically by means of analytical descriptions and numerical simulations. An effective analytical description is presented for the case of three-photon resonance and large detunings on the intermediate states. It is shown that, to a good approximation, the excitation can be described using only two effective parameters, allowing for an intuitive understanding and a simplified experimental optimisation. The numerical simulations of the full system are compared to the analytical models and show good agreement in the parameter regime relevant to the experiment.