Thesis Projects

Guidelines for the thesis project

The master thesis project is carried out mainly during the last two trimestres of the academic year and evaluated by a committee integrated by three members: the SMC master coordinator, the thesis supervisor and another faculty member of the master. This evaluation of the thesis project takes into account the tutoring sessions, the oral presentation and the written report. The form used for the evaluation, which includes some guidelines on how to arrive at the final numerical grade, can be found here.

Oral presentation:
Students present the status of their master project work in front of the evaluation committee at the end of the academic year in a public presentation. This presentation does not require to have finished the actual thesis report. Prior to the oral presentation, the student has to submit a draft of the thesis as a PDF file to the supervisor and to the evaluation committee. Oral presentations take 20 minutes plus 10 minutes of questions from the evaluation committee. Oral presentations are scheduled during the last week of June.

Thesis report:
There is one single deadline for the submission of the thesis report (usually at the end of August).
Prior to this deadline, the student has to submit the final version of the thesis as a PDF files to the supervisor and to the rest of the evaluation committee via email. Accordingly, the student and supervisor have to arrange that the supervisor has enough time to read and assess the final thesis text before the deadline. After the submission, the evaluation committe fills up the evaluation form and determines the final grade of the thesis project. To facilitate the work of all parties involved we encourage that reports finished before the deadline are sent to the evaluation committee as soon as possible.

Formatting of the report:
As for the format of the written thesis (Font size, line spacing, margins, Section numbering, etc) we propose that the students follow the A4 templates proposed by the Department
and provided here.

Length and structure of the report:
The thesis report can be structured according to Introduction, Methods, Results, Discussion. However, this is not mandatory. Different overall organizations of the report can be used, if necessary. As a general guideline we would like to indicate that a Master report is not supposed to reach the comprehensiveness of a PhD thesis. An adequate length of the thesis is between 20-40 pages (This page count assumes the format referred to above. This count includes the text, figures, figure captions, tables but excludes cover pages, abstract, acknowledgements, table of contents, references and also excludes technical appendices, such as for example programming source codes). The number of 20-40 pages is regarded as a guideline. If a student wants to write 50 pages instead, that is discouraged but perfectly tolerated. A longer report will not result in a lower grade.
However, a report should have neither 5 nor 150 pages.

Examples of thesis reports:
You can find here the thesis reports from previous years.