24.04.2018

Masters Thesis in the De­part­ment of Bio­lo­gical and En­vi­ron­men­tal Science

Master's thesis is the required for the completion of the degree. It is worth of 30 ECTS. The aim of the thesis work it to deeply understand a certain research topic within your major and practice the scientific process under close supervision. This is why it is very important to use good scientific practices in the study design, data collection and reporting . Like all scientific work, the thesis will be evaluated by external experts.

For those students who are in the programme for biology teachers the Master's thesis is 20 ECTS and its topic can also be linked to didactics.

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When to start the thesis work and how long does it take?

  • 30 ECTS is equal to five months of full time work. In practice it is good to reserve full year for the process, starting from the selection of the topic and ending to grading of final work. This is because in addition to full time work during the data collection and analysis, you can do other studies during planning.
  • The best time to start thinking about possible master's thesis work topics is the third Spring of the Bachelor's studies or the first Autumn of Master's studies
  • During the first Autumn of Master's studies the course called "Master's seminar 1 and project management" is aimed to help you in the selection of study topic and how to write the research plan.
  • The research plan is presented in the bi-annual Departmental master's seminar either in November-December or April-May.
  • The student should read background information about the thesis topic before the actual work and demonstrate learning either in a written exam or learning report (course: BENS5036 Exam related to the master's thesis).
  • If the study requires field work, this is unusually done during the summer after the first year of master's studies.
  • Experimental laboratory work related to the master's thesis is recommended between the Spring of first year  and Autumn of the second year.
  • The experimental results are presented in the public seminar during the second year of the master's studies either November-December or April-May

When the student and supervisor agree on starting the master's thesis project planning, they fill and sign the form.

Here will be a link to the technical writing instructions of the thesis

Here will be a link to the evaluation criteria used for Master's thesis

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Summary of the steps in the Master's thesis project:

  • Selection of the topic (the student will contact potential supervisors, help in seminar 1 and from the teachers responsible for the master's programme)
  • Formulation of the research hypothesis (supervisors will help, this will be filled in the Master's thesis starting form and in the research plan required in seminar 1)
  • Detailed planning of experiments, schedule, statistical hypotheses and data analysis (supervisors will help, included in the research plan)
  • Presentation of the research plan and feedback from peer (seminar 1, student opponent will be selected, supervisor will help)
  • Experimental work, sample collection, measurements (supervisors and collaborators will help)
  • Analysis of the data (should be done parallely with the experimental part, supervisors and collaborators will help)
  • Reporting of the results (writing the thesis, Scientific Writing course, possible other courses organized by the language center, several rounds of feedback with the supervisor)
  • Public presentation (seminar 2)
  • Evaluation (can also be done before seminar 2, Department will decide the reviewers, written feedback and a numerical grade)
  • Publication (the student will submit the electronic version to the library)