Master’s Thesis

Goals of the Master’s Thesis

The master’s thesis is a piece of applied research. The key goal of the master’s thesis is solving a problem relevant to the field of study based on existing scientific knowledge in compliance with the principles of responsible conduct of research. The goal is to produce a scientific thesis. The scientific nature of the master’s thesis should not, however, be underlined too much, since producing new scientific knowledge is not expected of a master’s thesis, but only of a doctoral dissertation. The solutions developed in the master’s thesis must be useful to the practice of the field.

The master's thesis shall be written on a topic related to the advanced studies of the degree programme, agreed upon between the student and a professor who is either in charge of the research field linked with the topic or sufficiently specialised in the topic of the thesis.

The goals of the master’s thesis are to:

  • provide the skills needed to acquire scientific knowledge independently and to identify, distinguish and solve scientific and professional problems also under new circumstances and to apply scientific knowledge also otherwise
  • provide in-depth knowledge of the theories and research methods, problem-solving and design methods essential to the studies
  • provide in-depth knowledge of the issues studied

Students may apply for a topic for their master’s thesis when the bachelor’s degree and a minimum of 45 credits counted towards the master’s degree have been completed. The degree programme committee of the school approves the topic and the language of the master’s thesis, and appoints a thesis supervisor and one or two thesis advisors for it.

The master’s thesis must be completed in one year. Students who fail to submit the master’s thesis for examination by the deadline shall submit a new thesis topic application to the school.

The master’s thesis is a public document. It cannot be concealed.

General Instructions on Writing the Thesis

The Master’s Thesis is worth of 30 credits. The thesis is written in Finnish, Swedish or in other language approved by the Degree Programme Committee (English is automatically approved). The actual guidelines for formatting the master’s thesis, including tips on the presentation style (font, line spacing, margins, referencing) are available on Into.

The master’s thesis is to be a concise, clearly written and finalised written presentation of a topic, with the maximum length of 70-80 pages with appendices. The appearance of the thesis must be neat, organised and elegant. Right alignment and use of headers and footers are optional, and the page number format may be chosen by the student. The left margin must be sufficiently wide to allow binding.

Students are recommended to illustrate the thesis with appropriate figures and tables. Tables are good for presenting exact values. Instructions on using figures and tables are given in various writing manuals.

Electronic originality check

University has a university-level electronic system which recognises similarities between written texts and thus helps in the detection of plagiarism.

Presenting the Master’s Thesis

The master’s thesis process also includes presentation of the finished thesis at a time agreed upon with the thesis supervisor. The presentation or similar event to showcase the thesis has to be held before the master’s thesis is approved and evaluated.

Maturity Essay

The master’s thesis author must write a maturity essay to demonstrate conversance with the field of the thesis and proficiency in the language s/he has been educated in. The maturity essay may be an essay written on a topic given by the thesis supervisor and written under supervision. Alternatively, the maturity essay may be part of the master’s thesis, in which case the method of completion is agreed upon with the supervising professor. The maturity essay must be written before the approval of the master’s thesis.

Finnish students write the maturity essay in the language they have been educated at primary and secondary levels (Finnish or Swedish). The requirement of a maturity essay also applies to international students, who usually write their maturity essays in English. Maturity essays written in other languages than Finnish or Swedish are only subjected to a review of the contents, not of the language.

Evaluation of the master’s thesis

The master’s thesis is graded on the same scale as the other study attainments. The thesis is graded by the supervising professor. The degree programme committee shall decide the final approval and grading of the thesis after examining the written statement by the thesis supervisor. You can check evaluation criteria from Evaluation form for the master's thesis.

Graduation

Students can apply for the master's degree, when all courses required for the master's degree have been completed and the master's thesis is done. Students can apply for the approval and evaluation of the master's thesis and for the master's degree graduation at the same time. Thesis will be approved by the degree programme committee and the graduation by the dean.

In the School of Chemical Engineering, the graduation ceremony is held four times a year; two ceremonies in the autumn term and two ceremonies in the spring term. The graduation dates as well as the graduation ceremony dates are available in the study administration schedule.

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