M.A. International Relations Online students are busy with their master theses.
News from Mar 30, 2015
Our eighth run students are working on the last part of the International Relations Online (IRO) program, namely the writing of the master thesis. This is the last step towards earning the master degree.
Work on the master thesis begins after all twelve modules have been passed successfully. In this final task students show what they have learned during their studies. They are now able to pursue and conclude a research project on their own.
Students select any International Relations Online instructor they would like to be their supervisor and then discuss and settle the topic with her/him. The topic should be concise and specify a problem that can be treated within the limits of such a study (three months writing time for full-time students). This is already an essential preparation. Most students tend to start with a rather big question that they then need to limit. The master thesis is not supposed to close a research gap. It is much preferable to concentrate on some small issue and treat it completely.
The first step is the research proposal of not more than 500 words. The research proposal needs to cover the following points: background and relevance of the puzzle that is to be dealt with, the research question to be answered, the theoretical approach taken, the research design (stating the independent and dependent variables, and clearly demarcating their operationalization and the hypotheses the research is based on), the methodological approach and some literature that will be used.
The examination board looks at all research proposals and decides on their feasibility. In many cases recommendations for improvement are issued. Once the examination board’s approval is given, the student can start elaborating the master thesis.
Soon our eighth run students will submit their theses. Graduation will be celebrated on October 2, 2015.