The graduation folder available from BOZ includes an organised list of all kinds of matters and regulations that apply to graduation. This memorandum, which describes the graduation procedure for the Water and Engineering Management department using a number of questions, is a supplement to the above. The idea is that you read through the BOZ folder and this memorandum before embarking on the graduating procedure.
WHEN DO YOU START PREPARING FOR GRADUATION?
You start graduation orientation around three or four months before completing all your courses. This prevents a gap between your final course and the graduation procedure. The preparation period could last longer especially if external companies need to be approached.
HOW DO YOU START PREPARING FOR GRADUATION?
In the Water and Engineering Management department an intake interview is held with all students that want to graduate in this department. The procedures that need to be followed are described online.
DO YOU HAVE TO PASS ALL COURSES BEFORE YOU CAN BEGIN THE GRADUATION PROCEDURE?
Graduation demands a lot of your time and exams invariably get in the way, so it's best to pass all your courses before starting the graduation procedure. During the intake interview you will be asked which courses you still have to complete. If, at the start of the graduation procedure, you still have three or more ongoing courses (four-year course) or more than 10 ECTS (five-year course), you need the academic study adviser's permission to start the graduation procedure. Permission will only be granted based on a realistic timetable. At the beginning of the graduation procedure BOZ checks whether this requirement has been satisfied.
WHAT ATTAINMENT TARGETS APPLY TO THE GRADUATION PROCEDURE?
During the graduation procedure you must demonstrate that you can independently solve a problem in a systematic (scientific) manner, from problem definition to written reporting, and indicate the key points in an oral presentation lasting approximately 30 minutes. Appendix I includes a number of criteria taken into account in evaluating the graduation procedure.
HOW DO YOU OBTAIN A TOPIC FOR YOUR FINAL PROJECT?
There are different ways of obtaining a topic for your final project:
- A choice of the vacant (internal or external) final projects on WEM's Internet pages;
- An internal research topic, established in consultation with a professor;
- An external research topic that relates to the department's internal research.
Topics for final projects must adequately relate to the department's ongoing research and education. This creates synergy in the research, allows high quality to be achieved and optimal support to be provided.
This is guaranteed for the vacant projects, and in principle the graduation supervisor and committee are established. In these cases the graduation coordinator manages the list of projects and provides a referral to the graduation supervisor.
The graduation coordinator first provides a referral to a suitable graduation supervisor even if you have a strong preference for your own initiative in seeking external projects. Direct contact with any external parties may only be made after consultation with the graduation supervisor.
In all cases the graduation supervisor decides whether you may begin work on a selected project, based on consultation and possibly the results obtained for relevant modules in the master's phase.
To maintain transparency with regard to selecting a final project, always report your developments to the graduation coordinator, until the project has been confirmed in association with the graduation supervisor.
IF YOU OPT FOR A CONNECTION TO ONGOING RESEARCH DOES IT MEAN THAT YOU DO NOT GRADUATE EXTERNALLY?
The department's ongoing research is usually based on external contacts and relates to specific problems. A connection to the department's ongoing research certainly doesn't mean that there aren't any external contacts involved. The projects that are put forward by the department could therefore be internal as well as (partly) external.
For internal projects a workplace is available in the department. This means that internal graduation is characterised by graduation from the WEM research group.
HOW DO YOU BEGIN THE GRADUATION PROCEDURE?
When you have a final project you make an appointment with your graduation supervisor. You make further agreements with him or her. The agreements made depend on whether you are graduating from the four or five-year course. The five-year course includes a programme of (usually) 10 ECTS that applies to graduation in preparation of the final project. You can compile this programme, which in any case includes writing a research proposal, in association with your graduation supervisor. A research proposal must also be written in order to graduate in the four-year course but in this case it is part of the final project itself and therefore could be less detailed. You learned how to write a research proposal in the 'Design Research' module, which is taught to prepare you for your internship or final Bachelor project. The proposal generally includes the following components:
- Problem definition;
- Research question and sub-questions;
- Research method;
- Division of chapters in your thesis;
WHAT DOES THE GRADUATION PREPARATION PROGRAMME INVOLVE?
In the five-year course the graduation procedure is preceded by a preparatory programme worth 10 ECTS. This programme is intended to thoroughly prepare you for graduation. The programme allows you to acquire specific knowledge or skills that could be useful for your final project as well as in compiling your research proposal. This usually takes place through a study of the literature about a topic related to the final project, but could also be completed by independently studying a book concluding in an exam (possibly oral) or an assignment. You must also write a research proposal as part of this programme. You receive a separate mark for the graduation programme. The content of the graduation programme is established in consultation with the graduation supervisor.
WHO SITS ON THE GRADUATION COMMITTEE?
The graduation supervisor compiles the graduation committee. Besides the graduation supervisor, it generally consists of another staff member from the department, course or UT and an external committee member if an external company or body is involved in the graduation procedure. One of the members of the graduation committee is appointed as the daily supervisor, who serves as your first point of contact if you have any questions. The role of the graduation committee in providing support is described in the BOZ graduation folder. As a rule the graduation supervisor is a lecturer or associate professor or, in some cases, an assistant professor. Appendix II includes a list of staff members and their role in the department.
HOW OFTEN DOES A GRADUATION COMMITTEE CONVENE?
In principle this depends on the agreements made and the graduation process. In general there are at least three occasions on which the full committee convenes. This is at the beginning of the graduation procedure when the research proposal is discussed, at some point halfway through to discuss progress, and at the end for a 'green light meeting' during which the draft of the graduation report is discussed. It is best to include a general indication of the meetings attended by the graduation committee in the timetable for the research proposal. In the meantime the student can always turn to the daily supervisor if he or she has any questions.
WHO ORGANISES THE GRADUATION COMMITTEE MEETINGS?
The student is responsible for organising the graduation committee meetings. The documents to prepare for the meetings must be presented to the committee members at least one week in advance. It is important that you take the graduation form along to each of the graduation committee meetings. It can be used to record any new agreements. It is also desirable for the student to take minutes during the meeting, including of the agreements made, and send them to the committee members shortly after the meeting.
HOW LONG DOES THE GRADUATION PROCEDURE LAST?
The study load of the graduation procedure is 840 hours (30 ECTS). The research proposal must include a timetable that indicates how these 840 hours will be spent and allocated, taking into account holidays, possibly working part-time on the research and any other study obligations. If necessary this timetable can be modified during the course of the project.
The department encourages a smooth process for completing the graduation phase within six months, even if during the study, the initially promising method appeared to be a dead end or if the research questions needed to be adapted along the way: conducting research leads to these types of risks and the evaluation also takes the process of the final project into account.
WHO COMPILES THE TIMETABLE AND MONITORS WHETHER IT IS RESPECTED?
The timetable is a component of the research proposal. Students have to learn to work according to a timetable and keep track of it themselves. In addition to the committee meetings it is wise to contact your daily supervisor at least once every two weeks, to inform him or her of your progress. This also provides an opportunity to discuss your timetable. Professors will then sound the alarm if someone has not been in touch for longer than was agreed.
WHEN DOES THE GRADUATION FORM HAVE TO BE COMPLETED?
The student must report to BOZ and receives graduation forms, which must be completed with the graduation supervisor, approximately three weeks before the start of the graduation procedure (prior to the start of the graduation programme for the five-year course). The graduating student must collect the graduation form from BOZ to take to each committee meeting so that any new agreements can be recorded on the form. The form must be returned to BOZ at the end of the meeting.
FINAL PROJECT SUMMARY (FORMAT ON THE WEBSITE)
The website provides a format for the final project summary. An initial version must be submitted to the graduation supervisor during the green light meeting. The graduation supervisor approves it or requests it be adapted.
At least one week before graduation:
one electronic version must be sent to the secretariat of the Water and Engineering Management department (by the student).
Below you will find a number of criteria that count towards the final project's evaluation. The list is probably incomplete and there may be overlaps between several criteria. Although it is not possible to objectively indicate how the following criteria will be weighted in the final evaluation, hopefully it provides some clarification of the criteria that play a role in the evaluation. The main criteria are: mastery of the coursework, independence, own contribution and reporting.
- Communication skills
- Student's attitude during intermediate consultation (active / passive)
- Ability to write a good research proposal in a limited amount of time (in the five-year course this is part of the graduation programme)
- Research progress (project management)
- Extent to which the research proposal was fulfilled and reasons for any deviations
- Mastery of the coursework
- Depth (detailed elaboration, use of literature)
- Understanding the relationship between the different research components- Substantiation / reasoning of conclusions
- Relationship between the results, conclusions and recommendations
- Creativity / inventiveness: extent to which the student independently integrates new elements
- Transparency / precision of the formulations
- Structure and cohesion
- Figures and tables
- Literature references
If the study devotes equal attention to engineering and management this will be positively weighted; if this is not the case, or is to a lesser degree, it does not necessarily have a direct negative impact on the evaluation.