Once being allocated to a supervisor you need to make clear arrangements with him/her about what you may expect from each other, and which tasks and responsibilities both you and your supervisor have. The following (partly already set) arrangements should at least be discussed.
- The supervisor explains the learning goals and assessment to the student.
- Expectations (of both student and supervisor) are being discussed regarding:
- Product: intermediate documents and final thesis. The documents to be discussed are to have been submitted no later than three working days prior to the meeting (unless otherwise agreed upon with the supervisor(s)). The documents to be discussed are to be paginated and include the name, date and list of literature (if applicable).
- Process: the student and his/her supervisor should be specific about how and when both parties will keep in touch. The student holds first responsibility of staying in contact with the supervisor.
- Communication: the student is advised to note down decisions and actions to be taken (no more than 1 A4 page), and to submit them to the 1st supervisor within one week.
- The student informs the external coach/supervisor (if applicable) precisely and timely on their role (advisor) in their graduation project and sends him/her a copy of this graduation guide.
- The UT supervisor holds responsibility of the assessment and grading.
- In case the University of Twente supervisor and the external supervisor do not know each other the student is advised to check with his/her supervisors whether it is desired that they meet at the beginning of the project. This will allow them (next to become acquainted) to discuss roles and responsibilities.
- Other specific circumstances that student or supervisor think are relevant for the professional relationship.
Besides this it is our experience that it is really important and helpful to discuss your research question thoroughly in the first few meetings and to agree on and write it down carefully as soon as possible.
The following points of interest are relevant for the thesis planning and thesis process:
- A guideline has been developed for the number of meetings, the contents of those meetings, the times the second supervisor is to be present and the overall schedule. Depending on the type of project and the process, this guideline may be (somewhat) derogated from in mutual consultation: guideline schedule 10 EC thesis (in dutch) & guideline schedule 25-35 EC thesis
- Start the thesis-writing-process as soon as possible after commencing the project.
- While planning the master thesis process, ask your supervisor when he/she will be absent (e.g. conference, vacation), and make sure to consider this in your time-line.
- Make sure that you have plenty of time available to work on their master's thesis. For a master's thesis of 30 EC, the graduation process takes on average 840 hours. Spread equally over 3 periods, this averages to 28 hours per week! The time required to complete the master's thesis varies, and depends on the difficulty level of the project, the set-up of the research, the engagement of any external parties, and the skills, capabilities and diligence of the student.
- Your conduct and actions and the course of the process (incl. completion within the scheduled time) are all taken into account in the assessment of the master's thesis.
- Should progress not accord to plan, it is imperative that you and/or your supervisor contact the study adviser (for additional support, adjustment of the planning, etc.).
Once you have started your thesis there are several relevant formal arrangements to take care of as described below.
Register your thesis in Mobility Online
Mobility online is the UT system that is used to register thesis projects. As soon as you know what Master thesis project you are about to start, you are required to register your thesis project in Mobility Online. The registration process in Mobility Online consists of several steps which you all have to complete before you can actually graduate.
In the Mobility Online system there are different ‘pipelines’ for internal and external thesis projects. Therefore, you first have to choose between option A or B as described below. When you’re not sure which option you should choose please contact the Educational Affairs Office.
Option A: When you do your Master thesis project in a UT (internal) topic you need to register in the so-called “Graduation – standard pipeline”
Option B: When you do your Master thesis project externally in an organisation/company (with a third supervisor from this organization/company) or when you do your Master thesis project abroad (outside the Netherlands) you need to register in the extended so-called “Graduation pipeline”
After you’ve chosen option A or B please register your thesis in Mobility Online by following the corresponding procedure/instructions as described below:
Submit the thesis application form
One of the first steps in Mobility Online is to fill out the thesis application form (in other words graduation contract). You need to discuss the proposal form and the corresponding appendix with your supervisor(s). Once you have completed the proposal form and the appendix, submit the signed proposal form together with the (signed) appendix to the Educational Affairs Office (Citadel Building room H436: printed and signed).
Approval of the ethics committee
When your project and supervisor have been determined and you do research with human subjects, you need to submit your research project for ethical review to the Ethics Committee. This is in principle for all intended research within the faculty of Behavioral Science involving humans in an indirect (i.e. file or social media research) or direct manner (i.e. experiments, surveys, interviews). Submit the ethical approval form always in accordance with your supervisor. You can only start the research data collection after you gained ethical approval.