- About the GPGS
- Global Studies MA
- International Business & Development Studies MA
- Japanese Studies MA
- Global Studies PhD
- For Current M.A. Students
- For Current Ph.D. Students
- For Applicants
Students wishing to pursue independent research can apply for the thesis track after matriculation in the GPGS. Application is typically at the end of the first semester. Acceptance into this track is a two-step process consisting, first, of the evaluation of a student's potential for writing a thesis and, second, evaluation of a student's thesis proposal. Satisfying the graduation requirements this track typically requires four semesters. While entry into the thesis track can be initiated after the first semester, this might prolong a student's time in the GPGS. Thesis-track graduation requirements are the accumulation of 30 course credits and submission of a thesis. In the semester of intended graduation, a student registers for "Thesis Seminar" (4 credits) and "Master's Thesis" (0 credits).
The Thesis The thesis is an argument supported by primary data, and/or secondary data to which a novel interpretation/methodology is applied that make an original contribution to knowledge in a scholarly discipline. A typical thesis paper is 40–60 pages in length.
Seeking an Advisor In the semester of intended application to the thesis track, students obtain the signature of a faculty member in their master's degree area on the "Thesis Track Intention Form". This faculty member will then serve as the advisor of the thesis. The advisor can be someone other than the advisor assigned to students in their first semester. It is the student's responsibility to find an advisor among the faculty members.
Developing a Thesis Proposal Student work with their advisors to develop a thesis proposal. Students should consult their advisors early in the semester in which they intend to defend the thesis proposal.
Defending the Thesis Proposal The thesis proposal is defended orally in front of the student's degree area faculty. A student who successfully defends the proposal is then officially on the thesis track. A student whose proposal is rejected stays on the credit track until graduation. As there is no option for resubmission of a rejected proposal, the faculty does not provide detailed comments on failed proposals.
Forming a Thesis Committee Once students have successfully defended the thesis proposal, a committee consisting of the advisor and two readers will be formed. The designation of the two readers is at the discretion of each advisor, in consultation with the students.
Typical Thesis Track Schedule
|Semester 3||begin research and writing of thesis|
For the dates of c, d, e and f above, please see the Academic Calendar.
Students may apply to enter the thesis track regardless of whether they ticked "credit track" or "thesis track" on their GPGS application form.
Application Procedure The Thesis Track Intention Form can be obtained from the GPGS office. It requires the student to write a short description of the intended thesis topic and question and obtain the signature of the faculty member whom the student wishes to be the thesis advisor. The application form (hard copy) must be submitted to the GPGS office by 5:00 p.m. on the last day of classes in the semester (i.e. the last day of classes before final exams begin). Students will be notified of the evaluation results before the subsequent semester starts.
Evaluation Criteria Evaluation to enter the thesis track is based on three criteria:
1. GPA A minimum 3.5 GPA based on at least 8 credits of coursework.
2. Quality of proposal The possibility for the topic to be developed into a thesis, and the student's capacity for doing so.
3. Availability of mentor The presence of a faculty member willing to supervise the topic. In selecting a topic, students should consider the specializations of faculty members. (Students should also consult with a potential mentor about their schedule of sabbatical or leave of absence and must ensure that s/he is available for both your proposal and thesis defenses.)