This information applies to:
- POL616 Dissertation for MA in Global Politics and Law
- POL6012 Dissertation for MA in Globalisation and Development
- POL6660 Dissertation for MA in Politics
- POL6670 Dissertation for MA in International Political Economy
- POL6690 Dissertation for MA in International Relations
- POL6701 Dissertation for MA in European Governance and Politics
- POL6705 Dissertation for MA in European Law, Governance and Politics
- POL6709 Dissertation for MA in Global Security
- POL6720 Dissertation for MA in Public Policy
- POL6731 Dissertation for MA in Global Justice
- POL6990 Dissertation for MA in Politics with Research Methods
The dissertation tests students’ ability to develop an independent idea or hypothesis, and to see it through to completion. Writing a successful dissertation entails sustained periods of research and deep thinking. The completed piece of writing must be 12,000 words in length. Ideally the dissertation should be related directly to the programme the student is enrolled on.
Dissertations are worked on over the summer period, from mid-May to mid-September. Students will have at least three formal meetings with their supervisor during this period, and will also receive ongoing support with their research and writing, should they so wish.
All dissertations are informed by theory or have a theoretical basis. However, they need not focus on a purely theoretical issue, and may have a strong empirical component. Indeed, they might be heavily focused on empirical detail, but they should always speak to a theoretical issue and be informed by theoretical concerns.
Students on any Masters programme may undertake a Work Based Learning Dissertation rather than the dissertation option linked directly to their programme. This is a piece of independent research produced in collaboration with an external organisation.
Research Methods dissertations should contain a discussion of research methods. Note that 35% of the final mark will be accorded to this (though this does not require the student to accord 35% of the total word length to considering research methods).