Course Description and Requirements
The master’s thesis must be completed within two years of the completion of the fieldwork. After two years, fieldwork data loses validity and the thesis can no longer be accepted.
Master Thesis Global Ethnography and Policy in Practice (15 EC): minimum of 22,500 words, maximum 30,000 words (excl. list of references, excl. texts copied from earlier assessed assignments – calculation via Turnitin) based on fieldwork or internship data and literature study. Exceeding the maximum word count can in exceptional instances be allowed, but only with the approval of the individual supervisor.
Master’s thesis (15 ECTS): For students taking the Visual Ethnography Specialisation, the master’s thesis encompasses both an audiovisual and a textual component. The text should be a minimum of 8,000 words, maximum 12,000 words (excl. list of references, excl. texts copied from earlier assessed assignments – calculation via Turnitin) based on fieldwork or internship data and literature study. Exceeding the maximum word count can be allowed in exceptional instances, but only with the approval of the individual supervisor. With the approval of the supervisor the audiovisual part may consist of a film with a length of 25-30 minutes or an equivalent effort in an alternative audiovisual format.
N.B.: Please note that sections of text that have been included in the Research Proposal can be copied or re-edited, but will not count towards the minimum number of words required to fulfil the requirements of the master’s thesis.
In the master’s thesis special attention should be paid to the following:
The theoretical presuppositions and their relationship with the research findings as worked out in the thesis.
Clarity of definition of the research question: dedication, accuracy and precision of data analysis and reliability of the data.
The extent to which the author conveys the general social scientific relevance of the selected topic.
Scientific curiosity and critical reflection on the student’s own contribution.
Conciseness of the research report.
Clarity of presentation and writing style.
Accuracy of references and quotation.
The thesis should be written in English or, if approved by the Examination Board, in Dutch.
Mode of instruction
Students can also make use of the Master Thesis Lab.
Dependent on research topic and area.
The master’s thesis is assessed by the supervisor and a second reviewer. The audiovisual and textual components of the thesis are graded at a ratio of 60%/40%, but both must be sufficient for the thesis as a whole to be considered sufficient. Assessment is based on a standardized grading rubric and developed along procedures set up for all programmes at Leiden University’s Faculty of Social Sciences.
Each year the Institute for Cultural Anthropology and Development Sociology recognizes the best field research and master’s thesis with an award called the Speckmann Award. The Award encompasses an official certificate and a financial reward. The award is intended to encourage students to conduct excellent research and rewards the one who produces the year’s best master’s thesis. Evaluation of theses submitted for the prize is carried out by a departmental prize-committee.
Only the faculty may bring to the attention of the committee those theses they consider eligible for the Speckmann Award.
The thesis is written in the three months after finishing fieldwork research. The individuals’ writing and editing process is supported by the course Thesis Seminar. The deadline and procedure for submission of the thesis are published on the Brightspace pages of the course Thesis Seminar.
N.B.: Please note that the research obligations of the teaching staff mean that there can be no supervision in July and August.
Master's programme coördinator: Dr. Erik de Maaker