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Thesis Seminar and Colloquium


Admission requirements

Students need to have fulfilled all requirements for year one of the ResMa Arts and Culture/Literary Studies.


This seminar will train students in writing a research proposal and presenting a paper.
The first part serves as a preparation for their final thesis, but also for submitting a PhD proposal to a funding body such as the Dutch Foundation for Scientific Research. During this part we will work through various formats of research proposals, varying from short abstracts for a paper at a conference to a full-blown phd proposal.

In the second part we will mimic a scientific conference. Students will organize sessions in which they present a paper based on their thesis research, prepare an abstract, and practice presenting the paper, moderating a session etc.To get the most out of this seminar it is very helpful if students already have an idea of the subject(s) they want to work on. This can be their thesis subject, but they can also choose another topic they want to pursue after graduating the ResMa.

Course objectives

Knowledge: by the end of the seminar students will have obtained a thorough knowledge of the major ways of writing a research proposal and presenting it; and a good grounding in how to submit an abstract and present a paper at a major conference.

Skills: students will be able to:

  • Analyse their research interests;

  • Formulate a research question;

  • The methods to investigate it;

  • A hypothesis to answer these questions;

  • To find the relevant bibliography in a short time;

  • To write the proposal in clear English;

  • How to write an abstract for a major conference in their field;

  • Prepare the paper to be presented at the conference;

  • Present the paper;

  • Organize a session, act as chair or respondent.


The timetable is available on the Arts and Culture website.

Mode of instruction

  • Seminar

Course Load

Total course load 10 EC x 28 hours= 280 hours

  • 12 × 2 uur class: 24 hours

  • Two days colloquium:16 hours

  • Assignments: 70 hours

  • Reading literature: 60 hours

  • Preparation abstract: 28 hours

  • Preparation colloquium: 14 hours

  • Preparation paper colloquium: 60 hours

  • Organising colloquium: 8 hours

Assessment method

  • Written assignments: 25%

  • Abstract colloquium: 5%

  • Paper during the colloquium: 25%

  • Research proposal: 25%

  • Participation seminar: 20 %


The final grade for the course is established by determining the weighted average


Should the overall mark be unsatisfactory, Re-examination is possible via a rewritten version of the paper and/or the research proposal


Blackboard will be used for:

  • Announcement of the reading list

Reading list

To be announced.


Enrolment through uSis is mandatory.
General information about uSis is available in English and Dutch.

Registration Studeren à la carte and Contractonderwijs

Not applicable.


Rob Zwijnenberg
Erik Kwakkel

For practical questions and information please contact the secretarial office;
ResMA Arts and Culture & Literary Studies