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Thesis Research Master African Studies


Admission requirements

Compulsory for second year students of the ResMA AS program.


In this period students write their individual Research Masters Thesis. They are guided and supervised by two specialists in the field. Specific attention will be given to the structuring of arguments and the development of research questions on the basis of debates on the current state of research.

The thesis for the ResMA is 25 ec, and as a rule will not exceed a maximum of 30,000 words including notes, bibliography and appendices. The thesis is supervised by a lecturer of MA programme of African Studies. The thesis is judged by two lecturers involved in the programme.

Course objectives

  • Writing an academic text based on empirical (fieldwork) data;

  • Applying theoretical perspectives to empirical findings;

  • Integrating methodological approaches in research and theoretical interpretation of empirical data.


The whole of the second semester of the second year


The thesis has to be written in English.

Mode of instruction

Writing a ResMA thesis under supervision of two supervisors

Assessment method

A completed ResMA thesis.

In assessing the quality of the thesis, the following aspects play an important role:

  • Formulating and analysing the research question;

  • Structure of the thesis;

  • Integration of secondary literature into the argument;

  • Good argumentation of student’s own arguments;

  • Style, use of language and lay-out;

  • The student’s independency

The supervisor and second reader will use an assessment form to grade the thesis.

During the academic year, the thesis will be graded within four weeks. Between 1 June and 31 August it may take six weeks at the most. The first reader/supervisor communicates the result and the grading form to the secretariat and to the student.


Students do not need to register for their thesis. They are required to contact a potential supervisor by themselves.


Dr. K. Nijenhuis