How to draw up a research paper: Information for students UNIVERSITÄT HOHENHEIM

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UNIVERSITÄT HOHENHEIM
Department of
Rural Communication and Extension
How to draw up a research paper:
Information for students
January 2005
Foreword
The master thesis shall show that the student is able to work independently on a problem
in the field of the respective course within a predetermined timeframe applying scientific
methods. The thesis consists of a written part (paper) and an oral part (justification / defence) (see also § 16 of the examination regulations of the Tropenmaster and ENVIROFOOD). This research work is the final part of the study and forms an important
part of the overall result.
The period reserved for this work is six months (4th semester). This relatively restricted
period requires thorough reflection and strict planning, for which this brochure is meant to
be helpful. The booklet addresses master students at our department “Agricultural Extension and Communication” and others who are interested. The objective is to provide the
necessary information and guidelines in order to be able to write a thesis responding to
our criteria.
If you are interested in doing your thesis at our department, you are advised to go first
through this booklet before having a meeting with Prof. Hoffmann or another department
staff member.
How to draw up a research paper: information for students
Version E-1, January 2005
Institute of Social Sciences in Agriculture
University of Hohenheim (430A)
70593 Stuttgart
Telephone:
Fax:
Email:
0711/459-2646
0711/459-2652
[email protected]
Compiled and prepared by:
Volker Hoffmann, Maria Gerster-Bentaya, Rein van der Hoek
Cover picture: RENÉ MARGRITTE – The human condition, 1935.
Back picture: RENÉ MARGRITTE – The key to the fields, 1934.
The newest version of this text can be downloaded from:
http:/www.uni-hohenheim.de/~i430a/lehre/master-en.htlm
II
Table of contents
Foreword ..............................................................................................................................II
1
How to start ........................................................................................................ 1
1.1
Looking for a topic.................................................................................................. 1
1.2
Following the examination regulations................................................................... 1
1.3
Supervision.............................................................................................................. 2
1.4
Funding ................................................................................................................... 2
2
Some hints for the conception and assessment of empirical
research ............................................................................................................... 4
2.1
Most difficult task: definition of the topic .............................................................. 4
2.2
Content of the different chapters............................................................................. 4
2.2.1
Problem statement................................................................................................... 5
2.2.2
Objective of the research......................................................................................... 5
2.2.3
Research methodology............................................................................................ 6
2.2.4
Theory ..................................................................................................................... 6
2.2.5
Results ..................................................................................................................... 7
2.2.6
Conclusions............................................................................................................. 7
2.2.7
Summary ................................................................................................................. 7
2.3.
Evaluation criteria ................................................................................................... 7
2.3.1
Problem statement and objectives........................................................................... 8
2.3.2
Methodology ........................................................................................................... 8
2.3.3
Quality assessment.................................................................................................. 8
2.3.4
Format ................................................................................................................... 10
2.3.5
Extraordinary achievements.................................................................................. 10
2.4.
Concluding remarks .............................................................................................. 10
3
Recommendations for literature on empirical social
research ............................................................................................................. 11
III
4
Guidelines on lay-out and design of documents ..............................12
4.1
Introductory remarks..............................................................................................12
4.2
Recommendations for the lay-out..........................................................................12
4.2.1
Some basic remarks on word processing with computers.....................................12
4.2.2
Page setup ..............................................................................................................14
4.2.3
Line format, paragraphs and page breaks ..............................................................14
4.2.4
Formatting of text ..................................................................................................15
4.3
Language and style ................................................................................................22
4.4
Checking the text ...................................................................................................23
4.5
Design of the title page ..........................................................................................24
4.6
Declaration.............................................................................................................25
4.7
Handing in the document.......................................................................................25
5
Evaluation and marking ...............................................................................25
6
Publishing of articles ....................................................................................27
IV
1 How to start
For students of the master courses, the 4th semester is scheduled to elaborate the master
thesis. Yet we advise to start as early as possible as you might need some time to decide
upon a topic and eventually seek for financial support, which depends on a sound elaborated proposal.
1.1 Looking for a topic
If you have an idea, a possible topic or an interesting issue please approach a staff member of our department. We will help you to find out whether and how a research theme
can be formulated from this.
If you don’t have an idea yet about a suitable research theme, we are also happy to be of
assistance in choosing a possible topic. Topics of interest provided by external organisations – if available – can be found on the wooden notice board in the corridor. It can also
be helpful to go through completed theses, of which a list and a file with summaries is
available in room 122 (Ms Binder). Full copies, which can also be borrowed, can be
found in the department library.
Three aspects are of importance in choosing a research theme:
• Referring to a problem: the research process should contribute to clarification and
possibly solutions of concrete issues. In our philosophy this is part and parcel of applied research, with a focus on theory-based empirical studies.
• Own interest: the more people are interested or experienced in a certain area, the easier the research work is going to be. Own experience and involvement in combination
with personal preferences will contribute to selecting and clearly defining a suitable
research theme in agreement with the supervisor.
• Department’s capacity of assisting and supervising: supervision is likely to be most
effective if the research theme forms a part of existing fields of interest of the department
or if the supervisor is interested for other reasons.
1.2 Following the examination regulations
A master thesis shall show that the student is able to work independently on a problem in
the field of his/her course using scientific methods and within a fixed period of time. The
thesis consists of a written part (paper) and an oral part (justification/defence) (§ 18,1
PO1). The head of the department decides whether a topic is accepted for a master thesis.
After approval the head of the department or another staff member will ensure the supervision until the thesis is delivered. (See also next chapter “Supervision”).
The thesis has to be registered within the timeframe as mentioned in the examination
regulations. The form is to be completed jointly by the student (personal data) and the
1
PO = examination regulations
1
head of the department (research theme, starting date, name of the second examiner).
(Picture 1). The thesis has to be completed within 6 months after registration.
A master thesis can also be carried out together with fellow-students. This is even recommendable in the case of a relatively extensive topic, which can then be divided among
the different participants. To enable individual marking, the division of tasks has to be defined clearly and mentioned in the foreword.
From time to time organisations approach us with communication and extension issues
they would like to have elaborated in the framework of a thesis. Sometimes financial support is offered. Such proposals are announced at the black notice board opposite the secretary’s office or can be found in the file with topic proposals in room 122.
1.3 Supervision
Each student working on an assignment has a supervisor. In choosing the supervisor both
student’s preferences and staff members’ workload and specialization are taken into account. Generally supervision tasks are divided at the periodical staff meetings. Change of
supervisor can only take place in exceptional cases (on valid grounds). The supervision is
especially aimed at helping exactly delineating the theme, providing information on relevant literature, assisting in selecting the research methodology with regard to the objectives and giving advice on data processing.
1.4 Funding
Funding is generally not available. For research in developing countries students can apply for a research grant to the Eiselen Foundation (more information available at the
“Tropenzentrum”). From time to time organisations address the department requesting an
issue to be investigated and offering to take over the costs. In this case financial matters
are arranged among the partners. Contributions are generally in the range between 1000
and 2500 Euro. The department has no funds available.
2
Picture 1: Application Form for the Master Thesis
3
2 Some hints for the conception and assessment of
empirical research
Perhaps you have already undergone some training in empirical research before. In that
case you might already be aware of some of the aspects mentioned in this chapter. If not,
the following hints will be even more useful.
2.1 Most difficult task: definition of the topic
If you have only little experience with research methodologies and the theme you want to
work on, you might have quite some difficulty at the beginning of your work to define
and delimit the topic. Empirical research is like an expedition into the unknown. You
have to go step by step and continuous reorientation is needed. Therefore, at the beginning you should not determine the whole methodology up to the smallest detail. Planning
is done in phases and the intermediate results are used for the planning of the next steps.
Nevertheless you should always keep in mind the total available time for your work.
Empirical research can be compared with a small path in the mountains, which runs like a
spiral up to the peak. Only when you arrive on the top of the mountain and look downwards you will see whether the chosen path was right or not: the objective can only be described definitely when it is achieved. In the final report you should describe how you finally arrived at the topic, the problem statement, the objectives, the results, the conclusions and the recommendations. Only this transparency makes it possible for others to
evaluate the process and the results and to use them appropriately.
A fruitful progress of this kind of research – especially at the beginning – depends very
much on which of the upcoming uncertainties are wishes (what we would like to achieve)
and which are really feasible (what we can achieve). Therefore it has been proved useful
to formulate clearly at a very early stage the topic, the problem statement, the objective(s)
and the planned methodology of the research. This helps a great deal in asking other persons for advice and it is a precondition to make necessary corrections while getting more
and more insight into the matter.
2.2 Content of the different chapters
A consistent and logic research report consists of a clear problem description, from which
the objectives are derived. These objectives have to be targeted using a well-defined
methodology, guided by theory and leading to the intended results. These results must allow logical conclusions that contribute to the general problem context and provide new
elements for solutions.
The following overview gives a graphical description of the above-mentioned process.
The outer circle describes the structure, the inner one the elements of the content. The
process starts with a description of the “general context” and leads to a concept of which
the consistency is checked. After this check (leading to adaptations to the concept, if necessary) the different chapters of the thesis are written. At the end of the writing process,
the consistency is checked again (for instance at a predetermined date) and modifications
4
are made if necessary. The following parts explain more in detail what the various parts of
the research work should include.
Overview 1: The emerging and structure of an empirical research work
Objectives of
the thesis
Prelim.
topic
1
Problem
statement
topic
2
Theory
Hypothesis
Model
Relevance
3
Methodology
4
Delimitation
Specification
General
context
Consistency
Check
Steps to and
ways to
achieve the
objectives
Presentation
of results and
interpretation
Results related
to the
objectives
Derivations,
outlook
Chapter 1-5
very brief
(1-3 p.)
6
5
Summary
Conclusions
2.2.1 Problem statement
The problem statement describes the general context of the topic, historical trends and the
various elements to be considered. It explains how and why the topic was chosen, the
stakeholders and its importance for the society. The theoretical and practical challenges
should be pointed out, i.e. the contribution to research on the one hand (theory, model,
methods, facts), and the practical implications on the other (insight into problems, recommendations).
2.2.2 Objective of the research
All aspects described in the problem statement cannot be tackled in one single research.
Therefore, specific research objectives are formulated as clearly as possible and described
separately. They are a compromise between the research interest and feasibility considerations. Objectives can be made more specific by selecting a key problem, using only a limited number of cases, or limiting oneself to a certain region or period.
The objective should describe in a short and a clear way what the research aims for, to
what end the results will be used and which kind of conclusions are expected.
5
2.2.3 Research methodology
The research methodology chapter describes the procedure as steps leading to the objectives: what information is needed, how, where, when and by whom can this information
be obtained?
The following methods are available:
• Literature review
• Evaluation of statistical material and of existing documents (secondary data)
• Small experiments
• Observation techniques
• Interviews of experts and subject matter specialists
• Interviews of selected directly involved persons (formal, informal)
• Group discussions, Participatory Rural Appraisal tools, etc.
Key issues are access to persons and sources as well as the reliability and validity of data.
The phenomena in which we are interested are usually not directly observable or easily
obtainable. Therefore, indicators and criteria must be identified; in interviews, topics and
areas of interest must be translated into operational questions. Since the development of
standardised interviews normally demands quite some input for preparation and testing,
M.Sc. students rarely use them. Usually, interview guidelines with keywords (informal
surveys) are used and gradually adapted and improved.
The choice of the used procedures has to be explained; alternatives have to be developed
if necessary.
2.2.4 Theory
Empirical research has to be guided by theory. Used theories have to be mentioned explicitly, as well as the author’s assumptions. Perception and data collection are determined by
theoretical assumptions. For the selection of adequate research models your supervisor or
other persons with knowledge about the topic might be consulted for specific hints. Sometimes only some literature and no theories are available; in that case you should develop
your “own” by writing down your ideas, clustering them in a “model of investigation context” and use this as a research concept.
If several theories are available (from different disciplines) it is advisable to give a short
overview and decide on one. Give reasons for your decision. To be able to position your
own scientific contribution, it is also helpful to describe the state of the art of the ongoing
research on your theme. The research results have to be interpreted in relation to the theory described before. Theoretical considerations (partly) determine the selection of methods; therefore the methodology chapter is usually preceded by the theoretical part.
6
2.2.5 Results
In this chapter, the results are presented in a well-structured way and as a logical outcome
using the described methodology. In the presentation of the results we distinguish observation, interpretation and assessment, leading often to sub-chapters.
2.2.6 Conclusions
The conclusions interpret the results in terms of consequences. What is the significance of
what I found out and for whom is it important? What are possible practical implications?
The conclusions are deducted from the results and do not include new facts. They validate
the results in other application contexts, and discuss their implications for the various
stakeholders (decision makers, users, etc.).
Apart from these implications “for the field”, it is also common to formulate “recommendations for further research” and, especially relevant for our department, “recommendations for activities on information, training and extension”.
2.2.7 Summary
The next step after completing the first drafts of the main chapters is to write a summary.
This summary should be as short as possible (1-3 pages) and present the whole work. All
main chapters should be represented at least in one sentence or paragraph, including not
only the results but also the problem statement, objectives, theory, methodology and conclusions.
The limited size forces the author to concentrate on the main elements only. The essence
of the whole work will become visible and its consistency can be examined easily. Do the
parts fit logically together? Is the relationship between problem statement and objectives
clearly described? Do main results address the objectives? Are the results interpreted
critically enough with regard to the methods used? Do interpretations and conclusions refer to the mentioned theories or models? A summary in the (official) language of the
country in which the research took place has to be included as well.
2.3. Evaluation criteria
Guidelines on research quality are essential for both students and supervisors/evaluators.
Depending on the topic, perception, theoretical approach and the applied methods, empirical research work can lead to highly variable results and their quality cannot be assessed using “only” a fixed set of criteria.
Assessments depend on the quality of their arguments. Science is not a standardised enterprise relying on a fixed set of quality criteria. Criteria used in assessments are also
themselves subject to discussion. Therefore, criteria have to be transparent from the very
beginning. We would like to leave open which criteria at the end will be valid and their
relative contribution to the final score.
The table on the next page shows the actual assessment criteria we use to evaluate research papers. Some of them might need further explanation.
7
2.3.1 Problem statement and objectives
Uninteresting and irrelevant topics are a waste of time for both the author and the reader.
In selecting a topic, criteria based on personal preferences and opinion of the author play
an important role. However, their validity cannot be taken for granted. Therefore it is important to present, in the framework of a problem statement, the theoretical and practical
importance of the research in a logical and understandable way. Your objectives should
not only present the results to be achieved, but also discuss the kind of conclusions the
study aims at. The practical importance of research very often lays in the possible implications.
In complex problems it is advisable to narrow down the research topic. For instance, in
some cases just a part of the problem can be dealt with, or just with the theoretical basis or
methodology alternatives. This leaves room for others to continue with the other aspects.
2.3.2 Methodology
“Many roads lead to Rome.” No question has a single answer. Therefore, the selection of
the method to be used is a very important decision on which the quality of the results and
conclusions depends tremendously. Reasons should be given for made choices and alternatives have to be considered. Only in very rare cases in which empirical phenomena
cannot be researched at all, a research based on pure literature review is possible, but this
has then to be made plausible. In cases in which the issue can be researched directly it
would be very unwise to exclude personal observations and experiences and direct contact
with involved people. Even knowledge from only one case would improve interpreting
third person experiences and scientific reports. Besides, it is much more difficult to focus
on a literature review than on own empirical research.
Assessing the reliability and validity of scientific research (which should be included in a
literature review) requires personal experience in empirical research. Own empirical research includes also a literature review in which the state of the art of the research theme
and the underlying theory is presented.
2.3.3 Quality assessment
As mentioned previously, no research can be done without a theory or hypothesis. While
assessing the quality of a research the question arises whether the selected theory was useful to deal with the problem. Theory and practice should be visibly linked with each other.
If interpretations of results do not refer to a theory described earlier, the question arises on
which the interpretation is based, and what was the objective of the theoretical part in the
first place.
As far as other people are concerned, one can easily state lots of things, but we can only
approach reality if we first try to take other people’s reality seriously and describe this as
“authentically” as possible. The perception and opinion of involved persons is crucial in
developing solutions to problems and they should therefore be included in the research.
8
Assessment form for empirical research papers
Name
Title
Assessment
Comments, relevant pages
++
+
o
-
--
1. Problem statement and objectives
Context and specification of the problem / topic
Presentation of theoretical and practical importance of the study
Clarity of objectives
Derivation of intended conclusions
2. Methodology
Presentation of methodology alternatives to achieve the set objectives
Explanation and appropriateness of used methods
Transparency of procedures
Discussion of own experiences made during the study
3. Quality assessment
Overall view of theory, knowledge of literature
Presentation of the state of the art
Proportion theory – empirical work and reference
Authentic reproduction (view of involved persons)
Structure, order, logic, train of thought
Clarity of formulations
Precision, clearness, tables, graphs, quotations
Separation of presentation and interpretation of results
Plausibility of interpretations and conclusions
4. Format
Apparence, sources, quotations
Faultlessness
5. Extraordinary performance
Difficulty of the task, existing examples? New ground?
Independent, self-reliant
Commitment, work load
Specific scientific contribution
6. Further remarks
Suggested points:
Date
Signature
9
In quotation, use (if possible) the original or mention the original source. Indirect quotations from an often unknown context increase the likelihood of misunderstanding. In any
case, the distinction between direct and indirect quotations must be obvious to the reader
and the sources must be easily recognizable and be mentioned as closely as possible to the
quotations: no reader likes to turn pages continuously (See also 4.2.4.2).
Facts are easier to prove than their interpretation. In scientific argumentations the facts are
presented first, then their interpretation together with the motivation. Only in this way the
reader is able to assess the plausibility of interpretations and conclusions.
2.3.4 Format
Since the start of our series on “Communication and Extension – Social Science Publications on Land Use and Rural Development“ it became necessary to adopt a common format with regard to presentation and layout of texts. All documents produced within our
institute are subject to these guidelines (See chapter 4).
We presume that the prescribed formats are respected and a reader friendly document is
presented. Therefore, this aspect is not taken into account in your evaluation. However,
neglecting our rules is assessed negatively.
2.3.5 Extraordinary achievements
Extraordinary achievements such as working on a highly complex topic or on an unexplored research area, showing a high degree of independence or engagement, or obtaining
exceptional scientific results may be assessed as an extra bonus.
2.4. Concluding remarks
We hope this chapter has brought some clarity. It should provide some orientation at an
early stage for “users” conducting empirical research. The criteria and their clarification
should contribute to a better understanding between supervisors and facilitate the evaluation of students. If you still have questions please come and see one of the department
staff members.
Let us have more courage for conducting empirical research and come closer to reality!
10
3 Recommendations for literature on empirical social
research
The literature references mentioned below can provide a basis and some additional orientation for the use of methods on empirical social research. Please consult one of our staff
members before you go deeper into this.
General literature
FISHER R. A., 1990: Statistical methods, experimental design, and scientific inference. Oxford Univ.
Pr., Oxford, UB2: SF 2710.991.
FOWLER Floyd J., 1996: Survey research methods. 2. ed., Sage, Newbury Park, 156 p. (Applied social research methods series), UB: 7010/51(2).
MIKKELSEN Britha, 1995: Methods for development work and research: a guide for practitioners. Sage, New Delhi, 296 p. FGB3: 430A/4349.
NORUSIS Marija J., 1998: SPSS professional statistics 7.5. (valid through version 8.0) Ill. SPSS Inc.,
Chicago, 276 p. UB: ST 601 S69 N8.
Qualitative social research
CROTTY Michael, 1998: The foundations of social research: meaning and perspective in the research
process. Sage, London, 248 p. FGB: 430A 4783
DENZIN Norman K. (ed.), 1994: Handbook of qualitative research. Sage Publication, Thousand Oaks,
California, UB: 7120/222.
MORGAN David L., 1990: Focus groups as qualitative research. Sage Publication, Newbury Park,
California, FGB: 430A 4722.
SYMON Gillian (ed.), 1998: Qualitative methods and analysis in organizational research: a practical
guide, Sage, London, FGB: 430A 4781.
Statistics and SPSS-related literature
BRYMAN Alan, Cramer Duncan, 1999: Quantitative data analysis with SPSS release 8 for Windows: a
guide for social scientists Routledge, London, FGB: 430A 4827.
FIELDING, Nigel G., LEE Raymond M., 1998: Computer analysis and qualitative research Sage, London, 204 p., FGB: 430A/4782.
KINNEAR Paul R., Gray Colin D., 2000: SPSS for Windows made simple: release 10.: Psychology Pr.,
Hove. Inst. 540F4 3.2/28(13).
2
UB = Central University Library
FGB = Department Library
4
Inst 540F = Library of the Department of Psychology
3
11
4 Guidelines on lay-out and design of documents
4.1 Introductory remarks
For many years good quality documents had been produced within our department without the need for strict guidelines on their layout and design. However, in 1993 it was decided to publish together with our colleagues from Berlin and Gießen the so-called
“Green Series” (Kommunikation und Beratung. Sozialwissenschaftliche Schriften zur
Landnutzung und zur ländlichen Entwicklung), in which apart from PhD theses also Master theses of exceptional quality can be published. A common document format was
adopted. To avoid the tedious work of having to entirely reformat completed documents,
we request all students to follow the guidelines explained in this chapter.
A document series should bring together different documents under one roof. For this a
uniform appearance is desired. But also here exists the principle of “no rule without exceptions”. Authors with valid reasons are allowed to deviate from our recommendations,
but considerable deviations should be discussed with the supervisor, for instance with one
of the publishers of the series.
Furthermore it is considerably easier to apply these guidelines already from the first page
onwards than to reformat a finished document. Our recommendations have been developed with great care, are well founded and have been applied successfully in over 60 series documents.
4.2 Recommendations for the lay-out
In this part on layout recommendations all our guidelines are in use to demonstrate how
the text should look like. Unless mentioned otherwise, the guidelines refer to the Microsoft word processing software Word 2000 under Windows 98 or Windows 2000 Professional. However, all efforts were undertaken to make the guidelines also applicable to
other word processing software. In the following paragraphs the following topics will be
discussed: basics (4.2.1), page format (4.2.2), paragraph format (4.2.3) and other aspects
of text design (4.2.4).
4.2.1 Some basic remarks on word processing with computers
A computer is not a typewriter. Quite a few things must be handled differently. Unfortunately you don’t always get what you see: printed results differ sometimes from what is
shown on the screen. Layouts tend to change for instance considerably when computers
with other operating systems and/or word processing software or other printers are used.
What does this mean for your work?
1. Do the final lay-out only at the very end (incl. hyphenation) and then check with
a) the operating system
b) version of word processing software
c) the printer driver to be used for printing the final version.
12
2. Use templates (for headings, footnotes, etc.), enabling changes to be carried through
easily. Templates also save a lot of work on formatting during writing. If you don’t
know how to work with templates we advise you strongly to learn this.
A template file with the recommended formats is available at the institute. The file can be
copied at the secretary’s office or downloaded from our website (www.uni-hohenheim.de/i430a/index2.htm).
A text with a different format can be copied into the newly opened dot file using the
commands: insert Æ unformatted text. This avoids two formats competing with each
other leading to an uncertain outcome.
3. Never use spaces to create distances in the text, never use tabs to create indents.
Small or bigger distances in the text are
used frequently. Some examples are given
in the box: hanging indents in lists where
the second line has to start at the same
position as the first one; headings, in which
the second line should start right under the
first word and not under the number; tables,
in which the text, number or decimal point
should be positioned at a particular place;
directories in which both text and page
number should always start at a specific
position.
•
hanging indents in lists, the second
line starts at the same position
5.2 Hanging indent, second line starts
under the text
Green
Yellow
Here
5.01
12.13
There
16.85
4.36
2.2 Begin.............................................1
2.3 Centre ...........................................2
2.4 End................................................3
Spacing adjusts automatically around the
text when using proportional fonts (like
Helvetica, Arial, Times (New) Roman), making it difficult to arrive always at the same
position when using spaces. However, the real problem is that everything can be mixed up
when font, font size, margins or, as mentioned earlier, operating system, version of word
processing software or printer (driver) are changed. The same happens when the Tab key
is used to indent lines.
In order to avoid this, Tab stops are used to create distances between characters; second
and following lines of a paragraph are indented by formatting hanging indents.
When making lists, single line spacing (as used in normal text) is often preferred. This can
be obtained by using manual line breaks (Word: Shift + Enter) in which case no automatic
hyphenation occurs. The distance between bullets (list items) can be reduced in Format
Paragraph by putting Spacing Before as well as Spacing After at zero.
Foot notes, lists and headings are generally not justified; in these cases the text can be
aligned to the left using Align Left. To maintain narrow line spacing, manual line breaks
can be applied here as well.
13
4.2.2 Page setup
4.2.2.1 Paper size
DIN A4 (reduced to A5 in final printing).
4.2.2.2 Margins
Top 2,0 cm; bottom 2,5 cm; inside and outside both 1,7 cm. Gutter: 1 cm. This setting ensures, when printed, an extra 1 cm margin left on the front page and right on the back
page. The footers are positioned 1,3 cm from the lower edge. In Word the page number is
found on the outside of the footer, about 1,3 cm above the edge, and appears alternately at
the right and left side. Headers are positioned 1,25 cm from the upper edge, but they are
not utilized in our recommendations.
4.2.2.3 Page numbers
Bottom of page, outside, the odd page numbers always at the right side. Page numbering
starts either from the beginning of the text (variant 1) or from the half title (variant 2). The
book consists of the cover, the preliminary part, the actual text, the (literature) references
and the annexes. The actual text starts with the introduction. The preliminary part consists
generally of the following parts: Outside title (blank), half title (page 1), imprint (2),
foreword of the publisher (3,4), possibly foreword of the supervisor (5,6), possibly foreword and acknowledgements of the author (7,8), table of contents including summaries
(English, German, in some cases a third language), and annexes, lists of tables, figures
and photographs, abbreviations, possibly a glossary of technical terms or expressions in
the local language(s). These tables and lists all start on a new page. Then the actual text
starts with an introduction on an odd (right) page. In variant 1 page numbers continue
from the half title onwards till the end including biography and annexes.
In variant 2 the preliminary part from the half title onwards is numbered using Roman
numbers, and the first text page starts with the Arabic number 1. The advantage of variant
2 is that the pages can already be numbered without having to await the number and
length of forewords, etc. (normally written at the last moment).
4.2.3 Line format, paragraphs and page breaks
Line spacing is single. A spacing of 9 pt is added after each paragraph. Alignment is justified. In order to avoid large “empty spaces” it is recommended to put the hyphenation
zone (Tools Æ Language Æ Hyphenation) at 0.3 cm, to hyphenate “narrowly” using
manual hyphenation (Tools Æ Language Æ Hyphenation Æ Manual) or entering a hyphen in combination with a Ctrl-key (“conditional hyphen”, the hyphen remains “permanently” when it is inserted as such, even when the word appears in the middle of a line after rearranging).
Headings are preceded by a distance of 21 pt (added to the 9 pt from the previous paragraph). Headings start really on top at the beginning of a page, without any preceding
space. Various headings following each other should be avoided when possible, for instance by giving a brief introduction to the next part(s) on the same level. If this cannot be
avoided, the distances should be decreased (Format Paragraph, Spacing before 12 pt, after
14
0 pt). Headings are aligned left, because hyphenation in headings hinders a rapid absorption of the text and justified alignment without hyphenation causes unnaturally big distances between words. Readers must be able to grab the headers’ essence at once and the
use of hyphens should therefore be restricted to a minimum.
Right
3 Formatting of headings in this Extension and
Communication Series
Wrong: 3
Formatting of headings in this Extension and Communication Series
The paragraph has to be formatted with a hanging indent to let the second line start right
under the first word and not under the number. Instead of the additional distance of 9 pt
between paragraphs or 21+9 pt for headings, also one or two returns can be inserted. This
causes somewhat bigger distances between lines and more text on one line but the overall
picture remains balanced.
Solitary lines caused by page breaks at the top or bottom of the page (widows resp. orphans) can be avoided automatically by using (in Word) Format-Paragraph-PaginationWidow/Orphan control. If this doesn’t lead to satisfactory results, a page break can be inserted manually using a so-called manual page break (Ctrl. Return).
Also other pieces of text that belong to each other should not be separated by page breaks.
Avoid leaving headings at the bottom of the page, separating the announcement of a list
with “:” from the list itself, etc. Separation between a back page and a subsequent front
page is less bothersome than the other way around (in an opened book a back page is situated next to a subsequent front page).
New chapters (Heading 1) always start on a new page (often, but not forcibly a front
page).
4.2.4 Formatting of text
4.2.4.1 Fonts and font sizes
Print on laser printer, resolution at least 300 DPI, if possible Postscript fonts. In normal
text a Serif5 font with size 13 is used. (Postscript: Times Roman, otherwise for instance
Times New Roman).
Headings are always formatted with a bold sans serif font (Postscript: Helvetica, otherwise for instance Arial). Since in very small font sizes sans serif fonts are better readable
than fonts with serifs, we use them also at locations with little available space, like footnotes, inside tables and outlines, and for the bibliography where the use of normal font
would be a waste of space. The usual size is 11.5, only smaller in tables when there is no
5
Serifs are small decorative lines added as embellishment to the basic form of characters, keeping
the reader’s eye focused by giving the impression that they are written between two horizontal lines.
Fonts are often described as being serif or sans serif (without serifs). Longer texts in serif fonts are
considered more reader-friendly. However, this font is Arial 10.5, a font without serifs.
15
other option: try first narrow fonts like Helvetica Narrow or Arial Narrow before choosing
fonts smaller than 10.5.
The heading fonts are as follows: first level Arial 18 bold, second level Arial 16 bold,
third level Arial 14 bold, from the fourth level onwards Arial 12 bold. This last font (or
Times Roman 13 bold) can also be used for in-between headings, and as a last resort
Times New Roman 13 normal. Instead of using further intermediate headings important
keywords in the beginning of a new part can be emphasized in bold. Chapter numbers exceeding 4 or 5 levels should be avoided where possible.
Example:
1 Introduction
Arial bold 18 (21 pt above, 9 pt below)
1.1 Problem statement
Arial bold 16 (21 pt above, 9 pt below)
1.1.2 Historical context
Arial bold 14 (21 pt above, 9 pt below)
1.1.2.1 Influences of the colonial era
Arial bold 12 (12 pt above, 9pt below)
The period of the discoveries
Arial bold 12 (12 pt above, 9 pt below)
First discoveries
Times New Roman bold 13
(12 pt above, 9 pt below)
Headings of figures, tables and outlines or captions have the same font as the main text
with a somewhat smaller size (Times New Roman 12). The part before including the colon is written in bold (Table 123: or Figure 33: or Outline 5:, etc.).
In the table of contents the first order chapters have to stand out clearly (for instance in
Arial 13 or 14 bold, rest in Times New Roman 13). An example is shown in 4.2.4.4. Page
numbers are inserted using right aligned tab stops (Format-Paragraph-Tabs) with pointed
leaders (Leaders-Option 2), both using Times Roman normal 13.
Page numbers: Font Arial 12; Position: Bottom of page; Alignment: outside.
Footnotes: Font Arial 10.5.
4.2.4.2 Literature references and citations
Consulted sources must always be verifiable and authentic. Citations must for instance directly be traceable to the referred sources. The details should be precise, i.e. author(s),
year of publication and relevant pages should be mentioned (between parentheses) as
close as possible to the appropriate place. Names of authors are put in small caps6 , the
year separated from the name of the author(s) by a single space only and the relevant
pages separated from the year by only a comma, without space. Example: (CLEVELAND
6
Small caps are somewhat smaller than capitals, the latter being very overwhelming in the text:
compare HEINRICHSMEYER, G. 1984,27 with HEINRICHSMEYER, G. 1984,27.
16
1991,237). Two or three authors are mentioned in the same order as in the original title,
separated by semicolons (;). In the case of more than three authors only the first author is
mentioned and “et al.” is added. Publications of the same author in the same year obtain a,
b, c…. additionally to the year (e.g. HEINZE et al. 1993a,33). In the case of authors with
the same family name the first initial is added: (WERNER, J. 1998).
Apart from verifiability another important issue is authorship. Plagiarism is dishonest
and even punishable. Quotations have therefore to be marked with inverted commas
(“quotation marks”), if possible in addition with italics and a page reference is obligatory. The latter is also required when referring to statements or results, even if they are
not cited literally (e.g. MAIER 1900,30). Page references can be omitted when more general sources are mentioned, like a whole document instead of specific parts.
Indirect citing can be applied if the original source cannot be located: (original source,
cited in: secondary source) (MAUPOIL 1920,11; cited in: HERSKOVITS 1937,179). Three
cases can be distinguished with regard to reprints of earlier publications:
• If the entire book is a reprint, the citation is for instance: (author year,page) and the entry in the (literature) references is as follows: author, year of publication of the original, title, publisher and city of publisher, reprint from year, publisher and city of publisher.
• If the book is a revised version, the citation is: (author year of revised version,page)
and the (literature) references entry is as follows: author, year of revised version, title,
publisher and city of publisher of revised version, followed by reprint of publication
from year, publisher and city of publisher. In citations from second or later editions the
year of publication of the used edition is mentioned, whereas in the bibliography the
edition (xth edition) is mentioned after the city of publisher.
• In the case of a reprint of a publication from a compilation the citation is: author year
of original publication,page: ALBRECHT 1990,129. In the bibliography:
ALBRECHT, Hartmut 1990: Nachdenken über Beratung. Einsichten und Erfahrungen mit dem
“Training & Visit”-Ansatz der Weltbank. In: Berichte über Landwirtschaft, 68, 382-392. Cited
from: HOFFMANN, Volker (Ed.) 1992: Beratung als Lebenshilfe. Humane Konzepte für eine
ländliche Entwicklung. Margraf, Weikersheim, 129-142.
If cited from our lecture notes it should be checked whether a source of the used part is
mentioned, in which case the citation is: author, source, cited from..; otherwise the persons mentioned on the top right of the title page can be considered as the authors.
If internet is used as a source, not only the internet address should be mentioned additionally but also the date: websites can change quickly.
Simple references are mentioned in the text between parentheses. Footnotes are used
when several authors or sources are cited, or when comments are given (see also 4.2.4.5,
References).
References to other parts of the documents are made by mentioning numbers of chapters,
annexes, tables, figures or overviews. Page numbers are usually not specified (very labour
intensive, the reader can use the directories to find the appropriate pages).
17
4.2.4.3 Pictures, tables and overviews
Pictures, tables, overviews, etc. (usually depicted in “boxes”) are located as close as possible to the text in which they are referred to. In case of shortage of space, the box is positioned right on top of the next page, the resulting space being filled with text from behind
the box.
The titles have the same font as the main text, but are somewhat smaller (font size 12) and
their number including the colon with bold typeface. They are usually positioned on top
of the table, picture or overview. The title of pictures can also be placed beneath. Hanging
indents are applied to ensure that the second line of (longer) titles starts under the text and
not under the number. The distance between the title and the box is 6 pt, a little less than
the usual distance between paragraphs. Sources are mentioned underneath, also with a
distance of 6 pt, in Arial with size 10 or 10.5.
Inside tables and outlines usually Arial 10 or 10.5 is used. If necessary, somewhat smaller
sizes or Arial Narrow are also possible. Footnotes belonging to the table are integrated at
the bottom of the table. When using the % character no space is inserted between the
number and the character (100% instead of 100 %).
With regard to the table arrangement: in tables with one column only a single line is inserted between heading and data rows. Another single line can be added to separate a
(last) row with totals from the others. Inside the table double lines have to be avoided.
Only in the case of tables with two or more columns the title or total row can be separated
from the rest with a double line, but it is preferable to use a line with a larger width instead. The use of vertical lines is up to the author. In all cases tables, as well as figures
and outlines, should be framed with a single line border.
Over the whole page width
Table 1: Illiteracy rates in the research villages by sex and age group, 1988 (in %)
Age (years)
Atotinga
female
male
Houeto
female
male
6-9
85
68
64
50
10 – 19
84
54
40
20
20 – 29
88
63
72
38
> 30
98
86
88
59
Σ
90
69
68
48
Tables, figures or outlines exceeding the width of half a page are centred horizontally and
the space on both sides of the table is left empty. In the other cases the box is either left or
right aligned and the main text continues resp. at the right or left side. Table 1 is an example of a wide table.
18
Within the text
The same format as in normal tables is
applied (see Table 2). The distance between the surrounding text and the frame
should be approx. 0.5 cm, between table
lines and content approx. 0.15 cm or 3 pt.
Table 2: Distribution of religions on national
and village level
Religion
Benin
in %
Atotinga
in %
Houeto
in %
Voodoo
61.0
82.5
60.7
Acknowledgement of sources
Catholic
17.0
16.9
32.0
If the contents of the table, figure or outline are not or only partly based on the
author’s own research, acknowledgement
is required of the consulted sources, usually at the bottom of the box (see for
example Table 2). In figures or graphs
one often adds: after…., based on.., adapted from…., etc. Also legends, comments,
etc. are placed directly underneath or at
the bottom of the box, not in footnotes.
Protestant
5.0
-
-
Islam
15.0
0.1
1.9
Free church
and sects
2.0
0.5
5.4
Σ
100.0
Source:
100.0
100.0
FEDERAL STATISTICAL OFFICE
1988,20 and own data
Figure 1: Model of the psychological field
Route
Target
+
Individual
Barrier
Subjectively
perceived
environment
Source: ALBRECHT et al. 1987,70 after LEWIN 1963
4.2.4.4 Table of contents
Only in very voluminous documents an overview of the content limited to the main chapters (up to three levels) is given prior to the comprehensive table of contents, which in that
case starts at the backside of the overview.
An example of a table of contents follows on the next page.
19
Table of contents
Foreword of the publisher ...................................................................................................V
Foreword of the author...................................................................................................... VII
Table of contents................................................................................................................ IX
Glossary of abbreviations ................................................................................................. XII
1
Introduction (level 1) .......................................................................................1
1.1
Introduction and problem statement (level 2)..........................................................1
1.2
Objectives ................................................................................................................2
2
Methodology.......................................................................................................4
2.1
Development of a research strategy.........................................................................4
2.2
Deduction and description of the research methods ................................................5
2.2.1
Participatory observation (level 3)...........................................................................6
2.2.2
Oral history ..............................................................................................................6
2.2.3
Narrative interview ..................................................................................................7
2.3
Quotations................................................................................................................9
2.4
Summary..................................................................................................................9
2.5
Evaluation of the used methods.............................................................................10
3
Problem-oriented basis of the research ...............................................13
3.1
Specific responsibilities of female farmers............................................................13
3.1.1
On-farm labour ......................................................................................................13
3.1.2
Family labour.........................................................................................................14
.......
4
Results ................................................................................................................30
5
Conclusions......................................................................................................60
6
Summary ............................................................................................................64
7
References ........................................................................................................70
8
Annex ..................................................................................................................74
The sub-chapters can be slightly indented to stronger emphasize the different chapter levels.
20
4.2.4.5 References
The (literature) references start at a new page. The recommended font is Arial 10.5, line
spacing is single. After the first line the subsequent lines are indented approx. 0,5 cm
(hanging indent).
Author names are written in small caps, not only in the references, but also in the main
text (EINSTEIN) and in footnotes, tables, etc (EINSTEIN). Names of publishers or publishing
organizations are dealt with similarly. Other persons and organizations are entered as
normal text. In given names uppercase and lowercase are used as usual. Several author
names are separated by semicolons or commas. Up to three authors or publishers are mentioned fully by name, in the case of more than three only the first person is mentioned and
“et al.” is added.
Books are cited as follows: surname, given name or initials, year: title and subtitle. Publisher and publisher city, number of pages (optional).
Publications from compilations, proceedings, commemorative publications, etc.: the
title is followed by a full stop and “In:”, followed by the author (mostly the editor) or publisher: title of the compilation. Publisher and publisher city, number of pages.
In journals the author and title (of for instance the article) are followed by a full stop and
“In:”, followed by the journal name or its abbreviation (use only the journal’s own abbreviation), year (volume), issue (if applicable), number of pages. It is recommended to italicise the journal name.
In citations from documents in other languages the corresponding terms and abbreviations can be used, but the other details should be put in the same language as the manuscript.
In citations from documents in less common languages, a translation can be used adding
a footnote: own translation, sometimes followed by the original citation. The source is
mentioned in the text at the end of the citation. In the case of languages with other characters (e.g. Arab, Chinese, Japanese) the details in the references have to be translated as
well; an “*” is added in front of the author name and in a foot note the following: original
text in Arab, author’s translation.
Examples:
BARBER, K. 1989: How Man makes God in West Africa: Yoruba attitude towards the Orisha. In: Africa, 51(3). 724-745.
BIERSCHENK, Thomas; ELWERT, Georg; KOHNERT, Dirk 1991: Langzeitfolgen der Entwicklungshilfe:
Empirische Untersuchung im ländlichen Westafrika. In: Afrika Spectrum, 91/2, 155-181.
HOFFMANN, Volker (Hrsg.) 1992: Beratung als Lebenshilfe. Humane Konzepte für eine ländliche Entwicklung. Margraf, Weikersheim.
SCHÄFERS, B. 1989: Gesellschaft. In: Schäfers, B., (Ed.): Grundbegriffe der Soziologie. Westdeutscher Verlag, Opladen 110-114.
WISWEDE, Günther 1991: Soziologie. Verlag Moderne Industrie, Landsberg am Lech.
Further guidelines on citations and acknowledgement of sources were already given in
4.2.4.2.
21
4.2.4.6 Abbreviations
To keep texts understandable, the use of abbreviations should be kept to a minimum.
Common acronyms like e.g. (“exempli gratii” = for instance) and etc. (“et cetera” = and
so on) are accepted. Used abbreviations including uncommon units of measurement are
mentioned in a glossary. Spaces are not used in abbreviations, to abbreviations at the end
of a sentence no (second) full stop is added.
4.2.4.7 Bold, italics and other effects
A wide availability of different style effects, as also used in this document, allow a broad
format diversity. Old-fashioned effects like underline are avoided. A style should have
only one function where possible, for instance italics characterize quotations, special expressions, or foreign words. For other accentuations bold is used. For quotation marks
one style is sufficient, for instance “ ”. Quotations within quotations are then expressed
using single commas: ‘and’. USE OF CAPITALS is ugly, only small caps are used for
AUTHORS and EDITORS.
Shading of text (also in tables and outlines) is not recommended, and only applied to
serve a specific didactical objective that cannot be accomplished using other style effects.
In pictures and graphs shades can be useful when they are clearly distinguishable (also in
the legend), like white, grey, black. Hatching (shading consisting of multiple crossing
lines) and other black-white patterns are strongly recommended. They should be as distinguishable as possible with a maximum of 50 lpi (lines per inch). The effect should be
tried out by printing (half size, on the printer to be used for the final version!) or making a
half size copy of the full page. To avoid disturbing overlaps “moiré” or blotchy grey
shades, line drawings and text should be scanned at 600 dpi or more, graphs with surfaces
at 240 dpi.
4.3 Language and style
How do I write a scientific text, which is clear, comprehensible, interesting, concise and
understandable? Different language styles enable several ways of expression in one language. In a text nothing should be coincidental: transitions, connections, punctuations,
choice of tenses, words, word order and terms. In the following some stylistic guidelines
needing attention when writing are summarized (see also NICOLINI 2001, 60-99;
http://abacus.bates.edu/~ganderso/biology/resources/writing/HTWgeneral.html#style):
Definition of terms: As the reader generally doesn’t have the same background knowledge as the author, everything should be formulated clearly and explained well. Not
commonly used terms, mostly subject specific, should be defined (usually in a footnote,
never in a separate chapter on definitions of terms!).
Abbreviations must be used consistently and with care; preferably they are avoided.
Pompous use of language: often words or expressions like “regarding”, “concerning”,
can be replaced by “about”, “on”, etc. Also needless words should be omitted, some examples: “this subject” instead of “this is a subject that”, “because” instead of “the reason
why is that”, “though” instead of “in spite of the fact that”.
22
Scientific writing is not synonymous to use of inflated jargon, characterized by a fashionable imposing vocabulary. Giving them again their original meanings should rehabilitate
words that have become victims of inflation.
Sentence construction: avoid long complicated sentences hindering grasping the content
of the text. Break up sentences where possible, do not use too many subordinate clauses.
Paragraphs: give structure to the text and point out the line of thought. Make sure that
every paragraph has a clear topic sentence and that the paragraph content supports the
topic. Paragraph and sentence sequence should be logical, avoid the use of meaningless
conjunctions.
Use Active Verbs: Use active verbs whenever possible; writing that overly uses passive
verbs (is, was, has, have, had) is deadly to read and almost always results in more words
than necessary to say the same thing.
Active: “the mouse consumed oxygen at a higher rate...”
Passive: “oxygen was consumed by the mouse at a higher rate..”
The clarity and effectiveness of your writing will improve dramatically as you increase
the use of the active voice.
Use of the first person should not be avoided when applicable: use of “the author” or the
passive form suggest often an objectivity that is not there. It is important to distinguish
clearly between opinions, facts, interpretations, assessments and observations. Facts have
to be proven, assessments have to be argued.
Adjectives should be used sparingly to avoid platitudes caused by embellishment of (often imprecise) nouns.
Gender in language usage: using the same agent-noun for both sexes is often possible and
the simplest way to avoid linguistic sexism. More of importance is the use of pronouns.
One solution is to announce at the beginning of the document that the male form is valid
for both sexes and that no discrimination is intended, another alternative is to use a slash
between the pronouns (he/she, his/her). For more information, see for instance
http://archive.idrc.ca/books/edit/sg05e.html#femine .
4.4 Checking the text
• Checking should not only be done on-screen, but also in printed form that offers a total
picture as will be later presented to the reader.
• Start with examining the overall text and checking its consistency: for instance by
scrutinizing the headings as a whole and ensure that the order is logic and no essential
parts are missing.
• Delete everything not necessary for the text (superfluous words, not relevant ideas).
• Weak points are often only shown when the text is read aloud. In the course of the
proofreading the text should be read aloud several times and at the slightest disruption
23
the concerning section should be checked whether it can be deleted or modified (especially not fitting prepositions are more obvious when emphasized).
• Watch spelling, grammar and syntax. Own typing errors are often not discovered, it
is therefore recommended to use a spelling checker and make use of a proofreader.
• Do the verbs refer to the correct nouns? Are the active/passive forms used in a correct
way?
• Check the consistency of the use of tenses: research work has been completed, therefore the past tense is generally used throughout most of the document when referring
to the actual work, including statements about expectations or hypotheses. Use the past
tense, as well, when referring to cited work of others.
• Take care of a balanced syntax (proportion between verbs, nouns, etc.).
• Delete superfluous adjectives.
• Identify stereotypes and replace them by precise words and exactly defined terms.
• Replace nouns by active verbs where possible: “because it became darker” instead of
“because of increasing darkness”.
• Remove undefined, vague statements.
• Check carefully punctuation marks (hyphens, full stops, parentheses, symbols) and
remove superfluous ones.
• Check the sentence structure, especially the word arrangement, with special attention
for long sentences. Eliminate where possible run-on sentences, compound sentences; if
not possible, check carefully the sentence construction.
• Apply the “naked sentence” method to check if subject and predicate fit well together
by eliminating all unessential parts.
• Read individual paragraphs: check the content: is the message clear? Form clear
paragraphs which consists of several sentences, otherwise the text decomposes completely. Watch the transitions from one idea to the next.
• Headings should be short and clear and highlight the ensuing text.
• The message – what do I want to convey – should be an integral part of the read-through.
4.5 Design of the title page
The title page is the “bill board” of your work and should present the following information: university, institute name, department name, head of department, subject, title, student name, place, date (month + year), demanding/financing institution (if applicable). An
example is shown on the next page.
The title should be short and catchy and appeal to the reader. Farmers, snails and ducks.
Necessary additional information can be presented in the subtitle, which can be somewhat longer than the title. Farmers’ reactions in a Philippine village on the emergence of
the harmful Golden Apple Snail. Clichés like with special regard to are not appealing. At
the beginning of the research a work title can be formulated that can be changed at regis24
tering, handing over the final result (please advise the examination office) or even at
printing.
4.6 Declaration
A Master Thesis is a performance assessment. Therefore you have to declare under oath
that the thesis was accomplished independently, using only the literature mentioned in the
thesis and without submitting the thesis to another institution. Since it is of importance
that other students and interested persons have access to your work, you al-low with your
signature also exploring and lending out of your work in the institute’s library.
The text is as follows:
Declaration
Herewith I declare under oath that I accomplished this work independently and without out-side
help; in the document all consulted sources are mentioned as such and I have not made use of
any other resource.
The thesis has not been submitted for evaluation to any other assessment institute.
Furthermore I agree with displaying the document in the library of institute 430A implying the
possibility of its exploration and borrowing by others.
Date, signature
4.7 Handing in the document
Print your document double sided and on white paper. Furthermore, we would like to receive a separate copy of the summary of your document for interested persons.
To facilitate further editing of your material, you are also requested to hand over a copy
on diskette or CD. The text is saved in Word or pdf format, graphs and pictures additionally in PNG (Portable Network Graphics) format. Any use of your material will be requested in advance.
5 Evaluation and marking
Written part
On or before the established date two bound copies of the master thesis have to be submitted to the examination office (including the statement on the authenticity). From there, it
will be sent to the firs and second assessor. To accelerate the process, directly after registration at the examination office, you may also take the thesis to the respective departments, together with the examination sheet with the seal of the examination office. At the
same time you can already agree on the date of the defence of the thesis. It will take then
two to four weeks to mark the work (the criteria are mentioned in Chapter 4). Simultaneously with the marking, both appointed professors write an assessment or fill in the
evaluation form.
Even if you chose a second assessor from another institute, we request you nevertheless to
hand in two copies. One copy is kept for corrections and demonstration purposes in the
office of Prof. Hoffmann; the other is put on display in the library. Your signature under
“Declarations” allows that also third persons may have a look into your thesis.
25
Picture 2: Template for the title page:
Universität Hohenheim
Institut for Social Sciences of the Agricultural Sector
Department of Rural Communication and Extension
Master Thesis related to the module
<Title of the module>
Prof. Dr. Volker Hoffmann
Main title
Subtitle
submitted by
Name, given name
street
place
Hohenheim, date
This work was financially supported by the
<name of organisation / place>
26
Oral part
The date for defending your work is determined by both assessors in consultation with
you. The duration of the colloquium is 30-45 minutes and consists of the presentation of
your work (15 minutes, in which you present a summary of your research: problem statement, objectives, results, conclusions) followed by questions of the assessors. If the colloquium is held in a form of a seminar at which several people participate, it is advisable to
prepare a PowerPoint presentation or use an overhead projector. After the colloquium the
assessors establish the final mark together.
If the thesis was written together with fellow-students, the examination takes place collectively. For each additional person the duration is extended with 10-15 minutes (including
the presentation, of which each group member should be assigned an equal part).
6 Publishing of articles
In general research results should be made accessible to a larger public. Therefore, we encourage you to publish your results in relevant journals. This requires a supplementary effort, because it is not simple to preserve the essential content by reducing 80-120 pages to
only 10 or less. Concerning formatting, citations, etc., the guidelines of the journal have to
be followed. If your work is deemed publishable, our document series offers also possibilities.
27
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