Purpose and topic of the Master’s thesis
The Master’s thesis is a written assignment on a well-defined topic. Students may start working on the Master’s thesis from the beginning of the second semester. The Master’s thesis shall prove that the candidate is capable of working independently on a practice-oriented task from the field of the degree programme in a given period of time; using scientific as well as practical methods.
Writing period for the Master´s thesis
The time allotted to the Master’s thesis (i.e. the time period from the date of issue to the date of submission of the Master’s thesis) is four months. In the case of an empirical or experimental topic, previous qualifications may be acquired outside the implementation period. The chairperson of the Examination Board shall decide on whether the Master’s thesis deals with an empirical or experimental topic after having heard the examiner appointed as supervisor of the Master’s thesis. The topic and the given task must be such that students can complete the Master’s thesis within the given time period.
How to find a Master´s thesis topic
A thesis is essentially a research project relating to your field of study. You can write about almost anything, but many students have a hard time narrowing down their choice of topics or specifically define their final topic. Here are some tips and techniques to help you choose the subject that interests you the most:
- choose courses and topics that match with your interests
- check out our MBA lecturers website and their respective research fields and areas of expertise and find a professor here to supervise you
- check out thesis topics and projects offered on websites of external research institutions or companies
- check the MBA Thesis topics list with Master thesis titles of students that already graduated from the MBA Programme (list only upon request via email@example.com)
- look for journals relating to your interests and check out some of the latest news and information published by other authors and scientists
- ask a teacher or a professor if they have thesis topics available
- for any further help, ask your MBA Support team: firstname.lastname@example.org
Check a list of proposals for Master´s thesis topics that can be supervised at our chair (coming soon!).
Check the list of Master´s thesis topics of MBA graduates.
Language of the Master´s thesis
The Master’s thesis is to be written in English.
Length of the Master´s thesis
The length of the Master’s thesis shall range between 18,000 and 20,000 words, depending on the form determined by the Examination Board.
Master’s thesis examiners
Upon the student’s request, the Examination Board may also appoint a contract professor or a lecturer with particular assignments to supervise the Master’s Thesis if it is obvious that the topic cannot be supervised by a professor at the Department of Management Sciences. Possible examiners of the MBA in CSR & NGO Programme can be found on the "Lecturers of the MBA Programme" Website. For any individual request, students have to contact their prospective supervisor via E-Mail by offering first idea on their Master´s thesis topic, ask for the possibility to being supervised and request an appointment date.
Writing the Master´s thesis in a company / an organization / an institute
With the consent of the Examination Board, the Master’s thesis may be completed at a facility outside of Bonn-Rhein-Sieg University if it can be sufficiently supervised there by an external supervisor, however at least one of both examiners for the Master’s thesis must be a member of the Department of Management Sciences. In this case, your external supervisor has to fill in a separate form "Declaration for External Examiner".
Admission to the Master’s thesis
According to Article 19, paragraphs 1-4 of the Examination Regulations of 2016, Students shall be granted admission to the Master’s thesis if they have acquired at least 30 ECTS credits through their examination performance during the first and second semesters. The Examination Board decides on students’ admission to the Master’s thesis. Admission shall be denied if the requirements according to paragraph 1 of the Examination Regulations of 2016 are not fulfilled or if the documents are incomplete.
Request for Admission
The Request for Admission shall be filed with the Secretary's Office on Campus Rheinbach in written form (printed or digital via E-mail to email@example.com). The student has to provide all necessary information on page one of the document, the second page will be filled out by the supervisor and administration.
Student´s right to withdraw from the request
Before the Examination Board announces its decision on the request for admission, students may withdraw the request in writing without stating the reasons and without this having any effect on the number of attempts allowed to pass the examination.
Student´s right to reject the thesis topic
Students may, without stating the reasons, reject the thesis topic only once and only within the first three weeks of having been assigned the thesis. In the event of a student re-taking an examination, this procedure is only allowed if the student has not exercised the option of rejecting the topic when implementing the first thesis.
Issue and due date of the Master´s thesis
The chairperson or deputy chairperson of the Examination Board, Prof. Dr. Wilhelm Schneider, is responsible for issuing the Master’s thesis. The date on which the Examination Board notifies the student about the topic of the Master’s thesis and the examiners is defined as the date of issue; this date must be documented.
Extension of writing period
In exceptional circumstances, the Examination Board may extend the time allotted to the thesis by a maximum of four weeks; students must request such an extension prior to the deadline, specifying the reasons. The supervisor’s opinion on the request shall be heard.
Extension of writing period in case of illness
If the implementation period is to be extended due to illness, a sick note must be attached to the application. Students who are unable proceed with their Master´s thesis due to illness shall provide evidence of their illness-related inability by submitting a corresponding sick note from a doctor. If the illness takes more than four weeks, the topic of the Master’s thesis may be returned; the first try shall not be assessed as failed.
Declaration in Lieu of Oath
When submitting the thesis, students must declare in writing that they have carried out the thesis independently, using no other resources than those documented and, in the case of quotes, indicated by references. Furthermore, they shall declare that the thesis is neither identical nor bears any similarities whatsoever with a thesis carried out in a previous degree programme.
Submission of the Master’s thesis
The thesis shall be bound and submitted in triplicate, along with three digital versions, to the chairperson of the Examination Board by the date specified. The digital versions (provided, for example, on CD-ROMs) shall be attached to the three copies in a file format that can be generally accessed (e.g. pdf and txt, doc or rtf without access protection). The submission date of the thesis shall be documented. There are two options to submit your Master´s thesis:
1. Submission on site (in person or by third person)
Please hand-in your thesis on site at the Secretary's Office on Campus Rheinbach
1st floor in B-Building, Room B 131
Office staff: Ms Heike Lösch / Ms Stephanie Schmidt
Opening hours during the semester:
Monday to Thursday: 10.00 am - 11.30 am and 12.30 am - 2.00 pm
Fridays: 10.00 am - 11.30 am
During the semester break from Monday to Friday: 10.00 am - 11.30 am
Telephone number: +49 2241 865 401
Beyond the opening hours of the Secretary´s Office on Campus Rheinbach, please submit your Master´s thesis at the reception desk on Campus Rheinbach, 1st floor in A1-Building, information desk at the left side in the corner
Opening hours (Campus Premises)
Monday to Friday: 7 am - 10 pm
Saturdays: 7 am - 7 pm
Telephone number: +49 2241 865 598
2. Submission via post mail
In case you are out of town on submission date, you can also send the thesis by postal mail. The time of delivery to the post-office is decisive, these points have to be followed:
- When the MT is sent via postal mail the student has to make sure to do that within the deadline! Deadline for handing MT over to the postal service is the regular MT deadline.
- To prove that the MT is on its way and was sent on time, the student has to send the scan/picture of the receipt (time, date & recipient visible!) as well as a pdf version of the MT via email to the secretariat in Rheinbach and put the MBA support team in carbon copy (CC) of your e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com
- It is the student's responsibility to check the arrival of the MT. That means to check the tracking number of the delivery and to inform the university of any delays due to errors of the delivery service or potential hold-ups at customs.
Please use the following receiving address of the university:
University of Applied Sciences
B-Gebäude, Raum B 131
Confirmation of submission of the Master’s thesis
Please have your Registration sheet at hand when submitting your Master´s thesis on site. The Secretary´s Office at Campus Rheinbach (or the staff at the reception desk at Campus Sankt Augustin or Campus Rheinbach) will confirm the timely submission of your Master´s thesis in written form on your registration sheet by entering the due date, by signature and university stamp.
Assessment of the Master’s thesis
The Master’s thesis shall be assessed by two examiners (first and second supervisor). The thesis is normally assessed through a report of the first supervisor, which is to be produced within 8-12 weeks after submission date. One of them must have supervised the thesis. If the examiners disagree in their assessments, the grade for the Master’s thesis shall be determined by the arithmetic average of the individual grades if the difference between the two grades is below 2.0. If the difference is 2.0 or more, a third person shall be appointed by the Examination Board. In this case, the arithmetic average of the two best individual grades shall account for the final grade. However, the Master’s thesis may only be assessed as ‘sufficient’ (4.0) or better if at least two of the grades are ‘sufficient’ (4.0) or better. All assessment must be accounted for in written form. All master’s thesis’s are checked for plagiarism.
In case of a failed Master’s thesis
If a Master’s thesis has not been passed, a new Master’s thesis may be submitted once.
Repetition of a passed Master’s thesis
If a Master’s thesis has been awarded a pass, it is not possible to submit a new thesis.
Belated submission of a Master’s thesis
A late submission of the Master’s thesis is not eligible for the concerned examination period and so won´t be accepted.
Results of the Master’s examination
The Master’s examination shall be awarded a pass if all the examinations involved as well as the Master’s thesis have been assessed as being at least ‘sufficient’ (4.0) or ‘passed’. The Master’s examination shall be assessed as failed if one of the examinations has been definitively assessed as ‘insufficient’ or ‘failed’. The student shall be officially notified that he or she has failed the examination and forfeited the entitlement to the final examination; he or she shall also receive an official letter with instructions concerning rights of appeal.
Any further questions on the Master thesis registration and writing process?
Read the "Master thesis"- Section in the FAQ´s for MBA Students