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Thesis and Graduation

After passing all the tests of the training activities included in the study plan and having acquired at least 102 credits, the student, regardless of the number of university years, is allowed to take the final exam, which consists of the discussion of a dissertation. The MA thesis is a research work that demonstrates the candidate’s achievement of the learning objectives of the study programme and her/his ability to critically and originally analyze a research topic, and to present and defend the results in a public discussion.
The thesis supervisor is a professor or lecturer of the AGIC Course Programme. S/he can also serve outside AGIC and be affiliated with the Department of Cultures, Politics and Society, in one of the disciplinary areas included in AGIC, upon authorization from the President of the AGIC programme.

Certificates

After successfully defending the dissertation, students who are awarded the academic credentials in Area and Global Studies for International Cooperation can request the related certificate (pergamena).
They have first to contact the Segreteria Studenti (by accessing the Help desk - click on "Rilascio pergamena") in order to verify whether the certificate is already available, and then book an appointment on the CampusNet Agenda for Area and Global Studies for International Cooperation (please refer to instructions reported at the webpage Prenotazione appuntamento segreteria studenti).
In case of need, students are kindly invited to call upon a buddy (a current student at Unito) for support (buddy.cle@unito.it).


Types of MA theses

The types and objectives of the theses are agreed with the supervisor. The candidate shall choose one of the three following types:

  1. Thesis based on literature review and theoretical-scholarly discussion (T1)
  2. Thesis proposing an empirical study, based on clear theories and methodologies for data collection and analysis (T2)
  3. Thesis including a research-action: empirical study integrating analytical skills to normative objectives, e.g. including project design (T3)

T1A research thesis based on available scientific literature, presenting a critical and original analysis of the scholarly discussion over a specific topic, eventually proposing new theoretical or applicative perspectives

T2Empirical research including a literature review, data collection, possibly through primary sources e.g. fieldwork, and analysis. It presents methodologically valid results by providing original contributions in heuristic or theoretical terms.

T3: A thesis substantially based on a case study. The research process may include fieldwork. Through the analysis of the relevant literature and the application of appropriate methodologies, it leads to normative analysis and results suitable for the outline of a transformative action (e.g. a project of international cooperation, a policy plan, etc.).

All three types must follow coherent threads from theories to discussions and conclusions.

 

Language

Typically, the thesis is written in English. It can be written in another language among those taught in the programme upon motivated request approved by the supervisor and the President of AGIC.

 

Length, style and structure

The thesis must have a minimum length of 30,000 words.

The stylistic criteria are agreed with the supervisor among those prevalent in the scientific area of the research.

The structure of the thesis can typically follow the common standards, presented as follows, although freedom and creativity in academic research allow structural diversity.

  1. Introduction (introducing the topic and its scientific and societal relevance, short anticipation of the research question, structure and content of the thesis)
  2. Theories and concepts
  3. For theses 2 or 3 (T2-3): Presentation of the case study
  4. Research questions: broad for T1 and, for T2-3, also in relation to the case study
  5. Methods and data: for T1: what type of literature, and how is it interpreted and analyzed; for T2-3: methods of data collection, sources, ethical issues
  6. Results of the analysis: for T1: lessons learned, conceptual and thematic systematization, etc.; for T2: analytical results from data and information; T3: results are in forms of situation analysis, needs analysis, assets analysis, etc. that provide the basis for a project proposal. 
  7. Discussions: T1-2: abstract summary of the results, T3: normative summary, setting objectives and outline of a proposal. For T2-3, it includes risks and possible new ethical issues
  8. Conclusions: widening the scope, e.g. from the case study to more conceptual/abstract discussion in reconnection to the literature.
  9. References, following APA referencing style or other methods agreed with the supervisor

 

Research integrity

The thesis work must comply with the principles of mutual correctness between supervisor and candidate. Only original works that respect the integrity standards accepted by the scientific community are admitted to the final defense. For more information on research ethics and integrity, see: http://www.ibb.cnr.it/img/CNR_Ethics,_Linee_guida_per_l%27integrita_nella_Ricerca,_revisione_2019_ee5ce7.pdf (Italian guidelines), or https://publicationethics.org/ (international).

Plagiarism is an ethical infraction, an offense of authorship and copyrights. The final draft will be checked against plagiarism through the Turnitin software: https://www.turnitin.com/

 

Assessment and grading

The thesis is evaluated on the basis of the quality of the literature survey, conceptual discussion, clarity of the exposition, argumentative ability, methodological coherence, originality of the research setting and of the results. Against these criteria, the supervisor, together with a second examiner and the members of the examination committee can attribute 0-6 points. For theses of exceptional quality, the supervisor can propose a third written evaluation to justify two extra points, to reach a final grade of 8 points. The third examiner can be either internal or external to AGIC.

The grades will generally follow the following criteria for the three different types of theses:

Type 1:

0. The thesis is superficial and presents serious scientific flaws, lacking fundamental literature, presenting incoherent structure and poor language.  

1. It only includes vague ideas with little reference to the topics of the course curriculum and too scarce or no reference to the literature. The language is poor.

2. It includes some references to the literature, but only superficially and with descriptive presentation, while engagement with the material and analysis of the literature is lacking. The language presents diverse flaws. 

3. It shows some autonomous thinking and sufficient understanding of the main concepts and use of some literature. It proves good analytical skills.

4. It shows good understanding of the main concepts and scholarly debates presented in relevant literature and capacity to intersect different discussions.  

5. It shows good understanding of the main concepts rooted in the literature and makes use of them through clear analytical methodology and critical thinking. 

6. It is written in a good academic writing style. It shows good understanding and capacity to handle theoretical concepts. It presents excellent independent analysis rooted in the literature, scholarly debates, and other sources that support the argumentation. It contributes to new knowledge on the topic through original approaches either theoretically or methodologically.

Type 2:

0. The thesis is superficial and presents serious scientific flaws, lacking fundamental information, presenting incoherent structure and poor language.  

1. It only includes vague ideas with little reference to the topics of the course curriculum and too scarce or no reference to updated literature. Research question is unclear and not answered. There is no original data or analysis. The language is poor. 

2. It includes some references to the literature, but very limited and flawed. Engagement with the empirical case is superficial and there is a lack of coherent analysis. Research questions are not answered properly. There are sustainability and ethical problems. The language is poor.

3. It proves sufficient understanding of the main concepts. There is coherence between the chosen issues supported by the literature and the case study situation, and the proposed action. The action is interesting but has some practical and ethical flaws 

4. It shows independent thinking with good understanding of the main theoretical concepts rooted in updated literature debates. It shows good skills for data collection and analysis. analysis of the specific issue to be addressed, partners and beneficiaries, and the proposed action. It also shows good capacity of data collection and analytical skills, and capacity to plan an action.

5. It shows good understanding of the main concepts and makes use of them through independent analysis rooted in the literature. It is coherent, has clear research questions and a coherent scientific thread that brings to satisfactory responses.

6. It is written in a good academic writing style. It shows good understanding of the main concepts and presents excellent skills of handling methods for data collection and analysis. It is coherent, has clear research questions and they are well addressed. It provides relevant results, contributing to the acquisition of new knowledge.

Type 3:

0. The thesis is superficial and presents serious scientific flaws, lacking fundamental literature, presenting incoherent structure and poor language.

1. It only includes vague ideas with little reference to the topics of the course curriculum and too scarce or no reference to the relevant literature. The language is poor. Objectives and aims of the action-research are not clearly identified. The analysis is not conducive to reach the expected goals.

2. It includes some references to the literature, but very limited and flawed. Engagement with the empirical case is superficial and there is a lack of coherent analysis. Research questions are not answered properly. There are sustainability and ethical problems. The language is poor.

3. It proves sufficient understanding of the main concepts. There is coherence between the chosen issues supported by the literature and the case study situation, and the proposed action. The action is interesting but is not practical and has some practical flaws.

4. It shows independent thinking with good understanding of the main theoretical concepts rooted in updated literature debates. The action is practical and sound. It has a potential of success, especially through accurate knowledge basis of the local situation. Resources to be mobilized are considered.

5. It shows good understanding of the main general issue and theoretical framing. The thesis shows the relation between wider structures and specific problems. The relation between analysis and proposed action is coherent. The proposed action is solid ethically and potentially transformative on a sustainable way.

6. It is written in a good academic writing style. Wider objectives and expected results of the practical proposed action are coherent. It shows good understanding of the main concepts and presents excellent skills of handling methods for data collection and analysis. It proves local knowledge and understanding of cooperation or solidarity possibilities locally and globally. The plan of action is solid and sustainable.

 

A thesis laboratory is now active at the Moodle page https://elearning.unito.it/scuolacle/course/view.php?id=1121. After answering a questionnaire, students have the opportunity to access practical tips about writing the thesis, the videorecordings of Thesis Writing seminars, information concerning tools for research, and other material.    

 


Once logged into their MyUniTO profile, undergraduates most fill in the online graduation application form and following the session calendar

  • See the instructions at this link how to apply (in Italian),
  • Students must upload all the necessary documentation before the due date, so the department makes a printable version of the Thesis is title form available so students can get their supervisors to sign it,
  • Students are invited to pay their graduation fees as soon as the application procedure is open given that bank transfers can take several days.


You should submit your thesis via the University’s Online thesis service and it is recommended you read the procedure guidelines carefully. An abstract of the thesis will be published in the public archive of the Online Thesis service.


PLEASE NOTE
The Thesis online service only allows for changes before the due date. Uploaded theses CANNOT be replaced or edited afterwards.

So:

  • Students cannot make changes to their file once it has been uploaded;
  • Students can ask the Thesis online services to intervene to make changes to the file, but only before the due date;
  • No edits are allowed after the due date.

Should you decide to defer your graduation, you must fill in the relevant form and send it to the Student Office – Segreteria studenti. It is also necessary to cancel the graduation application from your MyUniTO profile. 

Graduation Deferral Form  (only in Italian)

The graduation calendar and information concerning deadlines and reserved calls are available at https://www.didattica-cps.unito.it/do/home.pl/View?doc=Laurearsi/tesi_laurea.html. The page is in Italian; a translation into English will be available in due time. In the meantime, students experiencing difficulties in understanding the page contents can ask for help to the teacher or corsistudio.cps.cle@unito.it.    

Once the deadline for submitting the graduation application has passed, a list of those who submitted the form before the due date will be published. Students who are not on this list, should contact the Student Enquiries Office or their Course office.

Just before graduation, information (date, time and place) concerning your particular session will be published.

Lists of candidates and graduation calendar

The Student Enquiries Office submits the calculation of students’ average to the Examining Board. It is the weighted average of the exams taken, ie the sum between each exam mark and how many credits it is worth, divided by the total of credits.
This calculation does not take honours into consideration.

The average is calculated with this formula:

(mark x credits) + (mark x credits) + (mark x credits)
             sum of credits with mark

For example:

(30 x 9) + (27 x 6) + (23 x 9)    =  26.625
                         24 

In order to obtain the average out of 110, do the following proportion:

average (out of 30) : 30 = average (out of 110) : 110
of which:        
average out of 110 =  average (out of 30) x 110
                                                                          30

from the previous example:

average out of 110 =  26.625x110
                                                           30
average = 97.625

PLEASE NOTE

  • The average calculated by the Students Office software can vary when rounding up compared to the student’s calculation;
  • The weighted average is available onlineby logging onto your MyUniTO profile

Last update: 01/07/2021 12:53
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