Motivation Lecture Master seminar, January 2007. Contents Introduction Importance of regular work Theses with programming Publishing your work Conclusion.
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Contents Introduction Importance of regular work Theses with programming Publishing your work Conclusion
Introduction Six months to complete a master thesis – this is a very short period. It was a good idea to start thinking about the thesis well before. But even if you are starting now, you can still produce a fine result if you work hard. Pre-project that you have completed can serve as a starting point for your thesis.
Introduction Why should one invest a lot of effort in writing a good master thesis? –If you are thinking about continuing doing research (e.g. PhD thesis), this is an opportunity to gain experience. –If you are planning to work in the industry, your prospective employers will be interested in your thesis. A good thesis may be a decisive factor in accepting your application.
Importance of regular work Many students ”forget” about their master theses for some period, typically until the end of March. Then they start panicking. Our experience says: the earlier you start and the more regularly you work on your thesis, the better the results are. This is especially important for the theses that include a lot of programming.
Importance of regular work You should meet your supervisor regularly, for example every two weeks. You should also contact your supervisor if something is not clear to you or if you have some other problem – be active! Inform your supervisor regularly about your achievements, experimental results (provide all the details!), opinions, etc.
Theses with programming To be a good programmer is clearly an advantage, but: –A master thesis is not a programming project. –Scientific research uses programming as a means to obtain scientific results. If programming is essential for your thesis, you should finish with making your program on time – this is difficult, because large programming projects are likely to contain a lot of bugs.
Theses with programming Tips about writing programs: –Don’t waste valuable time on writing GUIs, validating input data and anything that doesn’t affect the results of data processing directly. –Your program should be finished by March 1st at the latest. Then you should start experimenting, because getting experimental results takes the most of your time.
Publishing your work An ideal sequence in the preparation of a master thesis: –Getting valuable scientific results –Writing one or more scientific articles and publishing them –Writing the introduction and the conclusion around a published article – you get the thesis. –Submitting the thesis.
Publishing your work Our problem – short time for thesis preparation It is highly unlikely (although not impossible) to publish an article somewhere before the thesis is complete. Alternatively, one can write a good thesis and extract one or more articles from it afterwards.
Publishing your work A good method of writing a thesis – write an article first (about 12 A4 pages) and then expand it to the size of the thesis. Why should one bother to publish? –By writing an article you gain experience in writing technical reports – they are needed in the industry too, not only in a research institution. –A significant contribution to your CV – for ambitious job seekers.
Conclusions Having written a good master thesis is a big advantage in your professional career – no matter whether you already have a job or you are looking for a dream job. Start working on time – avoid writing the thesis at the last moment. Be careful with programming – use it as a means to get results, not as a goal by itself.
Conclusions Contact your supervisor if you have a problem - be active! Reserve enough time for experiments. Try to publish your work – get experience in writing technical reports and increase your chances by improving your CV! Good luck!