How long does a Dissertation defense last

how to write a research report presentation and how to make dissertation presentation and how long is a dissertation presentation how to structure a dissertation presentation
Dr.JohnParker Profile Pic
Dr.JohnParker,Singapore,Researcher
Published Date:01-07-2017
Your Website URL(Optional)
Comment
Dissertation Guidelines Year DISSERTATION GUIDELINES MSC RADIOGRAPHY Department of Radiography Faculty of Health Sciences University of Malta 2012 Dissertation Guidelines for MSc Radiography Students 0 DISSERTATION GUIDE TABLE OF CONTENTS DISSERTATION GUIDE ......................................................................................................... 3 Purpose of this guide ...................................................................................................... 3 Purpose of the dissertation ............................................................................................ 3 The research area ........................................................................................................... 5 The research proposal .................................................................................................... 5 Ethics and confidentiality ................................................................................................ 8 Project management ...................................................................................................... 8 Dissertation supervision procedure ................................................................................ 9 Schedule of events - Dissertation progress .................................................................. 13 WRITING THE DISSERTATION ............................................................................................ 14 Abstract ......................................................................................................................... 14 Chapter 1: Introduction to the study ........................................................................... 14 Chapter 2: Literature review ........................................................................................ 15 Chapter 3: Research Methodology ............................................................................... 16 Chapter 4: Results ........................................................................................................ 17 Chapter 5: Discussion .................................................................................................... 17 Chapter 6 - Conclusions and recommendations ........................................................... 18 Academic style, referencing, presentation and creativity ............................................ 18 Word Count ................................................................................................................... 18 Appendices .................................................................................................................... 19 Bibliographic Management Software ........................................................................... 19 Plagiarism ...................................................................................................................... 20 Dissertation Guidelines for MSc Radiography Students 1 DISSERTATION GUIDE Turnitin .......................................................................................................................... 20 Important tips ............................................................................................................... 21 Dissertation Submission Checklist ................................................................................ 22 Useful Information ........................................................................................................ 24 Final Submission of Dissertation ................................................................................... 24 Appendix 1 ........................................................................................................................... i Student Dissertation Progress Sheet (SDPS) .................................................................... i st 1 supervisory meeting ................................................................................................ i Appendix 2 ........................................................................................................................ viii Student Dissertation Progress Sheet (SDPS) ................................................................. viii nd 2 supervisory meeting ............................................................................................ viii Appendix 3 ........................................................................................................................ xiii Student Dissertation Progress Sheet (SDPS) ................................................................. xiii rd 3 supervisory meeting ............................................................................................ xiii Appendix 4 ........................................................................................................................ xix Submission of dissertation for examination ................................................................. xix Declaration of submission ........................................................................................ xix Appendix 5 ........................................................................................................................ xxi Master of Science Student Progress Report ................................................................. xxi End of Semester report ............................................................................................. xxi Appendix 6 ...................................................................................................................... xxiv Submission of dissertation for examination ............................................................... xxiv Student declaration for authenticity ...................................................................... xxiv Dissertation Guidelines for MSc Radiography Students 2 DISSERTATION GUIDE DISSERTATION GUIDE PURPOSE OF THIS GUIDE This document aims to guide MSc radiography students through their dissertation. A guide of this nature cannot cover all the aspects of the dissertation process in detail and it is inevitable that it will not answer all of the students’ questions. For this reason it is recommended that students pursue additional reading. Furthermore, students are advised to discuss any further questions they may have with their assigned supervisor and co-supervisor (if any). Students should take time to read this guide before they start their dissertation. This guide should provide an idea of what is expected, and should help ensure that students do not waste valuable time simply because they were unaware of some aspects that are covered. It should also help students prepare for their dissertation more effectively, in terms of planning the approach and managing time. Any issues that students are unsure about should be clarified with the assigned supervisor, at an early stage, before they become problematic. PURPOSE OF THE DISSERTATION The dissertation forms an essential component of the Masters degree. It provides a way for students to demonstrate their ability to present and analyse problems and to evaluate and analyse findings through the conducted research and that of others. The learning outcomes for the dissertation (study unit code RAD5010) state that on successful completion, the student would be able to: • Identify their learning needs to enable them to undertake a planned project; • Successfully compile a research proposal; • Demonstrate and justify the rationale for their chosen research; • Provide evidence of successful submission of an application for ethical approval; • Work effectively with a multidisciplinary research team (where applicable); Dissertation Guidelines for MSc Radiography Students 3 DISSERTATION GUIDE • Demonstrate an in depth understanding of their chosen research method(s); • Demonstrate an in depth understanding of the analysis of their prospective data; • Analyse and discuss research data; • Understand effective ways of presenting research results and findings; • Make use of the acquired knowledge and skills gained, if attempting to write a paper for publication; Furthermore, by the end of the dissertation, the students should gain the following skills and be able to: • Intellectual skills o Summarise and demonstrate the relevance of other workers’ findings to the presented work; o Demonstrate an appreciation of, and analyse ethical issues in research within this field and respond to them appropriately; o Evaluate their chosen methodological approach; o Critically evaluate and analyse current literature pertinent to their chosen research; o Undertake research which meets appropriate ethical standards; o Present, defend and debate findings. • Practical skills o Plan and manage a research project; o Present information in a succinct, accurate and logical way; o Produce a completed research dissertation. • Transferable skills o Engage confidently in academic and professional communication with others; o Reflect on the quality of their work; o Use computer-based software and techniques effectively. It is important that students understand these outcomes and achievable skills, as they will be expected to demonstrate that such learning outcomes and skills have been achieved through the process of completing the dissertation. Dissertation Guidelines for MSc Radiography Students 4 DISSERTATION GUIDE THE RESEARCH AREA Students are generally expected to submit their research area for consideration to the Department of Radiography, at the beginning of year two of their postgraduate studies. The responsibility is on the student to demonstrate the relevance of the research area to the course of study. Students are encouraged to choose something that they find interesting and should attempt to focus on a particular problem/question which the research will attempt to address. Work which is totally descriptive should be avoided. When formulating ideas about a proposed research area, it is essential that students undertake some preliminary reading around the subject. Students are encouraged to discuss their research ideas with academic members of staff within the Department of Radiography. These initial discussions allow for some brainstorming concerning the area of study, eventually helping the student to refine their ideas, focus the area of research and identify the appropriate methodology. These discussions may also lead to a re-assessment of the viability or originality of the intended work. Furthermore, these discussions may make the student more aware of other works in the intended area of study, and may eventually allow for further consideration to the availability of, and likely access to, personnel and other resources. THE RESEARCH PROPOSAL Students are generally expected to submit a finalised research proposal to the Department of Radiography and the University Research Ethics Committee, during the second semester of year two of their postgraduate studies. The research proposal is an important working document which eventually builds the foundation for the dissertation. Used correctly, the proposal will become the students’ road map through the dissertation process. The main structure of a research proposal will be similar to the final structure of the dissertation, and it should provide the reader with a general idea of the area of study as well as an indication of the methodology to be used. Dissertation Guidelines for MSc Radiography Students 5 DISSERTATION GUIDE The research proposal will show that the student has thought through what the main research aim/questions and underlying objectives are to be, that the main sources of primary and secondary data have been identified and that the student has given due consideration to the research methodology and data analysis. The research proposal should ultimately provide the reader with a ‘detailed skeleton’ of the whole dissertation, and should generally include: (I) TITLE Students should try their best to come up with a title that is less than 10 words. While this may eventually change it is recommended that students attempt precise wording that helps indicate the focus of the dissertation. (II) AN INTRODUCTION TO THE TOPIC This will include a brief description of the topic, the aim, research objectives and/or research questions to be addressed. Students should be attentive to the difference between research aims, research objectives, and research questions.  The aim of the research provides a description of what the student wants to achieve from carrying out the research.  The objectives of the research should outline the particular issues that need to be addressed in order to achieve the research aim set out. They are more specific than the aim, in that they outline the particular dimensions of the research topic, which are relevant to the overall aim of the research.  The research questions are more specific than the research objectives and specify the various insights/information that need to be collected in order to achieve the objectives. Students should keep in mind that the research question often starts with a Why, How, or What? Dissertation Guidelines for MSc Radiography Students 6 DISSERTATION GUIDE (III) A PRELIMINARY LITERATURE REVIEW Students are expected to provide a brief literature review and background to the area of study, as this indicates: (i) that the student has considered the work of the major authors in the research field (ii) that the student is familiar with the major themes relevant to that subject area (iii) what further investigations are being proposed by the student to pursue as part of this dissertation. The student should bear in mind that the review of the literature is necessary in order to be able to develop sharper, more insightful and focused research questions about the research topic. Therefore, the literature review should lead to and justify the research aims, research questions, objectives and/or hypothesis set out by the student. (IV) THE RESEARCH METHODOLOGY The methodology section should discuss what methods the student is going to use in order to address the research objectives of the dissertation. The student needs to justify why the chosen methods were selected as the most appropriate for the research study. (V) PROPOSED RESEARCH PLAN The student should propose a practical research plan indicating how the student is proposing to complete the dissertation by the submission date. This may be provided in written text or graphically in the form of a Gantt chart. Dissertation Guidelines for MSc Radiography Students 7 DISSERTATION GUIDE ETHICS AND CONFIDENTIALITY It is imperative that students consider any ethical implications that the proposed research might have, seeking advice from the assigned supervisor early where there is any degree of uncertainty. Students will not be allowed to do anything considered unethical. Ethical approval can take a considerable amount of time so it is important to plan well ahead. Students must consider questions of confidentiality and the implications of any legislation governing the use of personal data, especially in respect of its storage and manipulation on computers. Students should also acknowledge that they may require permission from the hospital data protection officer as well as the Chairperson or Manager of the clinical department. Students MUST seek and obtain ethical approval from the Faculty Research Ethics Committee (FREC) as well as the University Research Ethics Committee (UREC) prior to pursuing any aspect of the study, other than the literature review. More information concerning the procedure to be followed when applying for ethical approval from the FREC and UREC may be found on the University of Malta website: FREC: http://www.um.edu.mt/healthsciences/resources UREC: http://www.um.edu.mt/urec/gpropform PROJECT MANAGEMENT It is good practice that students set and try to adhere to deadlines, for their own good as well as for the benefit of those involved in the research. Students should acknowledge that data collection can take longer than anticipated, and therefore they should allocate adequate time to ensure that this is carried out within a reasonable timeframe. Students are encouraged to start as early as possible, in order to help avoid being under unreasonable pressure to finalise the data analysis and write up of the dissertation. Students should also give due consideration to the cost implications of the study. Dissertation Guidelines for MSc Radiography Students 8 DISSERTATION GUIDE DISSERTATION SUPERVISION PROCEDURE This section is based on the ‘Principles of procedure on the supervision of Masters’ 1 dissertations and doctoral theses’ as issued by University of Malta, June 2010, and outlines the principles to be adopted by supervisors in guiding students through their dissertations. A primary supervisor will be appointed by the Board of Studies (BoS) of the Department of Radiography to provide guidance and advice to students on projects leading to the writing of a dissertation or thesis; such guidance shall be provided during the origination, planning, execution and bringing to completion of the project and the writing of the dissertation or thesis. If the nature/topic of the research requires the input of another specialist the BoS may appoint a co-supervisor, in which case the two supervisors shall meet the student together to decide how they will divide their responsibility for advice and how future meetings are to be arranged. When a co- supervisor is appointed, the primary supervisor shall retain the ultimate responsibility of leadership in supervision. I. THE PRIMARY SUPERVISOR o An academic staff member from within the Faculty of Health Sciences appointed by the Department of Radiography BoS, who can guide and support the student through the research process o Reading for or in possession of a Doctoral degree in the case of Masters or Post Graduate Diploma programmes. II. THE CO-SUPERVISOR o An academic staff member of the University of Malta or external expert who can provide advice on the project. The Co-Supervisor will be appointed by the BoS following consultation with the Primary Supervisor. 1 http://www.um.edu.mt/registrar/students/Procedures_for_Supervision_of_Masters_Dis.pdf Dissertation Guidelines for MSc Radiography Students 9 DISSERTATION GUIDE III. ROLE OF SUPERVISORS o Supervisors are encouraged to read and follow the ‘Principles of procedure on the supervision of Masters’ dissertations and doctoral theses’ as issued by University of Malta. o The Primary Supervisor is responsible to organise and schedule a minimum of three (3) supervisory meetings with the student at which the co-supervisor (if appointed) should be present and keep a record of the minutes of these meetings. It is recommended that at meetings should be scheduled as follows: 1. Prior to submission for ethical approval  Primary and Co-Supervisor (if any) evaluate the proposed ethics proposal form 2. Prior to any data collection  Primary and Co-Supervisor (if any) evaluate methodology and tools for data collection 3. Prior to submission to the Board of Examiners (BoE)  The Primary and Co-Supervisor (if any) evaluate draft of written dissertation/thesis o The Primary and Co-Supervisor (if any) are responsible to provide written feedback to the student. o The Primary Supervisor is responsible to submit a Student Dissertation Progress Sheet (SDPS) to the Head of Department for each of the three (3) meetings Appendices 1, 2, 3. The SDPS sheets are to be signed by the student and Primary and Co-Supervisor (if any). o Supervisors are not responsible for proof-reading the dissertation/thesis and it is not the supervisor’s responsibility to ensure that the work presented for examination (the finished dissertation/thesis) does not contain plagiarised parts. o The supervisory role ceases when the dissertation/thesis is submitted for examination. The Primary Supervisor will signify formally in writing that s/he is aware that the student is submitting the work for examination by the BoE Appendix 4. Dissertation Guidelines for MSc Radiography Students 10 DISSERTATION GUIDE IV. ORAL PRESENTATIONS o During the course of the research study, every student will be expected to deliver three presentations, each of 7-minutes duration, to an audience of fellow students and members of staff within the Department of Radiography. Each presentation is followed by 3 minutes of question time/discussion. o While allowing students to further develop their presentation skills, these oral presentations also serve as a means to monitor students’ progress, as they are purposely scheduled at the beginning; middle and end of the course of the research study (refer to Schedule of Events). o Each presentation should generally include details pertaining to the:  Research aim, objectives and/or research questions  Research plan  The progress achieved so far  Possible issues/problems encountered or anticipated  Future plans/goals V. PROGRESS REPORTS TO BOARD OF STUDIES o Supervisors shall submit the ‘FHS Master of Sciences Student Progress Report’ to the Board (Appendix 5) for each student under their supervision, at the end of each semester of studies. o Such reports may include recommendations to either: (a) extend the period of study in order to enable the student to complete the dissertation; or (b) terminate studies prematurely if the supervisor deems this to be proper in the circumstances, provided that: (i) the extension of the study period referred to in (a) shall be in accordance with the provisions of Principal Regulations; and (ii) the Board may not terminate studies prematurely according to (b) until it has first given the student a chance to be heard. Dissertation Guidelines for MSc Radiography Students 11 DISSERTATION GUIDE VI. BOARD OF EXAMINERS AND VIVA VOCE  Following submission of the dissertation, each student will be required to defend the dissertation in a viva voce examination that is held with the appointed BoE.  The Primary Supervisor or Co-Supervisor shall not normally be part of the BoE for a Master’s dissertation (refer to ‘Principles of procedure on the supervision of Masters’ dissertations and doctoral theses’ as issued by University of Malta).  The Chairman of the BoE shall invite the Primary Supervisor to attend as an observer during the viva voce examination conducted by the BoE but the Primary Supervisor must withdraw prior to the final deliberations of the BoE. Dissertation Guidelines for MSc Radiography Students 12 DISSERTATION GUIDE SCHEDULE OF EVENTS - DISSERTATION PROGRESS The Board has an agreed schedule of proposed dates of when the students should indicate their research area/idea; meet up with their appointed supervisor/s; submit the research proposal to relevant Board/s; deliver oral presentations; submit the final dissertation; and attend for the viva voce. These proposed dates are indicated in the schedule of events listed below: M.Sc. Course Feb intake Event M.Sc. Course Oct intake Submission of research area/idea November, Year 2 March, Year 2 to the Department of Radiography Appointment of Primary Supervisor December, Year 2 April, Year 2 (and Co-Supervisor, if any) st 1 Supervisory Meeting January, Year 2 May, Year 2 st 1 Oral Presentation January, Year 2 May, Year 2 Submission of research proposal February, Year 2 June, Year 2 to Department of Radiography Submission of research proposal March-April, Year 2 July-September, Year 2 to FREC and UREC November-December, March-April, nd 2 Supervisory Meeting Year 3 Year 3 nd 2 Oral Presentation January, Year 3 May, Year 3 rd 3 Supervisory Meeting March, Year 3 October, Year 3 rd 3 Oral Presentation April, Year 3 November, Year 3 Final Submission to BoE May, Year 3 December, Year 3 Viva Voce June-July, Year 3 January-February, Year 3 Dissertation Guidelines for MSc Radiography Students 13 WRITING THE DISSERTATION WRITING THE DISSERTATION ABSTRACT Word count: 300 words - Mark: 5% The abstract should be no more than 300 words and not be longer than one page (single line spacing). A good abstract is difficult to write and can only be completed after the full dissertation has been finalised. It should offer an overview of the dissertation; the nature of the area of study and why it was explored; the key research questions; the methodology used; and the key results and conclusions. In this regard, the abstract should be structured as follows:  Purpose  Objectives or Research Questions  Methodology  Results  Conclusions CHAPTER 1: INTRODUCTION TO THE STUDY Word count: 1,500 - Mark: 10% The introduction should provide an overview of the research study in a clear and concise manner and it should address the following:  The reasons for selecting the area of study, stating the problem being investigated  A preliminary literature review and background to the area of study  The purpose of the study, whereby the research aim, research questions and relevant underlying objectives and/or hypothesis are made explicit  The study’s relevance and significance and how it adds to the theoretical body of knowledge in the field  A brief overview of the research methodology, outlining any limitations and assumptions  The overall structure of the dissertation Dissertation Guidelines for MSc Radiography Students 14 WRITING THE DISSERTATION CHAPTER 2: LITERATURE REVIEW Word count: 8,000 - Mark: 20% The main reasons for the inclusion, in a Masters dissertation, of a literature review section are:  To present and to analyse, in a critical manner, that part of the published literature which is relevant to the research topic and which acts as the basis for a fuller understanding of the context in which the student is conducting the research.  To show that the student has discovered and reported what was found to be relevant in the literature, while also providing details of the sources and search strategies used  To show that the literature found by the students was understood and analysed in a critical manner. Students are reminded that being critical does not mean looking at the negatives only but rather forming an evaluation.  To provide a discussion and analysis of the body of knowledge with the ultimate goal of determining what is known, and to identify any gaps in the coverage of the topic, in order to justify the reason(s) for the research and to draw appropriate inferences.  To show that students know what the key variables, trends and ‘actors’ are in the chosen area of study, i.e. show that students are aware of the important issues that need to be investigated.  To enable readers to be able to measure the validity of the choice(s) of research methodology, the appropriateness of the process by which the student will analyse the results, and whether or not the research findings are congruent with the published research. Dissertation Guidelines for MSc Radiography Students 15 WRITING THE DISSERTATION CHAPTER 3: RESEARCH METHODOLOGY Word Count: 5,500 - Mark: 20% This chapter is that part of the dissertation where the student has the opportunity to justify to the reader the process by which the research aims / questions, which were derived by an analysis of the relevant literature, were answered. The term ‘methodology’, particularly when employed in the social sciences, does not just mean method, but should also include the governing philosophy behind the methods employed. As a guide, this chapter should:  refresh the reader’s memory about (a) the problem being investigated, (b) the research aims / questions posed to guide the researcher in fulfilling the purposes of the study, (c) the hypotheses to be tested (if any).  Include a description of the method chosen and why it was the most appropriate.  Provide a detailed account of the research methodology, data gathering and analysis process in order to enable replication of the study  Include a discussion of ethical considerations relevant to the study  Acknowledge any weaknesses, difficulties or limitations associated with the chosen methodology and to discuss how these were overcome or minimised Although each study will vary depending on the method and analysis technique chosen, the following aspects are typically addressed:  Description of research design, including details of the internal validity and external validity  Description of population together with a description and justification for the type of sample / sampling technique used (if any)  Description of how the data collection instrument was developed, including details about the pilot study, and the reliability and validity testing performed  Detailed description of data collection method (e.g., questionnaires, interviews, observations, content analysis)  Description of the coding of data and how it was analysed  Description and justification of statistical tests and analysis performed Dissertation Guidelines for MSc Radiography Students 16 WRITING THE DISSERTATION CHAPTER 4: RESULTS Word Count: 1,500 - Mark: 10% NOTE: It may also be possible to unite Chapters 4 and 5 and have a combined ‘Results and Discussion’ chapter, with a collective word count of 8,500 and a mark weighting of 30% This chapter presents the results from the data analysis only. This chapter does not include discussing other research literature or the implications of the findings. Most studies are likely to have a large amount of data which has to be considered. This must be organised and presented in a logical and structured manner. It is important that students present those findings that are relevant to their research aims/questions and not include all that was found out. Usually the initial part of this chapter should outline any descriptive analyses performed. This should be followed by findings resulting from appropriate inferential statistical tests conducted (if any). Research results may also be appropriately presented in graphs, diagrams, pie-charts, tables, etc. CHAPTER 5: DISCUSSION Word Count: 7,000 - Mark: 20% The purpose of this chapter is not just to reiterate what the student has found but rather to discuss what the findings mean in relation to the theoretical body of knowledge on the topic. This chapter should also demonstrate that the objectives set out were met through the findings. In this regard, this chapter should be more than descriptive, and the student should discuss the findings in relation to the theoretical framework introduced in the literature review. Any major differences and similarities between literature and the study findings should be highlighted. Where appropriate, the student may need to introduce new literature - particularly with qualitative research. This chapter also should address the significance and practical implications of the findings, together with a discussion of the strengths and limitations of the research. Dissertation Guidelines for MSc Radiography Students 17 WRITING THE DISSERTATION CHAPTER 6 - CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS Word Count: 1500 - Mark: 10 % In this chapter the student should present conclusions and propose recommendations. The student should summarise the work of the dissertation and draw relevant conclusions based on the evidence obtained from the study. No new material or references should be placed here. The conclusions should make a statement on the extent to which each of the research aims, questions, objectives and/or hypothesis have been met. Students should be careful not to make claims that are not substantiated by the evidence presented in the earlier chapters. This chapter should also include any recommendations for further research, as well as any implications for practice as drawn from the research findings. ACADEMIC STYLE, REFERENCING, PRESENTATION AND CREATIVITY Mark 5% The APA System of Referencing should be adhered to as required by FHS guidelines. A mark will be awarded for overall academic style, presentation and creativity. The dissertation should be in a formal academic style. Furthermore it is recommended that students make use of vocabulary that is gender-inclusive. WORD COUNT The dissertation should have a word count of approximately 25,000 words. Any diagrams, illustrations, tables or charts will be considered to have the same word count as the page space they occupy (1 page is equivalent to approximately 200 words). Students should note that the Board of Examiners may take the final word count into consideration when deliberating the mark to be awarded. Dissertation Guidelines for MSc Radiography Students 18 WRITING THE DISSERTATION APPENDICES Appendices may be used to provide relevant supporting evidence for reference but should only be used if necessary. Students may wish to include in appendices, evidence which confirms the originality of their work or illustrates points of principle set out in the main text, questionnaires, and interview guidelines. Only subsidiary material should be included in appendices. Appendices should be organised in the order that they are referred to in the text. Students should not assume that Appendices will be read by Examiners in detail, and they should be aware that no marks are allocated for this section. BIBLIOGRAPHIC MANAGEMENT SOFTWARE Students are encouraged to become familiar and make use of bibliographic management software, such as Refworks. The use of such software will help in the organisation of references and allows for bibliographies to be easily presented in any of the major referencing styles, saving a lot of valuable time for the student. Refworks is available for University of Malta registered users, and allows users to create a database of references by importing citations for books, articles from online databases (such as CINAHL, Cochrane Library, PsycInfo, and others) and the Library’s Online Catalogue. The references can then be used for creating bibliographies for dissertations, long essays, papers and assignments. The University of Malta Library occasionally organises familiarisation courses in Refworks. Further information may be found from • Refworks (UOM) http://www.um.edu.mt/library/researchtools/bms Other bibliographic management software also exist. These include: • EndNote - http://endnote.com/ • Zotero - www.zotero.org Dissertation Guidelines for MSc Radiography Students 19