A Note to Students:
Completing a senior thesis will likely be the most challenging and rewarding experience of an undergraduate's career. Students undertake thesis research and writing for various reasons—to see if they want to pursue research opportunities post-graduation, because they are excited about studying a question that has never been answered, or simply because it is a requirement for a joint concentration! Regardless of the motivation, they should carefully consider their investment and commitment to conducting research and writing during your senior year (and likely the preceding summer).
What are the expectations of a senior thesis student?
- Work with a faculty advisor to define a research question that can be reasonably addressed within the time frame and physical constraints (available funding, lab equipment, etc.).
- Become familiar with the literature necessary to address the research question.
- Address the research question under the direction of the faculty advisor to the best of the student’s ability. This may involve sample collection, laboratory analysis, data collection, coding, creating models, conducting statistical tests, etc.
- Meet with the faculty advisor regularly (preferably weekly), beginning the summer before the senior year and continuing through the oral presentation in May.
- Work with the advisor to create a timeline of research tasks and thesis writing.
- Ideally, complete most of the research project during the summer, fall, and January term, leaving the spring semester to focus on writing.
- Enroll and participate in EPS 99A and/or EPS 99B (both semesters strongly recommended).
- Submit the registration form, thesis description, mid-year progress report, thesis draft and final thesis according to the deadlines set by the UCC (see timeline in this document).
- Present research findings at a mid-year (December) and final (May) oral presentation.
The successful completion of a senior thesis makes a student eligible to be considered for English honors from the department.