Writing a Masterful Master’s Thesis: Demystifying a Graduate Program Right of Passage

pp1Ah, the good old Master’s thesis.  Nearly every college and university Master’s program requires students to write an acceptable Master’s thesis before they can graduate with a degree. While many graduate students shudder at the thought of researching and writing the mandatory Master’s thesis, they needn’t fear it.  This form of academic writing exists as a culmination to the Master’s program; its goal is to encourage original thought and research to investigate an issue useful to the discipline in which a student is earning a degree.  Unlike other forms of academic writing, the Master’s thesis is more intense and demanding.  It requires time and attention to detail: procrastinators need not apply!  Most universities set aside credits specifically for the Master’s thesis.  It exists as a class with a faculty mentor assigned to guide the student through the arduous process of forming a viable Master’s thesis, conducting research, organizing a logical argument, and ultimately presenting the paper during a thesis defense.  A well-constructed Master’s thesis takes the better part of a semester if not longer to finalize.  Just getting started on this academic undertaking?  Here are the basics to help demystify the aspects of a masterful Master’s thesis.