How do I write an exposé for my master thesis? 7 months ago
You are at the beginning of your Bachelor’s or Master’s thesis and your professor requires an exposé of you? You ask yourself, what belongs in the Exposé and how you build it the best? Answers to these questions can be found here:
What is an Exposé?
The purpose of the exposé is to provide an overview of the content of your thesis as well as the various steps that you plan over the time you spend working on it. It should, of course, make it clear to the supervising professor in the first place that you will work on a meaningful question with suitable methods and data sources and that you have dealt with existing research on this topic. However, students often mistake that a carefully crafted exposé can also serve as a guide for themselves. If you have thought enough about the framework, the structure, the methods to be used and the limits of your research project in advance, the actual paperwork becomes easier. And you do not run the risk to you go get bogged down. Conversely, the difficulty in creating the exposé is, of course, that you start with a blank sheet of paper. After all, the synopsis is the prelude to a generally three- to six-month writing period in which you will devote yourself to the topic of your Bachelor’s or Master’s thesis in great detail. In the exposé, the big questions have to be answered – even though you may not have researched all the sources on the topic yet and do not know one hundred percent what the results will be in the course of your research process. Of course, the synopsis cannot contain any substantive analyzes; You will do this as part of your writing time. The Exposé is rather a rough timetable – and this can be created bit by bit and then work off. So the exposé brings structure and order into your scientific work process right from the start.
10 things that belong in every exposé
Just as for the final thesis itself, an Exposé has formal requirements that can vary between universities, departments, and institutes. If in doubt so ask your supervisor for the formal requirements, before you make the creation of the Exposé. As a rule, exposés for bachelor theses and master theses are limited to three to six pages.
Your university or supervisor will decide on the individual form and scope of the exposé; however, the basic criteria for content seldom differ between higher education institutions and thesis supervisors. These ten points must not be missing in any Exposé:
On what occasion did you find interest or need to work on your topic? From what starting point do you start your research and scientific analysis?
At the beginning of each thesis is always a kind of problem. For example, so far your topic has been viewed and studied only under certain (inadequate) aspects or methods, and you want to change that with your work.
From this elementary first content of your exposé, all further steps result.
2. Current state of research:
Which previoThe currentries and findings exist on your topic? Before you write the exposé, you should get an overview of the literature and refer to the most relevant studies and research. Find out how to find out if you’ve found all the literature on your topic in this blog post.
3. Relevance of your own question
After you have outlined the current state of research, the answer to the question is why your thesis will enrich the field of research contentwise or methodologically. Why is it important for you to approach your subject from this particular angle? Which research gaps will you be able to close or how does your topic fit into the previous scientific context in this area?
4. Delineation of the topic
One of the most difficult tasks to start working on a thesis is deciding on the scope of the thesis. One of the most common mistakes that sometimes leads to stress and lack of time during writing time is too broad a topic. Even a thesis is limited in scope; So you should not expect too much and prefer to work on a narrow topic in detail rather than entering a “bottomless pit”. An excellent synopsis therefore contains a clear statement about which aspects you will deal with as part of your thesis – and also which ones you will not work on and why. Pointing out the limitations of your own research project not only prevents confusion and overburdening during literature research and writing, but also proves to your supervisor that you are capable of breaking down a complex topic to concrete issues – and that your approach is systematic and accurate.
5. Goal of the work
One of the most important points that must remain with the supervising professor following the exposé reading is a clear idea of the purpose of your work. Which central hypothesis is at the center of your analysis and what are possible outcomes that could be at the bottom of your research process?
6. theory train
Even if you yourself carry out data collection: The purpose of a scientific paper is also to refer new data sources to already researched theories and models. Which theories are suitable for putting, visualizing or comparing your research results in the broader context? You may be able to access your lecture notes here.
7. Methods and data sources
Secondary or primary analysis? Qualitative or quantitative data sources? After which procedure and with which methods are data collected, processed, evaluated and interpreted? This point is closely linked to the goal of your work. You should make it absolutely clear in the synopsis why you have decided on specific data sources and methods and how exactly this approach supports you in answering your central question. Whether you reach the goal of your work depends largely on the research method used. You should therefore pay increased attention to this aspect and reflect it in detail in the exposé. Often the exposé serves as a basis for a subsequent conversation with your supervisor, in which he can give you helpful tips on how to proceed. The more detailed you describe in the synopsis of your planned procedure, the more fruitful may also be the feedback from your supervisor.
8. Working title
Even if the Exposé is the first step to the final thesis and in the course of the processing time may well still change direction. An elementary component of an exposé is the formulation of a working title for the thesis, which at a glance clarifies the key points of the research project.
9. Provisional structure
The same applies to the structure. Of course no one expects you to have thought thr,ough your bachelor’s or master’s thesis to the last detail before you started the actual work. Your research process is likely to bring one or the other surprise with it. For example, you might come to the realization that you should give more meaning to one aspect of your topic that you have not considered so far, and another that will become less important. Nevertheless, try to create a meaningful preliminary outline from the current state of your knowledge, which you attach to the exposé. This step is not least important because you can use this outline to reflect the scope of your work again. After you’ve made a plan of all the definitions, theories, potential practice references, data analysis and discussion parts that you want to incorporate into your work, you may come to the conclusion that you need to narrow your topic a little bit more to get it within the given range To be able to process the frame appropriately.
Since not only the number of available pages in the preparation of a thesis is limited, but also your temporal resources need to be divided meaningful to work without time pressure to the deadline, it is also important to the Exposé a rough schedule to add. By what time should your literature research be finished? How much time do you plan for collecting and analyzing data? The better your approach is planned in terms of time, the easier it is for you to assess whether your ideas can be implemented and what adjustments you may need to make to achieve your goal.
With the perfect exposé
When creating the exposé, you should always keep in mind that its core objective is to present the structure and systematics of your scientific work as accurately as possible. In me such a guide can be built in no time at all. Create different categories of labels by identifying them in color and adding keywords to differentiate, for example, content and methodological aspects on the basis of which you write your exposé. Finally, using the outline view and the writing assistant, you merge all ten central components of your exposé in a sensible sequence. With such a perfectly structured Exposé, you not only convince every professor of your intention but at the same time, you also create the starting point for all further steps to create your Bachelor’s or Master’s thesis. In the course of your research and data analysis, you can fill the basic structure created for the exposé piece by piece with life, collect all your thoughts and ideas in one place and never lose track of the “timetable”! Try it for free!