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Student story: Admissions essay about a formative experience. Student story: Admissions essay about personal identity.
Student story: Admissions essay about community impact. Student story: Admissions essay about a past mistake. While some thesis supervisors will be eager to provide feedback as soon as you start producing writing, others may be inclined to wait until you've written the bulk of your thesis. The sooner you can get feedback, the better! Of course, the other side of the coin is that you need to get used to accepting feedback and, at your discretion, incorporating it into your work.
Make sure you are clear about which suggested changes are in effect required. A required change is one without which the supervisor won't approve the thesis. Suggested changes are just that, suggestions that can be accepted or politely declined. The final proofreading and formatting of your thesis can't be done in an hour or most likely even a day, so be sure to leave time in your timeline for those important tasks. A thesis really is forever, especially in the electronic age, and ideally it shouldn't be a source of embarrassment to you months and years down the line.
It's very likely that your thesis will quote from the works of others to some extent.
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You must acknowledge this use and provide an appropriate citation, but you do not need permission to use works in the public domain works on which a copyright never existed or on which copyright has expired. To determine if a work is in the public domain, go to the following website , made available through Cornell University. If you use copyrighted works, refer to Section of U. Copyright law, otherwise known as the fair use doctrine.
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All four factors must be considered when conducting a fair use analysis. The Fair Use Checklist is an excellent tool in making a fair use determination. Again, you must acknowledge the source of the content. If the use does not qualify as a fair use, you may not include the material without written permission of the copyright holder. For additional information, visit Penn State's Copyright Law website.
When requesting letters of permission, be sure the grantor is aware that the work will be made available to the public through Penn State's Electronic Theses and Dissertation website. Any letters of permission should be submitted along with the thesis cover page. You are solely responsible if you violate copyright law; Penn State will not be held liable. There is a very strong presumption in favor of fair use when citing scholarly work, the purpose of which is after all to be utilized in future scholarship; likewise, in scholarship about copyrighted works e.
Planning A Thesis. An ideal thesis project should do many things, including: Satisfy your intellectual curiousity Give you the opportunity to work closely with faculty mentors Develop transferable skills Clarify your post-graduation plans Quality In the end the single biggest factor in determining thesis quality is your level of interest in and engagement with the topic, so it's worth the time and trouble to consider multiple possibilities rather than going with the first one that seems attractive to you.
Purpose At this point it's useful to review the purpose of the thesis, from the SHC's perspective. Research-Oriented Majors You should avoid the temptation to stick with your first lab placement merely out of convenience if the topic is not interesting to you. A Thesis Needs A Thesis. From Interest to Thesis One of the major problems Scholars encounter is how to translate an interest in a topic into a thesis. Term Paper vs. Honors Thesis A term paper can be spectacularly ambitious, lengthy, and well-done but its only goal is to demonstrate that the student has mastered the material.
The feasibility of a given thesis problem is bounded, as mathematicians might say, by several factors including: Time Unlike a doctoral dissertation, which is ready when it's ready even if that turns out to be a year or more past the original expectation, the honors thesis shouldn't extend your time at Penn State by design.
Resources Resources are a potential issue in that even a comprehensive and well-funded university like Penn State doesn't have the physical infrastructure for every possible kind of research. Abilities The constraint that's least discussed but is probably most important, of course, is your abilities. Realistic Ambition Ambitious yet reasonable expectations for the thesis, in terms of what you will learn and how the final product will contribute to knowledge, are not uniform across all fields.
Proposal, Supervisor and Area of Honors. Thesis Proposal When is the thesis proposal due?
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The thesis proposal needs only two things: Topic What the thesis will be about Supervision Who will be supervising you The SHC staff doesn't review the content of the proposal, so the intended audience is your would-be thesis supervisor and the honors adviser in your intended area of honors. Thesis Supervisor Your thesis supervisor is the professor who has primary responsibility for — wait for it — supervising your thesis.
Don't put too much stock in second-hand information about a professor, but if after meeting him or her you have concerns then you should certainly consider continuing your search. While a good thesis can come of a strained supervisor-student relationship, it's not likely.
Area of Honors Major as Area of Honors The standard scenario is that a Scholar has one major and writes the thesis under the supervision of a thesis supervisor in that major. Area-Specific Requirements The honors adviser is the gatekeeper for any area-specific policies or requirements beyond the thesis itself. Honors Adviser An honors adviser from the area in which you are pursuing honors must read and approve your thesis. Multiple Majors If you have more than one major, you can do one of the following: Pick one major and write a thesis for honors solely in that major Pick a topic that can legitimately earn honors in both majors Write multiple theses, one for honors in each major The first scenario is the most common, followed by the second depending on how closely related the majors are.
Second- and Third-Year Entrants including Paterno Fellows If you were admitted to the Honors College after your first year or via the Liberal Arts Paterno Fellows program, you are expected to write your thesis for honors in your entrance major. Topic, Not Professor Typically, the area of honors suggested by the topic aligns with the professor's affiliation, as when you seek honors in history based on a history thesis supervised by a professor of history.
From Proposal to Thesis. Regular Meetings with Your Thesis Supervisor You should take proactive steps against procrastination by making yourself accountable to someone other than yourself. Plan Ahead Think ahead, preferably well before the time of your thesis proposal, about what your thesis work will mean for your senior year schedule. Workflow These distinctions among types of writing are important because they dictate different timelines for the transition from research to writing, and whether a clean transition even makes sense. Tricks of the Trade Regardless of the field, writing comes more easily to some people than to others, and for different reasons.
The Graduate School also offers a course on Planning and Preparing for your Thesis and Viva , which you may find helpful.
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Open access publishing makes your online scholarly work available, free of charge to anyone. It facilitates the discovery and sharing of knowledge and may be required by your research funder. In some cases it may be necessary to delay the release of a thesis to the public - this is referred to as an embargo. IP is the term used to describe creative outputs from scientific, engineering, literary and artistic endeavours that can be legally protected - such as the results arising from research.