Students accepted for POL801 will be assigned a supervisor by the Convenor. If you have informally canvassed a topic with a member of staff and wish to have him/her as a supervisor, ensure that you discuss this with the Convenor. However, a student’s first choice of supervisor cannot be guaranteed. Please note that your supervisor will not be the examiner for the dissertation.
You should have an idea of a topic before you enrol and ensure that it is one that is (a) focused on public policy; and (b) can be adequately supervised within the department. Additional information/guidance on choosing and developing a topic is provided below.
The supervisor’s role is to guide you in the choice of topic and development of the dissertation, not to read every draft of every chapter. Just as members of the teaching staff do not read draft essays, your supervisor will not necessarily read a whole final draft of a dissertation. Supervisors should, however, advise on whether the structure of the dissertation is more or less suitable and that it follows a coherent line of discussion.
You should keep in touch with your supervisor throughout the semester, let him or her know how the dissertation is developing, and ask for guidance when you need it. Don’t expect the supervisor to contact you, it is up to you to contact the supervisor.
Submission of Dissertation
Two copies of the dissertation should be submitted in the following form:
Provide two bound copies (this can be soft-bound, eg in a simple plastic spine with plastic cover, or hardbound). Note that these copies are not returned so if you want to have a copy to keep, you should print off a third.
ensure there is a title page, table of contents and a separate bibliography at the end
include a plagiarism declaration (using the words on the Faculty of Arts assignment cover sheets)
number all pages
do not exceed the word limit (which includes all notes and references).
include a word count on the title page.
- set line spacing: space and a half, or double spacing
The copies of your dissertation must be submitted to the MPP Administrator, Kelli-Lee Drake, in the Politics Office. Do not submit copies to your supervisor or to the Arts Faculty office on the ground floor.
Examination of Dissertation
Two examiners will be appointed by the Department, usually one examiner from within the Department and one external examiner. The supervisor is not an examiner.
Examiners will evaluate the dissertation with attention to the grading scale used for Masters of Research or Honours theses.