What is a Thesis Exposé, do I need it for my Thesis and what should I pay attention to? Here are the guidelines for the exposé of your thesis.
How do I find the right thesis topic?
Your thesis will take some time to complete. Therefore, you should choose a topic for your thesis that at least interests you, and better yet, excites you. Something you’re passionate about and feel like really diving into. Ideally, and to simplify your thesis, you also have some prior knowledge of the topic. This can also benefit you at the latest when you defend your thesis.
The topic of your thesis is either given to you by your professor, or you can choose it yourself. It just has to have something to do with your field of study. First of all, you should look into the exact requirements of your study program and find out whether a scientific or practice-oriented focus should be implemented and whether there are any specifications regarding the scope of your thesis.
Ask your professor
In almost every university you can go to a consultation with your professor. There you can roughly explain which topics you are also involved with outside of your studies. Together with your professor, find a connection to your studies and work out a topic.
Are there any recent publications in your field, perhaps? Check the optional seminar reading or the journals in your library. You can find many current sources on Google Scholar or other online databases, for example.
Write down any ideas, experiences, and anything else that comes to mind. Under each topic, you can collect bullet points and write down what you already know about it and how much the topic interests you.
Past seminar papers
Maybe you’ve already written a cool term paper and can tie in with the research? Are there any questions that are still unanswered from your point of view? Were there any lecture topics that particularly interested you?
Exchange ideas with other fellow students
Meet and interact with your fellow students . Often the thoughts of others already bring you to a good topic. In the same way, of course, you can ask friends and family who are not experts.
Do you already know what you want to do for a living after graduation? Then it would be beneficial to write your paper on a topic from the industry that might interest and impress your future employer.
Your already gained experience
Your experience as an intern or working student can help you in choosing a topic. Ask leaders or staff and get inspired.
Why write a synopsis?
One of the most important parts of your thesis is the exposé. But why actually? The synopsis is a scientific project plan that helps you to formulate the research question precisely, to narrow down your topic, and to give you a structured overview of the content and schedule of your work.
The synopsis should serve as a guideline before the actual writing of your thesis. Often the exposé is required by your supervisor after you have chosen your topic and possibly already dealt with the problem or question.
However, the exposé is not binding. Because your ideas, structures or even your title can always change during the writing process of your thesis. Especially in the beginning, the synopsis can help you sort out your thoughts and ideas.
An exposé has many advantages. It helps you get an overview of your ideas and organize them. Also, you can impress your supervisor with the fact that you have studied the topic and it is relevant. Best of all, it can save you a lot of time writing later. It also serves as a basis for discussions with your supervisor to avoid misunderstandings and to comply with university guidelines.
The contents of an exposé for your thesis
So now we know that the synopsis is an outline of your planned scientific work. But what actually belongs in the exposé and how is it structured?
Here you write a brief introduction and presentation of your research topic and justify its relevance.
Objective and state of knowledge
At this point, you describe what you want to have found out at the end of your research project and why.
State of research and theoretical basis
Now you give a small overview of the existing literature and a theoretical basis for your research.
Your concept is the most important element in your synopsis. At this point you present your hypothesis, your research question and also your methodology.
Then, even if your outline is not final, you can structure and list your ideas.
This is where you tabulate your schedule .
Last, show your correctly cited review of your sources used and literature relevant to you.
What do I have to pay attention to in the exposé for my thesis?
It is important for your exposé to clearly formulate your topic, the research question and the objective. Make sure you have a concise and appropriate working title and that your timeline and deadlines are set. It is also important to make sure that you adhere to the appropriate criteria of your university with your cover page and document formatting.
Frequently asked questions about: Thesis Exposé
Edited at: December 7, 2022