Placement and Thesis
Full course description
During the second semester of the master’s year students will perform a research project. The aim of this project is to provide students with experience in various aspects of scientific research. The students select a research project themselves. This project can be carried out at different departments within Maastricht University or Maastricht University Medical Centre, but also at other national or international universities, hospitals, or (research) institutes, or research-driven (sports or health) organisations. The opportunity to go abroad for the placement provides students with a great way of gaining international experience, broadening their academic as well as their ‘life’ perspectives, and (based on experiences from many previous students) helps them prepare for an international career. The experimental work for the placement is generally done on an individual basis (under supervision), but can also be accomplished in ‘teams’ of 2 or (occasionally) more students. However the final thesis, which will be the report of this study, will have to be an individual product. To allow proper and timely preparation for the research project, students will select a research topic and supervisor during the first period of the master year (september/november). To this end, various running projects that can place an intern will be advertised, but students can also look for other options themselves.
In close consultancy with their supervisor, students write and agree upon a specific research question, select adequate methods to perform the experiments and chose appropriate techniques for analysing the data, including statistical analyses. The thesis will have the layout of a scientific paper from a specific Journal. Specific guidelines for the research placement and thesis are available.
The placement and thesis period provides 24 ECTS (i.e., 16 full time weeks), which is divided over an 8 week start-up period in which a part-time course is also performed, followed by a 12 week full time period.
Students who have successfully finished this part of the master programme are able to:
- Derive hypotheses for a study from current knowledge
- Design and perform a research project
- Analyse and interpret results of an experiment
- Present results in an organized and structured way
- Discuss the data and relate results and conclusions to initial hypotheses
- Write a scientific paper