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2014/2015  KAN-CIBCU2000U  Master's Thesis

English Title
Master's Thesis

Course information

Language English
Course ECTS 30 ECTS
Type Mandatory
Level Full Degree Master
Duration One Semester
Course period Spring, Autumn
Timetable Course schedule will be posted at calendar.cbs.dk
Study board
Study Board for MA in International Business Communication
Course coordinator
  • Margrethe Mondahl - MSC
Main academic disciplines
  • Globalization, International Business, markets and studies
  • Communication
  • Organization
  • Language and Intercultural Studies
Last updated on 10-07-2014
Learning objectives
The Master's Thesis shall document the student(s)’s skills in applying scientific method and theory in the work with a delimited academic problem as well as the student(s)’s ability for academic concentration.

After having completed the Master’s Thesis process, the student must be able to:

•handle an iterative process in which processing of knowledge and drafting the problem statement are interrelated;

•draft a problem statement that facilitates control and structure in the student(s)’s work on the thesis and its content;

•argue the wording of the questions that are answered in order to solve the problem;

•explain and evaluate the methods used in answering questions and solving the problem ;

•select and process the theory used in the drafting of the problem statement and questions, analysis and conclusion;

•argue the relevance and validity of the theories used;

•select and process primary and secondary sources used to document analysis and problem solution;

•explain and evaluate the overall relation between: drafting the problem statement, choice and application of theories, collection and processing of empirics, and conclusion;

•explain the overall relation from a theoretical science perspective.

The grade 12 is awarded in cases where the Master’s Thesis meets the following requirements to an excellent degree, i.e. with no or only few deficiencies:
  • the thesis is governed by a student-developed problem statement which is relevant to the programme;
  • the thesis is delimited to the effect that its analyses and discussions are relevant, necessary and adequate to answer the problem;
  • the thesis is based on the relevant, current research literature relevant to the topic
  • the thesis contains a discussion of and reason for the choice and omissions with respect to subject delimitation, theories, methodology and empirics (if empirics are included);
  • the thesis provides critical reflection on the selected theories, methodology and empirics (if empirics are included) and assesses their applicability in answering the problem statement;
  • the thesis is consistent to the effect that the choice and application of theories and empirics interact and complement the production of knowledge (applies to empirical theses);
  • allegations made in the analysis and conclusion are documented and/or argued;
  • the analysis focuses on a delimited problem, i.e. provides an in-depth analysis and creates a synthesis on the basis of theories and empirics, where relevant;
  • the thesis discusses the premises of the theories and the impact of those premises on the knowledge that can be created .
  • the thesis contributes to a new perspective, e.g. by applying a known theory on previously unexamined empirics or - only for theoretical theses - new (combinations of) theories applied on a known problem.
Master's thesis:
Exam ECTS 30
Examination form Oral exam based on written product

In order to participate in the oral exam, the written product must be handed in before the oral exam; by the set deadline. The grade is based on an overall assessment of the written product and the individual oral performance.
Individual or group exam Individual
The thesis may be written alone (max. 80 standard pages of 2275 units) or by two persons (max. 120 sttandard pages og 2275 units). The oral examination is individual.
Size of written product Max. 80 pages
The thesis may be written alone (max. 80 standard pages of 2275 units) or by two persons (max. 120 sttandard pages og 2275 units). The oral examination is individual.
Assignment type Master's thesis
Written product to be submitted on specified date and time.
60 min. per student, including examiners' discussion of grade, and informing plus explaining the grade
Grading scale 7-step scale

The student’s spelling and writing skills are taken into consideration in the overall assessment of the examination performance, but the academic content is given the highest weight.
Regulations regarding the summary The resumé must be written in another language than the thesis itself.
Examiner(s) Internal examiner and external examiner
Exam period Summer Term and Winter Term
Make-up exam/re-exam
Same examination form as the ordinary exam
In case the student is ill at the oral defense of his or her Master's Thesis a new oral exam will be arranged based on the thesis already handed in. If a student receives a non-passing grade at the regular exam he og she must hand in a revised version of the thesis, or a thesis based on a new or revised subject, after conferring with the supervisor.
Description of the exam procedure

The thesis is usually written in the fourth(4) semester. It should be the last element of the programme to be  completed. The Study Board may grant an exemption from this rule in cases of special circumstances.

The assessment is carried out by the supervisor and an external examiner.

The grade is a comprehensive grade that includes the written thesis as well as the oral examination.

The grade awarded will reflect  the academic content as well as the student's ability to spell and communicate; this means that professional language skills may have a positive effect on the grade, whereas poor language skills may have a negative effect on the grade.

The oral examination begins with a presentation by the student of significant points and challenges, followed by a discussion of the theory behind the Master's Thesis, empirical material used, method and analysis with a view to development of arguments, additional reflection and a possible future perspective on the implications of the Master's Thesis.

The grade will carry a quadouble weight in the calculation of the grade point average.

Course content and structure

The thesis block comprises the preparation of a written thesis (the Master’s Thesis), which serves as a test of the student’s ability to engage in in-depth study and independently describe, analyse and process a complex issue at Master’s level.

The thesis may be written individually or in a group of two (2) students (double thesis).
The topic for the thesis is chosen by the student(s), in collaboration with one or more educators who will function as supervisor(s), from within one or several of the academic areas that the student has been working with in the programme. 

The problem formulation must be approved ahead of the supervision period.
At the time of approval, a deadline for submission of the thesis is also determined together with a plan for supervision.  We refer to the Guidelines for Hand-in Deadlines for Master's Theses at CBS (Retningslinjer for afleveringsfrister for kandidatafhandlinger på CBS): http://frontpage.cbs.dk/sar/docs?id=475

The Master’s Thesis should be max. 80 standard pages if written by one student, and max. 120 standard pages if written by two students, and should include an executive summary of max. 2 pages.

Teaching methods
While working on the Master’s Thesis, students are entitled to receive a pre-determined amount of guidance from their supervisor. Students who choose to write an individual thesis are entitled to 21 hours of supervision whereas students who write together with another student will be given a total of 32 hours of supervision.
Last updated on 10-07-2014