Recommendations for MA-supervision at IMK
The recommendations below apply to the IMK students and supervisors.
Please note that the information below applies mostly for the students admitted to the Norwegian-speaking MA programs and MA in Political Communication: Nordic perspectives. Students on MA Screen Cultures are following an alternative time frame.
The first meeting between supervisor and student should take place within four weeks after the student is notified about the appointment of the supervisor. It is the student who shall take the initiative for the first meeting. We recommend that the following is done during the first meeting:
- discuss the supervision contract and sign it
- discuss the recommended timeline for the Master's thesis and set your own milestones
- review the ethical guidelines for supervisors at UiO
- discuss the probability of getting a NSD clearance (see below)
- but first of all, discuss mutual expectations.
As a rule, your first meeting should result in a progress plan. The supervision contract should be signed by both supervisor and student, and submitted to the IMK Section of Studies.
The master’s students are entitled to a total of 18 hours supervision (for master's thesis with 60 ECTS, such as MEVIT4091 or MEVIT4991). These hours are spread over three semesters. Students admitted to the MA Screen Cultures are following an alternative time frame.
In order to make the supervision process more efficient, and to ensure the progression, the student should regularly submit new texts and / or texts which incorporate the supervisor's recommendations, to the supervisor, in the way they agree upon.
Meetings and minutes
We recommend that student and supervisor set their meeting dates well in advance. Student and supervisor should also agree on what and when the next text contribution should be sent to the supervisor. Unless agreed otherwise, the student is expected to write a short summary of each supervisory meeting and send it to supervisor after the meeting.
These summaries serve as documentation of the student’s progress and his/her understanding of the supervisor’s feedback, and can be really helpful to clear up misunderstandings and ambiguities.
Personal data and ethical guidelines
Both the supervisor and the student are responsible for ensuring that the master thesis project follows the research ethical guidelines at the University of Oslo, and is registered with the NSD if necessary. If the student’s master thesis involves collecting, handling or processing of personal data, it might be subject to a NSD project notification rules. Due to the long processing time at the NSD, it is recommended to contact the NSD as soon as possible.
- Check whether your project might need an NSD clearance
- Make yourself familiar with ethical guidelines for research
Student progression and delays
The supervision is normally offered during three semesters (second, third and fourth semester). The student is expected to work continuously with her/his thesis throughout the whole course of study.
The student must also inform the supervisor if she/he is applying for a leave and/or reduced study progression (part-time studies). The supervision contract normally ends after three semesters, unless the student has applied and been granted a leave of absence or study prolongation.
Students should keep in mind that the supervisor has other obligations, and are therefore asked to respect the progress plan for the supervision.
Research leave and travels
If the supervisor is planning a sabbatical or a long travel (more than one-two months), it is the supervisor's responsibility to inform the student about this well in advance. Unless agreed otherwise, the supervisor must ensure that the supervision is also offered during these periods of absence, for instance, via Skype.
Health issues and writer’s block
In case the student has long lasting health issues preventing him/her from working with the master’s thesis, the student must inform the supervisor, copy to the IMK section of studies. If the student experiences difficulties such as writer’s block, or have mental or social problems, the student must contact the SIO center for an appointment and counselling as soon as possible.
The supervisor is responsible for academic guidance only, and cannot assume responsibility for any facilitation beyond that. The student and the supervisor are welcome to consult the IMK Section of Studies in case more information is needed.
Change of supervisor
If the supervision does not work satisfactorily for the student or supervisor – due to academic or others causes - the student or supervisor must first try to discuss this with each other and come to an agreement.
If the supervision still does not work satisfactory, the student or supervisor must contact the IMK Section of Studies. The original supervision contract will then be terminated, and a new supervisor assigned.
Change of master thesis’s topic
If the student wishes to change the topic of the master’s thesis, the student must submit a new project description for approval to firstname.lastname@example.org. If there is no need for a new supervisor, and the project is approved, the supervision will continue as agreed.
If there is a need for a new supervisor, the Administrative Head of Studies will inform both the student and the former supervisor about this. A new appointment letter will be sent to the student and the new supervisor by e-mail.
If the student and the supervisor agree that there is a need for a co-supervision, they should send an e-mail to the section of studies and describe the reasons for the co-supervision, give suggestions for possible co-supervisors, as well as proposals for workload distribution between the supervisors.
The total number of supervision hours (18 hours) is divided between the main supervisor and co-supervisor. However, it is the main supervisor who has the main responsibility for the supervision and follow-up of the student's progression, including applications for extensions and the like.
Questions about the thesis
All administrative questions about the Master's thesis (deadlines, layout, extensions etc) should be directed to email@example.com.