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49078-01 - Kurs: Research Design Master’s Thesis 3 KP

Semester Herbstsemester 2023
Angebotsmuster Jedes Semester
Dozierende Patricia Holm (patricia.holm@unibas.ch)
Frank Christian Krysiak (frank.krysiak@unibas.ch, BeurteilerIn)
Iljana Schubert (iljana.schubert@unibas.ch)
Inhalt Writing a master's thesis related to a topic of sustainability is the masterpiece of the MSD study program. Students are expected to use productively their acquired knowledge (in terms of methods and sustainability related content) for analyzing a specific topic. However, developing a research design that copes with scientific scrutiny and accuracy is by far not an easy endeavour. Questions like ‘How can I find an interesting topic?’ or ‘According to which criteria should I decide to go for a specific method?’ or - and most important – ‘Why and how do I have to link my research design to the ongoing scientific discourse?’ are waiting to be answered.
This course is thought to support the students in developing their research proposal in a structured, systematic and scientific manner. Students get familiar with necessary elements of a master thesis: problem framing, introduction, background, aims, hypothesis, research questions, methods, results, discussion, reflection/contribution to the scientific debate etc. Students also learn how they can identify a valuable research topic in the field of sustainable development. Some elements are thereby generic, i.e. independent of a specific disciplinary perspective. Other elements are, to the contrary, highly dependent on the chosen disciplinary field. Other elements are concerned with capturing intersections between the field.

Against this backdrop, the class will be jointly given by the three teachers at the beginning, when it comes to unfold the generic components. Subsequently the class will be split into three groups and the students will develop their research proposal along the specific requirements according to their own focus areas.
Lernziele The students
- know how to prepare a research proposal for their master's thesis in a structured, systematic and scientific manner;
- know how to identify a valuable research topic in the field of sustainable development, to develop a related research question directed to a contribution to the scientific debate as well as designing a research approach (e.g. choice of methods) directed to answering the research question;
- are able to characterize intersections between their approach and other disciplines as well as intersections with non-academic fields (such as politics, business etc.);
- are familiar with formal requirements for a master's thesis (correct citation, presentation of graphs, figures, results, plagiarism etc.).
Bemerkungen Mandatory course for all students of MSD 2017 ("Preparation Master's Thesis" module).
Students with focus area in natural science have to list this course in the learning agreement for the "Preparation Master's Thesis" module (template available on the website MSD/downloads MSD 2017). For details see guidelines and medium-term syllabus.

Plenary meetings for all participants on Mondays, 08:15 to 10:00 am on the following dates:
1: 18.09.23; 2: 02.10.23; 3: 30.10.23; 4: 13.11.23.

Meetings in between in groups according to the announcements of responsible teaching member.

This course is offered by the MSD: Prof. Dr. Patricia Holm and Frank Krysiak (lead) are members of the MSD teaching committee. Iljana Schubert is team member of the sustainability research group and holds a teaching assignment.


Teilnahmebedingungen Exclusively for MSD-students. Students of IJDSD may attend the course according to the agreement with MSD responsible contact person. No other students admitted.

Anmeldung zur Lehrveranstaltung Course enrollment on MOnA should be completed by the beginning of the teaching period (withdrawal possible until Monday of teaching week five).

Unterrichtssprache Englisch
Einsatz digitaler Medien kein spezifischer Einsatz


Intervall Wochentag Zeit Raum
unregelmässig Siehe Einzeltermine
Bemerkungen For details on teaching dates see section "comments".


Datum Zeit Raum
Montag 18.09.2023 08.15-10.00 Uhr Vesalianum, Seminarraum (O2.02)
Montag 02.10.2023 08.15-10.00 Uhr Vesalianum, Seminarraum (O2.02)
Montag 30.10.2023 08.15-10.00 Uhr Vesalianum, Seminarraum (O2.02)
Montag 13.11.2023 08.15-10.00 Uhr Vesalianum, Seminarraum (O2.02)
Module Modul: Vorbereitung Masterarbeit Gesellschaftswissenschaften (Masterstudium: Sustainable Development)
Modul: Vorbereitung Masterarbeit Wirtschaftswissenschaften (Masterstudium: Sustainable Development)
Leistungsüberprüfung Lehrveranst.-begleitend
Hinweise zur Leistungsüberprüfung Compulsory attendance in presence, required readings, presentation. Outline of master's thesis’ research design according to information of lecturers.
An-/Abmeldung zur Leistungsüberprüfung Anm.: Belegen Lehrveranstaltung; Abm.: stornieren
Wiederholungsprüfung keine Wiederholungsprüfung
Skala 1-6 0,1
Wiederholtes Belegen beliebig wiederholbar
Zuständige Fakultät Universität Basel
Anbietende Organisationseinheit Departement Umweltwissenschaften