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Thesis Proposal and Defence

Thesis Proposal

The student’s Supervisory Committee must approve his/her thesis proposal prior to submission of Research Ethics Board (REB) application(s) and commencement of data collection. Students should propose their thesis by the end of their first year in the program.

The thesis proposal must conform to appropriate formatting guidelines for the student’s discipline (e.g., APA, Chicago, NLM) and should include the following sections: introduction, literature review, methods, and data analysis.

Once the thesis Supervisor(s) are satisfied that the student will be prepared to propose, the Supervisor(s) should inform the Graduate Chair and Academic Assistant for Graduate Studies of potential dates for the proposal meeting. The Supervisor(s) will coordinate the scheduling of the proposal meeting and book an appropriate room and technology.

At least two weeks prior to the proposal meeting, the student should submit a copy of his/her proposal to all members of the Supervisory Committee as well as to the School of Graduate Studies. The format of the proposal submission (i.e., electronic or hard copy) is at the discretion of the Supervisory Committee. When hard copies are requested, students are responsible for the cost of printing copies of the proposal.

At the conclusion of the proposal meeting, the Supervisory Committee will complete and sign the MSc Kinesiology Proposal Approval Form. This form will be submitted to the School of Graduate Studies for retention in the student’s file.




Thesis Defence

The student’s Thesis Examination Committee shall consist of all members of the student’s Supervisory Committee as well as an additional Examiner. The additional Examiner may be external to the department or to the University. The additional Examiner must be approved by the Graduate Coordinator and the School of Graduate Studies.

At least five weeks prior to the anticipated defence date, the Supervisor(s) will provide the Graduate Coordinator with the names of two to three potential External Examiners. In consultation with the supervisor(s), the Graduate Chair will select and contact the External Examiner.

At least five weeks prior to the anticipated defence date, the student must submit a copy of the thesis to the Supervisory Committee and notify the Academic Assistant for Graduate Studies of the submission. The thesis must conform to appropriate formatting guidelines for the student’s discipline (e.g., APA, Chicago, NLM) and can be written in either chapter or article format. The thesis should contain a copy of all Research Ethics Board approvals in the Appendix.

Within two weeks of receiving the thesis, the Supervisory Committee members will submit their decision on whether the thesis is ready to proceed to defence to Graduate Studies. Once all Supervisory Committee members have indicated that the thesis can go forward, the Academic Assistant for Graduate Studies will contact the External Examiner to coordinate a final date for the thesis defence. The Academic Assistant for Graduate Studies will also book an appropriate location and technology for the defence.

At least three weeks prior to the defence date, the student must submit a final copy of the thesis to the School of Graduate Studies in the format desired by the Thesis Examination Committee. If the Committee requests a hard copy, the student is responsible for providing sufficient copies for all members of the Supervisory Committee, one copy for the School of Graduate Studies, and one copy for the External Examiner. The Academic Assistant for Graduate Studies will ensure that the External Examiner receives the thesis.

One week prior to the defence date, the External Examiner will submit his/her report indicating whether or not the thesis can proceed to defence. The results of the report will be shared with the Supervisor(s). Upon receipt of the report indicating that the defence can proceed, the Academic Assistant for Graduate Studies will notify the department of the upcoming defence via email.

The Graduate Coordinator and Academic Assistant for Graduate Studies will arrange for a faculty member who is not on the Thesis Examination Committee to chair the defence (i.e., the thesis defence chair). The thesis defence Chair is responsible for moderating the defence, including all question and discussion periods. Approximately one week prior to the defence, the thesis defence Chair will receive a copy of the thesis, as well as a copy of all relevant policies for conducting a thesis defence. On the day of the defence, the thesis defence Chair will receive a copy of all required defence forms from the Academic Assistant for Graduate Studies.

All defences will be open. Individuals invited to observe the defence presentation are not permitted to ask questions of the student until the final defence decision has been announced.

The defence will be no longer than three hours in duration. The student will provide a 20-minute presentation of his/her research. This will be followed by a question period. Each Thesis Examination Committee member shall have 10 minutes to ask questions of the student in each round of questioning. The Committee may ask up to three rounds of questions. The student may then make a brief final statement (i.e., one to two minutes). The student and any observers will then leave the room and the Committee will discuss the results of the defence in camera. The Chair will note the decision of the Committee and any recommendations. All members of the Thesis Defence Committee, as well as the Chair, must sign the Thesis Defence form. The Supervisor(s) will not sign off until the student has submitted the final version of the thesis to the School of Graduate Studies, including any requested changes. If other Thesis Examination Committee members wish to review the final document, they may also withhold their signatures. The student will then be invited back into the room and informed of the result. At this point, observers may ask questions regarding the student’s research.

The student must make all required changes to the thesis and include a copy of the Research Ethics Final Report as well as a copy of his/her CV in the final document. The final thesis must be approved by the Supervisor(s) and meet any additional conditions determined at the defence. The Supervisor(s) will sign the Thesis Defence form.

Once the final thesis has been approved, the student must submit a final version of the document to the School of Graduate Studies. This should occur within one month of the defence, unless otherwise specified at the defence. Students are responsible for providing bound copies of the thesis, as well as an electronic copy to the School of Graduate Studies. Please refer to the School of Graduate Studies’ guidelines regarding thesis binding. Students are responsible for the cost of printing and binding the thesis.

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