Resources for Current Students
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Thesis and Project Options
To earn the 36 credits needed for the Master's degree, matriculated students in Community Social Psychology have the option, in consultation with a faculty member of completing either a thesis or a project. Note that neither the thesis nor project are required nor are they guaranteed options. Both of these requirements entail developing an integrative piece of scholarship. The thesis is larger in scope, more formal, and more rigorous than the project, and it must involve empirical research.
Specifically the thesis will:
- Be completed over the course of two semesters (usually consecutive), counting for six credits toward the degree
- Involve a Thesis Committee of three faculty
- Be written in accordance with University guidelines
- Be defended by the student in front of the Thesis Committee at a public meeting
The thesis is a piece of quantitative and/or qualitative research, involving a review of literature, the clear statement of a research question, the design of an appropriate method for collecting data, and the analysis of results as the basis for drawing conclusions.
Specifically the project will:
- Typically be completed over the course of one academic semester, counting for three credits toward the degree
- Be carried out under the supervision of one faculty member
- Be written in accordance with guidelines established by the graduate program
- May involve an appropriate form of public presentation
The project may also be a piece of research, though narrower in scope and more focused than a thesis (e.g., a pilot study or a program evaluation). It may also involve the development, implementation and evaluation of an action-oriented intervention.
Completion of a thesis is not appropriate for all students, but might be a good choice for students interested in enhancing their research skills, and it might also benefit those who are thinking of going on to a doctoral program and a possible career in university teaching and research. Again a thesis is not a guaranteed option for all students.
A project might be a good choice for students interested in enhancing their program design, intervention and evaluation skills, and it might also benefit those students pursuing careers in human services and community development.
CSP students are highly encouraged to discuss the thesis or project option with their assigned CSP faculty advisors.
Guidebook and Forms
Applying to Doctoral Programs in Psychology
Community Psychology Resources
The following Internet links are additional resources relating to community psychology research and practice.