Religious Minorities Master's Thesis
Level of Study
Autumn and Spring
Place of Instruction
Online course, and therefore not restricted to Bergen.
Objectives and Content
The master project shall be an independent project that demonstrates understanding, reflection, and critical thought. In addition, the master project will show:
- That the student can locate and process source material
- That the student is well-familiar with relevant theory and method
- That the student has mastered searching, reviewing, and the proper use of academic literature
The topic of the master project course shall be determined during RELV 339 (Research Methods, Ethics, and Project Design). In order to receive proper guidance, the student needs to choose a topic of which there is available competence among the faculty of the department of Archaeology, History, Cultural Studies, and Religion.
Work on the master¿s project is scheduled for one semester for full-time students, and two semesters for part-time students.
The student shall by the end of the course have gained the following learning outcome defined in knowledge, skills, and general competence:
- can select and apply core concepts and theoretical approaches from the field of religious studies to original research
- can describe and classify central ethical issues relevant to the relationship between religious minorities and their social surroundings and to social dynamics within religious minorities
- can find relevant research sources about religious minorities
- can select and apply appropriate research methods to researching religious minorities
- can design and carry out a written research project on a topic related to religious minorities in accordance with the ethical and professional standards of the academic community
- can detect and challenge hidden and overt ideologies and stereotypes
- can select and apply appropriate theoretical approaches and research methodologies to research
- can utilize the appropriate academic language and writing skills to communicate descriptions and analyses of complex social, political, and religious issues
- can approach research from several critical perspectives
Required Previous Knowledge
Completion of the program¿s compulsory courses.
Recommended Previous Knowledge
The thesis is to be written in English or in a Scandinavian language. Students should therefore have a sound knowledge of the language in which they write.
Credit Reduction due to Course Overlap
Access to the Course
Admission to the Master¿s Programme Religious Minorities
Teaching and learning methods
The teaching and student activities in this course will entirely take place online.
Each semester two master seminars are held. In the first each student enrolled in the course submits a 10-minute digital presentation of his/her work, and the second, in which each student enrolled in the course submits a draft of a dissertation chapter, which is commented on by other students.
Compulsory Assignments and Attendance
In this course the following compulsory requirements have to be approved in order to sit for the examination:
The students will revise a project outline for the master¿s thesis prepared in RELV309. The project outline will show that the student  has good knowledge of the research history of the topic and can place the project within this research history,  has clearly defined and limited the scope of the project and material used for it and  has a realistic implementation plan. Project sketch, approx. 2000-3000 words, is rated as "approved", "approved with reservation" or "not approved". The project sketch should be submitted latest in the second semester of the program by full time students, and the fourth semester by part-time students.
For the first master seminar, each student needs to submit a 10-minute digital presentation of his/her work. For the second seminar, each student must submit a draft of a dissertation chapter, which is commented on by other students.
Forms of Assessment
Forms of assessment:
- The master¿s thesis needs to have a length between 15,000 and 20,000 words. This does not include front page, table of contents, foreword, bibliographical lists and appendices.
- An oral exam.
The master¿s dissertation receives a grade, after which an oral exam is done based on the thesis. This oral exam can adjust the grade of the thesis up or down.
Both parts of the assessment must be passed in order to pass the examination.
A graded marking scale (A to F) is used. A is the top grade and F means Failed.
This course has an individualized reading list.
The course unit will be evaluated regularly.