Master's Thesis at SUM

Supervision of masters thesis

As a general rule, the scope of the advisory relationship should encompass from 10 – 15 meetings, beginning with the initial meeting in the student’s second semester and ending with the thesis defence. Experience shows that meetings between advisor and student are more effective when both agree beforehand on the subject of the meeting and the issues/questions to be discussed. In the final writing phase, the subject will usually be drafts of sections of the thesis, which should be submitted to the advisor in advance of Meetings.

Here is an overview over Supervisors at SUM.

Ethical implications in research

If your fieldwork materials are subject to a concession (i.e., contain personally identifiable data or sensitive information), you must also supply a copy of your agreement with the Norwegian Social Sciences Data Services (NSD).

If you, through interviews, questionnaires, observations or other means, are gathering, registering, processing or storing information about individuals (i.e. personal data), then your project is likely to be subject to Notification to Norwegian Social Science Data Services (NSD). This means that you are obligated to fill out a notification form (meldeskjema) and submit it to the Data Protection Official for Research. Even if the final report contains no personal data, the project may still be subject to notification if you process personal data while working on the project. Submitt as soon as possible prior to your field work.

Take the Notification Test here

If your research handles sensitive information, you may need to follow special regulations. If you believe your research may have ethical implications, ask your advisor for help to understand the regulations and to fill out the necessary forms for restricting the Master's thesis. Restriction of the master's thesis usually means blocking access to both the digital and printed version of the thesis.

Fieldwork and financial support

All students should fill in a declaration of personal information for students doing fieldwork abroad. This is due to security precautions so that UiO will be able to assist you in case of emergency.

Declaration regarding fieldwork abroad (CES)

Masters students can apply for up to 3500,- NOK in financial support from SUM to cover expenses related to fieldwork or to participate in seminars, conferences etc that are of direct relevance to the thesis. Travel grants for students are remunerated as a travel expenses claim  (will be updated November 2018)

Norwegian studens may also apply for financial support from Lånekassen. You apply online through "Mine sider", but should attache the "D-skjema" which is available on Lånekassens website

IT Services

Save, save, save! Always save and take backups of your files and recordings. We recommend downloading Office 365 and to save your files or backups on OneDrive.

NVivo is a software that allows you to code text, sound, images and video. NVivo can also be used for transcribing.

EndNote is a reference tool most students find useful. The Library organize courses, there are online tutorials and a EndNote Facebook Group.

Writing the thesis

All thesis must be delivered in a set format and lay-out. When you write your thesis you can save valuable time if you structure it by using the guidelines and the Thesis templates provided by UiO from the beginning. Number of pages: 90-130, excluding front page, index, appendix and bibliography. Do read the full instructions for the thesis template.

WARNING: You should not move between different versions of Word. If you have started working in Word 2010, you should not open and save the document in Word 2007, and vice versa If you do this, the document could be damaged or destroyed.

Reading room

The reading room on SUM's 4th floor is reserved CES students. Read more about the reading room and apply for a work desk on the SUM reading room website.

Printing and submitting the thesis

The deadline to be guaranteed an oral examination within the same semester is 15 May/1 November. Please note the following:

- If you submit your thesis *15 May/15 November*, you are guaranteed an oral defense date within the current semester.

- If you submit your thesis *1 June*, we will do our utmost to arrange your oral defense as soon as possible, but we can’t guarantee that it will be within the spring semester.

- If you are not able to submit your thesis *within 1 June/15 November*, you must apply for an extra semester. The deadline to apply for an extra semester is 1 June/December. The application must include a work schedule for completion of the master's thesis approved and signed by your supervisor. Further information and application form is available here. NB! For international students, specific conditions may apply.

Please note that your admission to the master's programme will be revoked if you do not submit your thesis according to the rules and regulations cited above.

These are the steps to follow when submitting the thesis:

Check To do
  • Make sure that you have followed the guidelines of the UiO master thesis template
  • Make sure that you have centered the UiO-logo on the front page in the template (in the previous template it was a bit off-centre, to the right)
  • Check that your table of contents is updated
  • Check that you’re not missing any references in your list of references
  • Save the finished thesis as a PDF file (How to make a pdf. file).
  • Print out the thesis in PDF and revise that everything looks fine.
  • Write a summary of the thesis (maximum 1 page), and prepare a few keywords that describes it.

The keywords will be searchable in DUO (the digital archive of UiO) when the thesis is published, and will make it easier for those interested to find your thesis. For inspiration, check out previous master's thesis from SUM.


Order prints of your master's thesis on Reprosentralen's website

Information you need for ordering the prints:

  • Percentage of color pages: 10 / total pages in your thesis x 100 = x %

  • Duplex print (Norwegian: Tosidig)

  • Color on coversheet:

  • Sadel- and back color:

  • Cover sheet print

  • Sted/Location code: 290 100

  • Prosjektkode: 000 000

  • Tiltakskode/budget code: 600 027

  • Copies: 10

  • Color pages: max. 10

  • Free text: "The thesis should be printed with SUM's own cover that is uploaded in a separate odf. file


SUM covers the cost of 10 copies. Any additional copies and more than 10 colour pages are at your own expense. Please collect the copies at Reprosentralen as soon as they are ready, and give 4 of them to SUM (for the supervisor, examiners and a display copy).

  • Fill in the Form for submission of Master´s Thesis. Leave the field "Programme option" open.
  • Submit the printed thesis and "Form of submission" within 15 May/November to the student coordiantor at SUM. Without the form, we are not able to issue the diploma.
  • If you are not in Oslo, send it to:

    Anne-Line Sandåker

    P.O. Box 1116


    0317 OSLO


Oral exam

When the thesis is submitted, a Commission will be appointed to examine the thesis. The student will be informed by email of the date for the exam and the make-up of the Commission. The Commission will consist of one in-house and one external examiner. The Commission may ask the supervisor beforehand whether she or he wishes to provide the Commission any information on the candidate or the research, but the supervisor does not participate in the exam.

The oral exam will take place at SUM. At the agreed upon time for the exam, the two examiners meet briefly to discuss the written thesis. The quality is assessed and the examiners agree on a provisional grade. After the committee’s initial discussion, the candidate is called in and examined. The student should be prepared to answer questions about the thesis content and preparation. The exam will normally take 45-60 minutes. The examination is conducted in English. The quality of the candidate’s performance in the exam contributes to the final grade for the thesis.

After the exam is completed, the Commission will determine a grade for the thesis, which will be given to the student at the end of the session. You will also receive a written explanation of the grade which has been awarded. You should familiarize yourself with UiO grading system's general, qualitative descriptions of the criteria used in the assessment of examinations.

You can appeal against your grade or any formal errors relating to the examination. Please see the information website on explanations and appeals.

The final Masters Diploma will be sent to the address the student has registered in StudentWeb.

Published Sep. 26, 2011 11:18 AM - Last modified Nov. 16, 2018 11:30 AM