Bachelor theses

Bachelor thesis in the industrial-organizational psychology

In the following, some information with regard to the supervision of bachelor theses within the field of industrial-organizational psychology can be found. It provides assistance that should alleviate the collaboration by way of clear regulations and agreements and, in particular, ensure that apart from the students writing excellent theses, they do the latter with as much fun as possible and less(er) stress. But of course: Writing a Bachelor thesis is usually accompanied by changing emotions (even towards the supervisor) - but this is part of it.

Subject

Own fields of interest from the field of industrial-organizational psychology as well as topics from the department´s thematic priorities are possible as topic of a Bachelor thesis (see also the list of topic suggestions). For clarifying the topic and the concrete issue one or two preliminary talks should take place with the supervisor. Moreover, the supervisors try to arrange for a common appointment with the students supervised.

Premises

A good result in the teaching sessions of the industrial-organizational psychology is required (at least 2.0).

Prior to the actual work, an exposé of approx. five pages with the following content shall be submitted:

  • Planned title of the thesis
  • Presentation of the problem or leading question
  • Ideas with regard to any theoretical approaches to be included
  • Ideas with regard to the empirical approach
  • Preliminary references
  • Planned structure
  • Rough time schedule

This exposé must usually be revised (if need be, even for several times).

Consultation

Any concrete questions about other chapters or the analysis procedure can be discussed during the consultation hours. It is frequently recommended to hand in the relevant questions or text passages well in advance by email.

A consultation by telephone or email is basically not possible.

Master theses

Master thesis

"The second part of the Master´s examination is the thesis. It is an examination paper that completes the scientific education. It shall show that the candidate is able to independently work on a problem within a fixed period of time using scientific methods and to appropriately present the results." (§20 (2) of the examination regulations; emphasis M.R.) The Master thesis should normally be an empirical work.

Subject

Any issue that can be worked on within the industrial-organizational psychology is deemed to be suitable as topic of the Master thesis. In principle, we assume that the student independently develops a topic which will then finally be fixed in consultation with us.

Premises

The supervision of a Master thesis within the field of industrial-organizational psychology requires following premises:

  • the student has completed a degree course with the major field of study in industrial-organizational psychology
  • A good result in the teaching sessions of the industrial-organizational psychology is required (at least 2.0).
  • Moreover, it is essential that basic psychological knowledge - and, in partiuclar, even methodological and statistical knowledge, data processing skills (e.g. SPSS) as well as principles of scientific work - have already been acquired prior to the beginning of the Master thesis.
  • Candidates should regularly attend the research colloquium offered by us and present the progress of their Master thesis there. In addition, this is an excellent opportunity to share the experiences of any other students and to make use of their comments for the own work.
  • The participation of the writing workshop (Textlab!), where courses are offered in academic writing, is recommended.
  • The students themselves have generally to care about the formal requirements for writing a Master thesis (e.g. deadlines, registration).

Duration

Pursuant to the examination regulations the Master thesis shall be completed within six months (in duly substantiated exceptional cases nine months).

Scope

With respect to the page count there is no clear criterion. At any rate, in our subject area, the scope of the thesis is no criterion for its quality. The following principles should apply:  "Brevity is the soul of wit" (however, please no brevity without wit) and "Economy of explanation".

Consultation

For clarifying the topic as well as the presentation of the problem and issue the student should have one or two preliminary talks with the supervisor. Any concrete questions with regard to the contents or the approach arising at a later point of time can be clarified during the consultation hours. It is frequently recommended to hand in the relevant questions or text passages well in advance by email.

A consultation by telephone or email is basically not possible.

For this preliminary talk or after the first appointment at the latest, a written exposé (=statement) of approx. five pages has to be submitted. This exposé must contain the presentation of the problem and the arising leading question, first ideas of any theoretical approaches to be included as well as the research design and methods and a time schedule at least differentiated by months. Please note that no further supervision is made without such exposé!

Prior to the actual work, an exposé of approx. five pages with the following content shall be submitted:

  • Planned title of the thesis
  • Presentation of the problem or leading question
  • Ideas with regard to any theoretical approaches to be included
  • Ideas with regard to the empirical approach
  • List of literature
  • Planned structure
  • Rough time schedule.

This exposé must usually be revised after these preliminary talks by specifying the issues mentioned in more detail. This paper finally forms the basis of the further supervision.

Every text and accordingly also the exposé should be submitted in hard copy and bear page numbers, a date and the student´s name.

Vor der empirischen Phase der Masterarbeit ist der theoretische Teil der Masterarbeit zu erstellen und (im Bachelor- und Masterkolloquium) zur Diskussion zu stellen.

Unverzichtbar ist, dass im Rahmen einer Masterarbeit aktuelle Literatur der einschlägigen Zeitschriften zur Kenntnis genommen und aufgearbeitet wird. Ebenso ist von Bedeutung, dass in anderen Texten zitierte Literatur dahingehend nachgeprüft werden muss, ob sie angemessen zitiert worden ist.

In any case, an empirical study should only be started if the supervisor has agreed with the approach as well as the methods and tools used.

Die Erfahrung zeigt, dass in der Regel für die empirische Phase zu wenig Zeit angesetzt wird, insbesondere für die Aufbereitung, Auswertung, Darstellung und Interpretation der Daten.

Die Rückmeldung von Untersuchungsergebnissen an die untersuchten Personen ist u.E. zwingend für arbeits- und organisationspsychologische Untersuchungen und damit auch für Masterarbeiten. Dies ist somit bei der Zeitplanung der Masterarbeit zu bedenken. Auch wenn diese Ergebnisrückmeldung häufig nicht Bestandteil des Textes ist, erfolgt eine Begutachtung und Bewertung der Arbeit erst, wenn die Ergebnisrückmeldung an die untersuchten Personen gesichert ist.

Grading

An excellent thesis involves that the requirements and conditions mentioned are complied with by the students.

For an excellent thesis it is not essential whether the hypotheses have been confirmed, but how well and transparently the topic has been penetrated and presented in writing, whether the hypotheses have plausibly been explained and how far the empirical study has properly been planned and carried out. This also includes that the statistical methods are used in an adequate manner. We do not necessarily expect any multivariate procedures, nevertheless, the procedures applied must be used in a correct way!

Moreover, for an excellent Master thesis it is not sufficient to only list any existing approaches and studies. It is essential that the latter are understood as well as presented and discussed in relation to the selected leading question.

Topic suggestions for Bachelor and Master theses

Topic suggestions for Bachelor and Master theses

In the following, some potential topics for Bachelor and Master theses within the industrial-organizational psychology are shown. They are deemed to be suggestions from the main research of the department. Any further topic suggestions are possible.

Work analysis

  • Methods of risk assessment
  • Usage of VERA (Method for determining regulatory requirements) / RHIA (Regulatory obstacles in work activities) / KABA (Contrastive job analysis in office and administration)
  • Methods of work analysis in companies
  • Work analysis at school and nursery schools
  • ...

Work and health

  • Stresses and strains at the workplace
  • Workplace health promotion
  • Industrial safety and health protection in companies
  • ...

Work & daily life; Gainful employment & family work

Usage of the AVAH method (work analysis in households), e.g. in connection with

  • Work without boundaries
  • Telework
  • Work-life-balance
  • Division of labor

 Usage of the AVAH extension for temporal coordination:

  • Evaluation of mother-child-cures
  • Women suffering from burnout
  •  BEM -  Occupational integration management and rehabilitation
  • ...

Group work and training of social skills

  • Group work in companies

Decision-making in groups

  • Intercultural trainings
  • Evaluation of trainings
  • ...

Gender & work

  • Country comparison between Denmark and Germany: Women and professional activity
  • Loss of qualification in the female biography
  • Workplace health promotion and gender mainstreaming
  • ...

Varia

  • Telecooperation
  • Psychological contract
  • Gratification crisis
  • Honorary office / Organizational Citizenship Behavior
  • Teacher / School
  • Work and culture