Questions and Answers regarding final theses

Here you can find a compilation of frequently asked questions regarding the final thesis.

 

Time Schedule

Question: What is the overall time schedule of a final thesis?

Answer: This depends on the specific examination regulations of your study course. Please always check which conditions apply to you!

In general, the following procedure holds:

1. First, with your idea for a topic on hand, you will need to go to a lecturer from the faculty of textile and clothing technology, whom you would like to supervise your thesis, and ask whether:

  • the topic is suitable for a final thesis
  • the lecturer is willing to supervise the work
  • Of course, even if you don’t have a specific idea on a topic, you can ask a lecturer if he/she has a topic to assign
     

2. If step 1 went well and topic and supervision are basically fixed, you should register for the workshop final thesis. For this, you can use the form on our website.

3. If you would like to officially register for the final thesis, you can get the corresponding application form at the examinations office. In the form you should enter your own data, as well as the names of the supervisor and the co-supervisor. After that, you have to ask your co-supervisor to confirm his/her willingness to oversee your thesis by their signature and submit the application form to your supervisor.

4. Your supervisor will fill the application form with additional data, in particular the topic of the thesis. He/She will then forward the application to the chair of the examinations board (CEB).

5. The CEB will check your application. If it meets the requirements, the CEB will sign it, determine first and second examiner and pass it on to the examinations office.

6. The examinations office will then inform you in writing about your topic and the deadline for the submission of the thesis. This is calculated according to the day on which the application is submitted (not the day you handed the application to your supervisor). The maximum processing time is stipulated in the examination regulations. The current regulations state a processing time of:

  • 3 months for Bachelor theses
  • 4 months for master theses
     

7. You may withdraw from the topic within 4 weeks after the official start date, without giving reasons. However, this is possible only once.

8. Within the time limit set for the thesis, you should submit the latter in triplicate to the examinations office. A minimum time to work on the thesis is not prescribed in the current examination regulations.

9. The examinations office will pass on the corresponding copies of your work to the supervisor and the co-supervisor. These will examine the written part of your final thesis. If you passed this, you will be invited to the colloquium, which shall take place within three months after the delivery of the thesis. The invitation to the colloquium will be sent in writing.

10. The colloquium will be held between you, the first examiner and the second examiner. Immediately following the colloquium of about 45 minutes and held in the form of an oral examination, you will be informed about your grade for the written and the oral part of your final thesis. The corresponding forms will be filled out and forwarded to the CEB by the supervisor.

11. The CEB will pass the documents to the examinations office.

12. After a period, which should not exceed four weeks, you will receive your degree certificate and record, upon presentation of the filled-out "tracking sheet" at the examinations office. If desired, the documents can also be send by post.

Submission Deadline

Question: Can I extend the submission deadline for the thesis? What if I get ill during the allotted time for the final thesis?

Answer: First of all, please note that the allowed processing time for the final thesis only starts to elapse after the examinations office has processed the official application.

In case of an empirical, experimental or mathematical topic, the deadline can be extended by a maximum of one month.

An extension of a maximum one month is also possible once if a delay occurs, which is not caused by the student. This could be for example the late delivery of a machine important for measurements, technical difficulties with a device, production problems of a company or the like. For the extension of the period, an application has to be submitted to the examinations office. This must be approved by the supervisor and authorized by the chair of the examinations board.

In the event of an illness, the submission deadline is postponed, if a medical certificate proves that it was not possible to work on the thesis during the illness. The request for extension of the period has to be submitted together with the medical certificate to the examinations office. The chairman of the examinations board decides upon the approval.

Grading

Question: who determines the grade of the final thesis and how does it affect my total grade?

Answer: The first and the second examiner together determine the mark for the final thesis and the colloquium. Their evaluation is independent of one another, but in practice both agree on a grade.

If the grades from first and second examiner differ, the arithmetic mean is formed. If the difference between the two grades is 2.0 or more, the chair of the examinations board appoints a third examiner. He/She also evaluates the work independently. The two best grades are then used to calculate the mean. However, the thesis can only be considered "passed" if at least two of the three grades are 4.0 or higher.

The grades for the written thesis and the colloquium are weighted differently for the total grade, depending on the examination regulations and the Bachelor's or Master's degree programme. If necessary, please consult your current examination regulations. For the current weighting holds:

  • Bachelor PO 2010/2012: Thesis 15%, colloquiums 5% and the average of all subject examinations 80%
  • Master PO 2010: Thesis 25%, colloquiums 5% and the average of all subject examinations 70%
  • Bachelor PO 2017: Thesis 20%, colloquiums 5% and the average of all subject examinations 75%
  • Master PO 2017: Thesis 30%, colloquiums 5% and the average of all subject examinations 65%

Registration for the Final Thesis

Question: Can I register for the final thesis if I still have outstanding exams? Is this limited to a maximum of one pending examination? What if I have registered for the thesis, but fail one of the exams?

Answer: This, too, is determined in detail by the examination regulations.

For bachelor students the registration for the thesis is possible, if at least 175 credit points have been earned. How many outstanding examinations you have, does not matter as long as you have obtained the required number of credit points. Please bear in mind that also the credit points for the workshop scientific methods and for the workshop final thesis can be acquired before the registration.

If pending examinations are failed, the final thesis can be submitted (in time). However, the colloquium cannot be carried out. Usually, at least one additional study semester is necessary in this case. Nevertheless, the final thesis does not lose its validity.

Date Colloquium

Question: Can I demand to be invited to the colloquium immediately after submitting the thesis?

Answer: No! 
The first and second examiner have up to three months time to correct the thesis and hold the colloquium. In practice, however, this period is rarely used. If there are good reasons to shorten the period, usually a conversation with everyone involved can help. However, you should include a minimum time span of 14 days between the submission of the thesis and the colloquium in your planning.

Not Passing the Final Thesis

Question: Can I „fail“ the final thesis?
 

Answer: Yes of course!

The thesis is an exam. A thesis with a grade less than 4,0 is not passed (see also the regulations on determining the grade). In this case, the thesis can only be repeated once with a new, different topic.

Thesis in Collaboration with a Company

Question: Can I write the final thesis at a company? Can then be an employee of the company the co-supervisor?

Answer: Yes!

A lot of final theses are done in cooperation with companies. However, the topic has to be provided by a lecturer from the faculty. Possible contractual agreements with the companies (internship contract or similar) are independent from the examination process and must neither include the university nor the supervisors.

An employee of the company can also be appointed co-supervisor. The following preconditions must be fulfilled:

  • The supervisor is a professor at the faculty of Textile and Clothing Technology
  • The employee of the company holds an academic degree of at least the same level as the degree to be obtained by the student
  • The employee accepts the unpaid position as co-supervisor and the journey to come to Mönchengladbach for the colloquium
  • In case the employee is a graduate of the faculty of Textile and Clothing Technology, their degree must have been obtained at least three years ago

Topic Selection

Question: How do I find a topic for my thesis?

Answer: There are so many possibilities for this that this question cannot be answered conclusively here. The following options are commonly used:

  • You have an idea for a topic and propose this to a lecturer
  • You ask a lecturer if they have a topic to assign
  • You take a look at the faculty’s website 
  • Topics are offered on the notice boards of the lecturers
  • An interesting problem definition results from a contact with a company, for example through an internship semester
  • During the participation in (research) projects, possibilities for further research arise

Discontinuation / Change of Supervisor

Question: Can I cancel the thesis? Can I change the supervisor or the co-supervisor?

Answer: Yes and No!

You can withdraw from the topic of the final thesis within the first 4 weeks after registration without giving any reasons. However, this can be done only once.

The supervisor and co-supervisor have been assigned to you as examiners for the thesis. After 4 weeks, a change of supervisors must be authorized by the examinations board and is only permitted in very well-founded exceptional cases.

Language

Question: Is it allowed to write the thesis in a language other than "German" (for the German degree programmes)?

Answer: Yes!

However, this is only possible if student, supervisor and co-supervisor agree. In this case, a corresponding application is to be submitted to the chair of the examinations board.