PSYC E-496 Crafting the Thesis Proposal in Psychology
Spring term 2018 CRN 25107
This course is designed to refine students' research skills and critical thinking ability while they work to develop their own specific research proposal for the Master of Liberal Arts thesis in the field of psychology. The goal of the course is to produce a strong thesis proposal draft in community with fellow degree candidates. Class meetings are geared toward providing students with both the practical research skills (for example, use of library resources, proposal structure, and advanced writing skills) and scientific literacy skills (scientific approaches and controversies in the scientific literature) necessary to successfully draft a thesis proposal in the area of psychology. There is a heavy emphasis on creating a connection with classmates in order to create a supportive community of scholars that may continue to meet after the course is over. The crafting of a thesis proposal and a thesis project does not need to be done in isolation. Supportive writing groups are common in all research fields, enabling students to rely on knowledgeable peers to read and critique their work, particularly with respect to clarity, tone, and the use of evidence. Students should not register for this course unless they are ready to engage in the entire thesis process. They should consider if this is the right time to start independent research, as the goal of the course is to move from crafting the thesis proposal to thesis registration with no extended breaks. Students should begin the thesis project during the next semester or two after completing this course.