An honours thesis is an undergraduate student’s first significant piece of independent scholarly research. The student is responsible for seeing this entire research process through from start to finish with guidance from the Thesis Supervisor (TS). The honours thesis articulates a research question and/or a hypothesis and describes why it is important to answer the question or test the hypothesis. It outlines the methods to be used to measure concepts and how the data will be collected to answer the research question posed. The thesis may involve collection of original data, reanalysis of secondary data, or library research to provide new insights about a problem.
Both empirical and conceptual/theoretical projects require extended research designed to satisfy students’ intellectual curiosity, develop their research, argumentation, and writing skills, and advance knowledge in a specific academic area of study. Although length varies, an undergraduate honours thesis in the Political Science program shall meet the following criteria in order to fulfil the requirements:
“A manuscript that is thoroughly researched, well-written, consistently and carefully formatted, which shows sufficient evidence of synthesis, integration, and originality in the analysis. The thesis should also point to future research and, possibly, lay out a research agenda that the student may wish to pursue further in graduate school.”
In addition, students are required to present their completed project as a poster in the Honours Thesis Showcase.