BARN3900 - Master Thesis


Examination arrangement

Examination arrangement: Master's thesis and Oral examination
Grade: Letters

Evaluation form Weighting Duration Examination aids Grade deviation
Oral examination
Assignment 100/100

Course content

Students will select a topic for the master's thesis, which must be an autonomous, scientific study based on concrete research questions related to children and childhood. The thesis should be 55-85 pages (Verdana 10, space 1.15). Usually, the thesis must include an empirical study that involves fieldwork. It is strongly recommended that the data collection should be completed by the middle of the 3rd semester (medio October). The students are recommended to use the summer between the 2nd and 3rd semester for data collection. The thesis is expected to be completed within four semesters from admission into the programme. Supervision will not be provided beyond this time.

Learning outcome

- Develop in-depth knowledge of a self-selected topic related to childhood and/or children’s lives - Obtaining knowledge of the formal requirements and expectations of an academic text
- Training and experience in analyzing empirical fieldwork data, handling and structuring large amounts of information, and writing a scientific study related to children and childhood
- Training in developing the ability to make a connection between empirical material and conceptual/theoretical ideas
General competence:
- Can carry out comprehensive, ethical and independent empirical work
-Can handle and assess the quality of various forms of sources and information, and analyze as well as communicate research results in a clear and comprehensible manner.
Compulsory assignments:
- Submission and approval of project proposal, chapter drafts and supervision

Learning methods and activities

Master thesis seminar series have two parts. The first part takes place prior to undertaking fieldwork in the second semester. It focuses on research design, choice of topics and formulation of research questions. Students will also get advice on ethical clearance and how to be prepared to undertake good empirical research. These seminars are obligatory and considered key aspects of developing the ideas for the master’s thesis and preparing for fieldwork. All students will be given individual supervision amounting to a total of 60 hours. Students will get a supervisor assigned during the second semester. Following fieldwork (in the 3 semester and 4 semester) the master’s thesis seminars focus on how to work with theory and data. Students will share and discuss their field experiences, the process of analysing and interpreting field data as well as how to produce academic text. They also receive tips and guidance on writing master’s thesis. Students’ participation in master thesis seminars enables them to develop theoretical knowledge and practical skills related to the process of writing their research. Students are required to present and discuss their thesis as they write it. They are expected to hand in chapter drafts to their supervisor throughout the writing period. All students must sign a master's thesis agreement in the second semester. The agreement regulates, among other things, the relationship between student and supervisor.

Compulsory assignments

  • Submission of chapter drafts and supervision
  • Approved project description

Further on evaluation

The exam consists of two parts; the master's thesis and an oral defence of the thesis. The oral examination is a conversation about the thesis between the candidate and the examiners. The final grade for the master's thesis may be adjusted after the oral examination.

Specific conditions

Exam registration requires that class registration is approved in the same semester. Compulsory activities from previous semester may be approved by the department.

Admission to a programme of study is required:
Childhood Studies (MPCHILD)

Required previous knowledge

Students must have passed courses that is equivalent of 30 credits in the study programme before starting the work on their master’s thesis. The courses include BARN3101 Social Studies of Children and Childhood, BARN3201 Methods and Ethics in Childhood Studies, and BARN3202 Methodological Perspectives on Child and Childhood Research..

Course materials

Information will be given at the beginning of the semester.

More on the course



Version: 1
Credits:  60.0 SP
Study level: Second degree level


Term no.: 1
Teaching semester:  AUTUMN 2020

Term no.: 2
Teaching semester:  SPRING 2021

Language of instruction: English

Location: Trondheim

Subject area(s)
  • Childhood Studies
  • Social Sciences
Contact information
Course coordinator: Lecturer(s):

Department with academic responsibility
Department of Education and Lifelong Learning



Examination arrangement: Master's thesis and Oral examination

Term Status code Evaluation form Weighting Examination aids Date Time Digital exam Room *
Autumn ORD Oral examination
Room Building Number of candidates
Spring ORD Oral examination
Room Building Number of candidates
Autumn ORD Assignment 100/100 INSPERA
Room Building Number of candidates
Spring ORD Assignment 100/100 INSPERA
Room Building Number of candidates
  • * The location (room) for a written examination is published 3 days before examination date. If more than one room is listed, you will find your room at Studentweb.

For more information regarding registration for examination and examination procedures, see "Innsida - Exams"

More on examinations at NTNU