PH3900 - Thesis in Global Health


Examination arrangement

Examination arrangement: Assignment/thesis
Grade: Letter grades

Evaluation Weighting Duration Grade deviation Examination aids
Assignment/thesis 100/100

Course content

The purpose of the master’s thesis is to provide the student with the ability to conduct an independent, scientifically structured, and delimited research project under supervision and in line with applicable norms of research ethics.

The student must choose a topic and research problem for the master’s thesis that are relevant to the subject area (global health). It can be helpful for students to link the research to active research groups or projects within the university or university hospital. The topic and the research problem are developed in consultation with the thesis supervisor(s).

The student should demonstrate a scientific, problem-oriented approach to all the phases of the scientific work process. This includes formulating a research question, project description/protocol, searching relevant scientific literature, structuring work processes, collecting data (if relevant), carrying out data analyses, and presentation and critical assessment of the completed work.

The final master’s thesis must be structured systematically; for example, according to the Introduction, Methods, Results, and Discussion (IMRaD) format. The traditional thesis format is a monograph with a maximum length of 25000 words (excluding title page, reference list, appendices).

More information is given in the guidelines for master's theses carried out at the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences.

Learning outcome

After completing the course PH3900 the student should be able to:

  • formulate a precise research problem
  • scientifically test and answer a research problem
  • prepare and analyze study data
  • present a research problem and discuss the results critically using relevant scientific literature
  • produce a clearly written report (master's thesis) in a scientific format

Learning methods and activities

The student is entitled to supervision in accordance with the size of the master’s thesis (e.g., 1 hour per credit, therefore 45 hours supervision on a thesis worth 45 ECTS credits).

The student must have a supervisor who is employed in an academic position at NTNU during the entire period of the master’s project. Supervisors employed at NTNU must have a PhD or senior lectureship competence, but exceptions to this can be made in consultation with the head of department. The NTNU supervisor is responsible for ensuring that the project and the supervision are in line with NTNU’s regulations.

The student may have several other supervisors, including from external environments and for whom there is no requirement regarding employment position.

A master's thesis supervision agreement, including a detailed project description with budget and timeline (maximum 10 pages), must be submitted by a given deadline in the second semester.

Assessment: The master’s thesis is evaluated on the written work and on an oral presentation/examination used to adjust the final grade of the thesis. The thesis must be written in English.

Further on evaluation

The master’s thesis will be assessed by two examiners, of which at least one should be external to NTNU. The examiners give a preliminary grade to the master’s thesis based on the written work prior to the oral exam in which the student and both examiners take part. The oral exam can be used to adjust the grade of the written work by one grade up or down.

The grading should be a joint decision in which the assessments of both examiners are included. In the event of a disagreement, the external examiner is given the greatest weight.

The final grade must be released immediately after the oral exam is held. The student is only made aware of the final grade, and the oral explanation of the final grade is the only explanation made available for the student.

When two students write a thesis together, they are agreeing that the written thesis is a common product reflecting cooperation on all levels; by extension they accept to receive the same grade on the written work. There will be an individual oral examination for each student.

If the supervisor(s) are present at the examination, they shall not participate in the oral exam.

If the written work is assessed to a grade F (not passed), an oral exam will not be held. In the event of a grade F (not passed), a new or revised thesis with significant changes may be submitted for assessment one more time. When the student has received a passing grade on the master's thesis, it is not possible to have a new thesis assessed within the same study program.

Specific conditions

Admission to a programme of study is required:
Global Health (MSPUHE) - some programmes

Required previous knowledge

The student must be admitted to the Master of Science in Global Health. In order to be eligible to defend his/her master's thesis, the student must have passed all exams and coursework worth 75 credits in total.

Credit reductions

Course code Reduction From To
PH3901 45.0 AUTUMN 2021
More on the course



Version: 1
Credits:  45.0 SP
Study level: Second degree level


Term no.: 1
Teaching semester:  AUTUMN 2023

Term no.: 2
Teaching semester:  SPRING 2024

Language of instruction: English

Location: Trondheim

Subject area(s)
  • Public Health
  • Medical Technology
  • Public Health
  • Globalisation
  • Medicine
Contact information
Course coordinator: Lecturer(s):

Department with academic responsibility
Department of Public Health and Nursing


Examination arrangement: Assignment/thesis

Term Status code Evaluation Weighting Examination aids Date Time Examination system Room *
Spring ORD Assignment/thesis 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"

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