Master’s Thesis Policy

Minimum Qualifications

  • The thesis option is not a requirement for graduation.
  • Student must have a minimum 3.7 GPA in the degree program (A- average) to complete a Master’s thesis.


  • The Master’s thesis is to be aimed at an original contribution to the field that furthers the understanding of the subject matter.
  • The Master’s thesis is to be completed under the supervision of a full-time faculty member of BU with a terminal degree, and vetted by a committee of academics and experts in the field.
  • It is recommended that the first reader also has a terminal degree in the field.


  • Student must receive department and dean’s approval (Master’s Thesis Proposal Form)
  • The Master’s Thesis Proposal Form should be submitted complete to the department, with all additional pages attached, before beginning the thesis. The completed packet includes:
    • Statement of Purpose/Problem and Research Plan (1-2 pages minimum)
    • Research and Writing Timeline
    • Bibliography (this may change as the student progresses with the project)
    • Declaration of Research Ethics and Research Protocols – If a proposal includes work with human subjects, the proposal will fall under the purview of the BU Institutional Review Board, and IRB approval will be required prior to research. The Proposal Form must indicate that approval will be sought.
  • Declaration or assessment of research funds needed associated with the thesis (e.g. if funding is needed, does or can the student secure it?)
  • The student must register for both 4-credit thesis courses, either in one semester or over the course of two or more semesters. A total of 8 credits must be taken to complete the Master’s thesis.
  • Upon completion of the written portion of the thesis, the student must defend his/her work before the faculty adviser and committee. (Defense Authorization Form)

Library Publication

  • Approved theses by the adviser, committee, and Associate Dean can be submitted to the Mugar Library for publication. Theses must meet strict formatting guidelines and submit the library’s “Thesis and Dissertation Approval” form. See the Library Guide for Writers of Theses for details on formatting the thesis for electronic submission using ProQuest to the library. A separate Mugar Library Thesis Approval Checklist must be completed in conjunction with the Mugar Library Theses/Dissertations Coordinator and the Office of the Dean at MET.
  • Important: We advise students to meet with the Mugar Library Theses/Dissertations Coordinator before they defend in order to ensure that they have the proper formatting for the signature page. Failure to secure all three readers signatures in ink on an original signature page with the correct margins can result in having to collect all readers signatures again on a new page.

BU Library Thesis Submissions Guidelines

Library Guide for Writers of Theses

Sample Pages for Library Publications