If you are interested in writing a bachelor/master’s thesis in the lab, please read this page carefully and send an email to me (nagashima[at]cs.uni-saarland.de) with “Thesis Supervision” in its title and we can talk more! When emailing, please include your CV/Resume, transcript, and planned graduation month/date.
There are no strict prerequisites for writing a thesis in the lab, but to write a good thesis, it is important that you have a background (e.g., degree, coursework, past research project…) in one or more of the fields below:
- Learning Sciences/Education Science/Educational Technology
- Human-Computer Interaction/Computer Science
- Psychology/Cognitive Science
Also, please know that, once we decide to work on a thesis together in the lab, you’d need to take a bachelor/master seminar (graded) as part of your thesis writing. More info on the bachelor/master seminar is coming soon, but in general, you will meet with your supervisor to define a research question, identify prior work, and learn about its theoretical basis. After this phase, you will decide on the method you will use and make a clear plan on how to collect and analyze data. At the end of the seminar, you will give a short presentation in the lab on your work and plan and receive feedback. Once you complete the seminar, your “writing period” will start. Note that writing a thesis (seminar + the writing period) in my lab would require at minimum 6 months and more typically 8-9 months.
Types of Thesis
In my lab, students write a thesis of one (or more) of the following types:
- Design-focused (you’d engage in iterative design research with practitioners/community members to produce digital artifacts, which would be followed by user testing)
- Experiment-focused (you’d design some kind of instructional principle or activities using technology and conduct an experiment to test its effectiveness)
- Data analysis-focused (you’d analyze (existing) learning data and test hypotheses)
You can either propose your own topic for your thesis or choose a topic from our thesis topics (below). In either case, you would need to discuss this with Prof. Tomo Nagashima to reach a mutual agreement. Here are some open thesis topics for which we are currently looking for students:
- Promoting choices in using single/multiple representations during math learning (Preferred background: LS/Psych)
- Designing and testing social influences on choice making during learning (Preferred background: HCI/Psych)
- Investigating how emotions influence self-regulated learning behaviors in an Intelligent Tutoring System (Preferred background: HCI/LS)
- Effects of gamification on math learning, motivation, and emotions (Preferred background: CS/HCI)