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Master’s Thesis Requirements and Forms
Deadlines and Reminders
Past MA Theses


Graduate School of Arts and Science (GSAS)



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Master’s Thesis Requirements and Forms

Academic Year 2016-2017

The MA thesis requirement is a multi-step process that should ideally begin during the first year of the program. Students in their first year are therefore encouraged to start thinking about a thesis topic in consultation with the Director of Graduate Studies and other faculty members in the program as early as the spring of their first year. By the end of the spring semester of the first year, students should have a preliminary thesis topic that they will have discussed with the Director of Graduate Studies and with faculty members in the program. Students are encouraged to conduct research on their topic during the summer of their first year. If the research involves working with human subjects, then it will need to be approved by the University Committee on Activities Involving Human Subjects (UCAIHS) prior to the beginning of the research process. IRB clearance is necessary for the completion of your thesis if you plan to conduct interviews, so please plan ahead and visit here.

In the fall of the second year, students are required to formalize their thesis topic by getting it approved by their thesis committee and by the Director of Graduate Studies. A thesis committee consists of a thesis advisor and of a second reader; it should be created in consultation with the Director of Graduate Studies. Once a thesis committee has been selected, students are required to write a thesis topic proposal in consultation with their thesis committee. The final proposal should be 2-3 pages in length and should include a preliminary bibliography. The proposal should clearly state your topic, delineate your research question(s), discuss the motivations behind your topic, and describe your material and the methodology that you will be relying on in your thesis. See Elements of a Proposal for further guidance. Once your thesis proposal has been approved by both of your thesis committee members, you will need to submit a copy of your proposal as well as a signed copy of the Masters Thesis Proposal Approval Form to the Director of Graduate Studies by November 30, 2016.

Once a thesis topic has been approved, students should begin the research/reading/writing process in consultation with their thesis committee. Students are highly encouraged to meet with their advisor prior to the December/January break in order to agree on a TO DO list for the break. Students should plan on using the break to make significant headway on their reading and research.

Ideally, students should meet with their committee members on a regular basis throughout the spring semester in order to obtain feedback on outlines and drafts, come up with deadlines and discuss progress towards completion. Students are also encouraged to meet regularly and consult with the Director of Graduate Studies.

The final draft of the thesis should be 35-50 pages long (50 pages is the absolute maximum); it should be divided into chapters and include proper citations and a bibliography. It should generally have the format and style of a substantial scholarly article in a Middle Eastern studies field. Joint Kevo/GloJo students usually submit a long form journalistic piece as their thesis, and accordingly work closely with the Journalism faculty throughout this process. In addition, joint students usually have a primary advisor from the journalism school and a second reader from Near Eastern Studies. In either case, the final thesis must present the author’s own research and relate this to existing scholarly understanding of the topic or field.

The final deadline for getting the thesis approved is Friday, April 24th, 2016. This means that by April 24th, your committee members will have had time to read your thesis, give you feedback and time to revise, and then approve the final revised version of the thesis. April 24th is NOT the deadline to hand your thesis to your advisors, it is the deadline to get it approved; so please plan accordingly. You must submit your thesis to your readers with ample time for them to read and review. If your thesis is not approved by April 24th you will not be able to graduate on time. You will need to turn in the following documents to receive approval:

  • GSAS MA Thesis Reader Sheet with signatures from both your adviser and your reader. A copy of the form is included with this handout. On the form, your committee members will have the option to either approve or not approve your thesis. It is your responsibility to make sure that your committee members are aware of the April 24th deadline and that they return the form to you by the deadline. If both your committee members approve your thesis by April 24th, then your thesis requirement is fulfilled. If it is not approved, then your thesis requirement will be considered incomplete, and you will not be able to graduate this May.
  • In addition to the GSAS MA Thesis Reader Sheet with the signatures of both of your committee members, you will need to submit a Thesis Title Page that includes the following information by the 24th of April. The title page should include 1) your thesis title 2) your name, 3) the date, and 4) the following required text: “Submitted to the Graduate School of Arts and Science in Partial Fulfillment of The Requirements for The Master of Arts in Near Eastern Studies at NYU”. The title page should also include 5) the signatures of both of your committee members.
  • If one of your committee members is an outside faculty member who is not based at NYU, then they can scan and email the forms to Professor Joanne Nucho ( with their signature and comments. You will also need to provide me with a copy of their CV.



Deadlines and Reminders

GSAS Dean’s Student Travel Grant Program:
The GSAS Dean provides funds for travel to professional meetings and conferences to present invited papers or posters. The Travel Grant Program provides 225 awards each year, in the amount of $500 each, to help students defray the cost of presenting their scholarly work. Application Deadline: October 22, 2016 Read More »

Gallatin Global Fellowship in Human Rights: GSAS master’s candidates are invited to apply for this fellowship program that supports selected student with up to $5,000 in funding for extended research or experiential learning projects that focus on international human rights issues. Application Deadline: Monday, October 30, 2016, midnight. Read More »

UPCOMING educational events and opportunities (UCAIHS)

IRB Seminar Series Presented by Dr. Jane McCutcheon

The Office of the University Committee on Activities Involving Human Subjects (UCAIHS/IRB) continues its Brown Bag seminar series on the responsibilities of researchers, faculty sponsors, and NYU for the protection of human subjects in research.  The seminars are open to anyone with an interest in research involving human subjects, and should be of special interest to persons currently conducting research with humans, or for those who are planning to conduct social behavioral research with humans and is non-medical.  Issues discussed at these seminars are relevant to all NYU Faculty, students, and administrators who are involved in the research process.

To register for individual seminars, please send an e-mail to with the date and title of the seminar you wish to attend in the subject line of your e-mail. Seminars will be held at NYU’s Office of Sponsored Programs Conference Room, 665 Broadway, Suite 801.  All brown bag seminars will begin promptly at 12:00 p.m.
IRB Made Easy - Wednesday, October 26, 2016 (12-2 p.m.)

Are you a researcher at NYU, or the faculty sponsor for a student research project, or is there someone you know who could benefit from a short session on IRB basics? “IRB Made Easy” is the first in a series of seminars that have been created to help investigators negotiate the submission, review and approval process of human subjects research.

IRB made easy covers:


  • Principles of conducting ethical human subjects research
  • Types of review
  • The application process itself; the new Evisions application
  • Common pitfalls

Internet Research Concerns – Wednesday, October 30, 2016 (12-2 p.m.)

This session will examine internet research using a three-tier approach that emphasizes the regulatory, ethical, and technical considerations unique to internet research.  This session will explore principles essential to responsible research, and provide practical guidelines that can be applied in internet research protocols such as online surveys, internet gaming, social media, crowd sourcing, and mobile monitoring.  This session is intended for individuals who want to understand the basic elements and the in-depth complexities of the internet as a tool and venue for research.

Ethical Treatment of Humans as Research Subjects (IRB for RCR) – Wednesday, December 14, 2016 (12-2 p.m.)


Are you considering participating in a research study? Do you have questions about what are your rights as a research subject? Do you wonder what is and is not covered by IRB regulations? Do you need a final credit for your RCR training? If you answer yes to any of these questions, please join the seminar on IRB considerations for Responsible Conduct of Research. NOTE: This is the only course in this series that can be used for Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR) credit. 

All seminars will be held at 665 Broadway, Suite 801. All seminars are brown bag. Please register for individual seminars by sending an e-mail to Please include the date and title of the seminar you wish to attend in the subject line of your e-mail. Please visit the UCAIHS web site for more information:


Please be advised that the deadline for all second year MA students filing a thesis this year to turn in a copy of the thesis proposal as well as a signed copy of the Masters Thesis Approval Form to the Director of Graduate Studies (Joanne Nucho) is November 30, 2016. Please find the Masters Thesis Approval form and more detailed information here:

Keep in mind this deadline is coming up fast and you are strongly encouraged to approach your potential primary and secondary advisors in the next week or two in order to secure their formal agreement to serve on your thesis committee.

If you have any questions or there is any confusion about this process, please make an appointment with the DGS, Joanne Nucho, via google calendar


If you are planning to graduate in May 2017, make sure you apply for graduation before 2/5/17. To apply, go to My Academics in Albert and Apply for Graduation:


Get help with your writing at THE WRITING CENTER

  • The Writing Center is a place where any NYU student can get help with his or her writing and is an excellent resource for first and second year MA students.
  • The Writing Center is a part of NYU's Expository Writing Program where one-on-one teaching and learning occur, as students work closely with EWP faculty at every stage of the writing process and on any piece of writing except for exams.
  • All Writing Center sessions are 40-45 minutes long. Try to schedule your appointment in advance of the due date for your paper so that you will have ample time to revise after the session.
  • You may schedule one appointment per week, up to two weeks ahead of time, using their online system.
  • All NYU students are also eligible for walk-in sessions, even those who have had an appointment earlier in the week. All students who want additional time beyond one session per week should use walk-in sessions.


To get a walk-in session, go to the Writing Center and put your name on the waiting list. When a cancellation or no-show occurs, a session becomes available. The waiting list operates on a first-come, first-serve basis.

  • If you are working on a draft, bring two copies of it, one for you and one for the consultant.
  • If your writing concern is related to a particular assignment, bring the assignment.
  • If you want to discuss feedback you have received from a teacher, bring a copy of the comments.
  • If you have notes, previous writing, a particular text, and/or research materials related to your draft, bring those items to the session.



Past MA theses are now available at the KEVO library for you to reference. Titles of recent theses may be found here, but a more exhaustive list may be found at the librarian's desk. Students may check out a thesis but must leave their ID with the librarian and return it within 2 hours.

Please contact Josh Anderson if you have any questions at