Master's Essay: A substantial research paper approved by two faculty members is required.
The master's essay is the product of an individual research project with professionally significant results. The work should achieve the quality of a publishable academic article or set of articles. By the beginning of the second year, the student is expected to have developed a relationship with a Center faculty associate who will serve as the student's essay advisor. The research and writing is done under the supervision of the essay advisor, who serves as the primary reader. Both the primary reader and one other faculty member must approve the final written work, and the student is expected to work with both readers to determine the topic, methods, content, and format of the essay.
The essay should be 50 to 100 pages in length. A prospectus including the topic, bibliography and methodology must be submitted to and approved ahead of time by the advisor. Once the essay is complete, a Master's Essay/Thesis Reader's Form must be filled out and submitted to the center with a bound, clean unmarked copy of the approved thesis.
You may elect to enroll in an independent research or directed reading course closely related to the work on the master's essay. This course can carry graduate credit that will count towards the area course work requirement, and is typically taken the semester before the term in which the student plans to complete the essay.
During the semester that the essay is being completed, the student must be enrolled in SAS 798, MA Essay in South Asian Studies for 1-6 credits. These credits do NOT count toward your area total of 24. The number of credits is determined in consultation with your essay advisor.
In rare instances, the essay may be waived with the permission of the student's academic advisor and the director. The student must have completed 30 hours of area course work including two courses requiring a substantial research writing component. The student must submit a letter of request and explanation to the advisor. The advisor then submits the student's letter and a letter of agreement to the director. The director will inform the student's advisor and the student if the waiver is granted. The initial request should be submitted no later than the semester prior to the semester in which the student plans to graduate
Advisory Prerequisite: Permission of instructor required. Center MA Students. Graduate standing.