MSc Defense

Unlike the doctoral final oral exams, a master’s defense is conducted according to departmental guidelines. However you must follow UBC’s standard layout and advice when writing your thesis.

Print friendly MSc Thesis and Defence Guidelines (117 KB)

Checklists and Guidelines

Before the Defence

  • Meet with your supervisory committee by December 1st of your second year to review your progress and to receive permission to continue with your research.
  • Check the current calendar for thesis submission deadlines: September, November, February and May completion. UBC has 4 degree conferral dates and 2 ceremony dates.
  • Hold a second committee meeting to receive approval from your supervisory committee to write up your thesis
  • Prepare your thesis according to the guidelines as specified by Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies
  • Submit a copy of your thesis to each examiner at least three weeks before the date of your defense
  • Your examining committee will comprise of your supervisory committee and one additional member (may be but need not be departmental) as chosen by your supervisor
  • Your supervisor will fill out the MSc Exam Committee Approval form and submit it to the Advisor for approval prior to the scheduling of the MSc defense
  • Your supervisor is the Exam Chair Person
  • You are responsible for arranging the thesis defense date with your examining committee

During the Defense

  • You will make a 20 to 30 minute oral presentation of your research
  • This will be followed by a question and answer session
  • Unlike PhD defenses, MSc defenses are NOT public

 After the Defense

  • Your examining committee will submit a pass/fail grade to the graduate secretary along with a evaluation of your performance MSc Exam Report.
  • You must complete all recommended revisions and obtain committee signatures for the required thesis forms prior to submitting your thesis to the Faculty of Graduate Studies
  • You must apply to graduate even if you do not plan to attend the convocation ceremony