Wayne State College
Menu
Act Now

MSE Degree Options

Thesis or Non-Thesis Option

In developing a program of study, graduate students may select from two different program options, thesis or non-thesis.

To change from one program option to another — after the program has commenced — the student must have the approval of the Dean of the School of Education and Counseling.

Thesis Option

The thesis option requires a minimum of 30 credit hours of course work plus 6 credits for the thesis. The thesis must be written in the area of specialization; the credit, however, may be applied toward the major field or electives.

Thesis Committee

The advisor will assign a thesis committee (three members of the appropriate department and one member of another school) with student input when the student nears completion of 24 credit hours and will notify the Graduate Office by completing the required Thesis Application Form. Also, unless prior arrangements are made, the advisor should arrange for the thesis oral examination and notify the appropriate officials of the time, dates and results.

Thesis Style

All theses must conform to the style prescribed by the Graduate Council. The American Psychology Association, Modern Language Association and Kate Turabian, A Manual for Writers (latest edition) have been adopted by the Council. Any deviation from the recommended style must have prior approval of the advisor and the Dean of Education and Counseling.

Non-Thesis Option

The non-thesis option requires a minimum of 36 credit hours of course work plus placement of one substantive final research artifact on file in the Graduate Office. Graduate students choosing a non-thesis option, near completion of 24 credit hours, must work with their advisor to complete (with required signatures) the Final Research form and submit it to the Graduate Office.

Any graduate student choosing a non-thesis option must work closely with his/her advisor to complete the research. Examples include a final research paper, project, portfolio or a comprehensive examination as described below. The non-thesis student shall file with the Graduate Office, School of Education and Counseling, and the appropriate school office a minimum of one acceptable final research artifact.

Final Research Requirement

Final Research is defined as one acceptable graduate paper, project, portfolio and/or comprehensive examination.

Graduate level research is a graduation requirement for the Master of Science in Education (MSE) Degree. As defined in the Wayne State College General and Graduate Catalog, a graduate research artifact is one acceptable research paper, project, portfolio and/or comprehensive examination that demonstrates the candidate’s abilities to meet all of the following criteria:

  • knowledge of research and the skills of inquiry,
  • depth of thought, organization, competence in the discipline and the ability to reflect on practice, and
  • writing proficiency at the graduate level.

The journey of formulating and writing your research paper/project/portfolio and/or comprehensive examination begins with your advisor. However, the responsibility for this final research requirement is that of the graduate student; your advisor is the person who will guide you through the process. Check with your advisor concerning the requirements and details of the final research requirements.

Final Research Paper

Minimum requirements regarding the final research paper for graduate students are as follows:

  • 15 to 20 pages of content;
  • correct use of APA or MLA documentation;
  • a bibliography, reference page or works cited page that reflects a broad awareness and understanding of research appropriate for graduate study.

Upon approval of the advisor, the final research paper must be placed on file with the Graduate Office and the appropriate School Office 28 calendar days prior to the anticipated date of graduation. The artifact filed must be an original copy, contain a signature sheet, and be signed by the student, advisor, Department Chair, School Dean, the Director of Graduate Studies and Dean of the School of Education and Counseling.

Final Research Project

A typical final research project would include action research conducted by participants [example: such as the type required in the Communities of Learning delivery model]. This project would connect directly to the candidate’s professional assignment using these requirements:

  • 15 to 20 pages of content;
  • correct use of APA or MLA documentation;
  • a bibliography, reference page or works cited page that reflects a broad awareness and understanding of research appropriate for graduate study.

Upon approval of the advisor, the final research project must be placed on file with the Graduate Office and the appropriate School Office 28 calendar days prior to the anticipated date of graduation. The artifact filed must be an original copy, contain a signature sheet, and be signed by the student, advisor, Department Chair, School Dean, the Director of Graduate Studies and Dean of the School of Education and Counseling.

Final Research Portfolio

A typical final research portfolio would include a Presentation/Exhibition based on research conducted by the candidate connected directly to the candidate’s professional assignment using these requirements:

  • documentation in print (15 to 20 pages of content) or provided electronically (CDRom/DVD);
  • correct use of APA or MLA documentation;
  • a bibliography, reference page or works cited page that reflects a broad awareness and understanding of research appropriate for graduate study.

Upon approval of the advisor, the final research portfolio must be placed on file with the Graduate Office and the appropriate School Office 28 calendar days prior to the anticipated date of graduation. The artifact filed must be an original copy, contain a signature sheet, and be signed by the student, advisor, Department Chair, content area School Dean, the Director of Graduate Studies and Dean of the School of Education and Counseling.

Final Comprehensive Exam

Candidates for graduate degrees may choose (or must choose if required in their program emphasis) to complete a final comprehensive examination to fulfill the Research Requirement. A typical comprehensive exam provides the candidate for the MSE with the opportunity to demonstrate 1) a thorough understanding of the goals of the Conceptual Framework (see below) as experienced through the graduate education core courses, and 2) demonstrate a thorough knowledge of their content emphasis.

The comprehensive exam is determined by graduate faculty in the appropriate school. The form of the content area emphasis comprehensive exam (written, oral, portfolio, performance, or a combination thereof) is determined by the content area faculty.

In their comprehensive examinations, advanced candidates will explain and provide examples in support of meeting the following goals (classroom application, course work, and/or internships, and/or research):

  • professional dispositions that pervade every aspect of their profession.
  • unique nature of individuals --cognitively, linguistically, socially, emotionally, and physically.
  • content required for their assigned position.
  • effective strategies that foster engagement and build the relationship that lead to success.
  • professional responsibility and professional skills required for their position.

Candidates for the MSE must contact their advisors at the beginning of their final semester of study to arrange and verify the time and place of the final exam and complete the Application for Comprehensive Examination and file it with the Graduate Office no less than 2 weeks prior to the proposed examination date.

Upon approval of the advisors, the results of the final comprehensive examination must be placed on file with the Graduate Office and the appropriate School Office 28 calendar days prior to the anticipated date of graduation. The artifact filed must be an original copy, contain a signature sheet, and be signed by the student, advisor, Department Chair, School Dean, the Director of Graduate Studies and Dean of the School of Education and Counseling.