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Arkistoitu opetusohjelma 2017–2018
Selaat vanhentunutta opetusohjelmaa. Voimassa olevan opetusohjelman löydät täältä.
ENGS4 MA Thesis Seminar 5 ECTS
Period I Period II Period II Period IV
Language of instruction
Type or level of studies
Advanced studies
Course unit descriptions in the curriculum
Englannin kielen, kirjallisuuden ja kääntämisen tutkinto-ohjelma
Faculty of Communication Sciences

General description

Professor Nevala's Seminars

Language in context, discourse studies, applied linguistics

The seminar is intended for students who are interested in analyzing language use in context, i.e. in relation to various language-external factors, using qualitative or quantitative methods, including discourse analysis or corpus linguistics. The students’ interests can relate, for example, to English in specific social or situational contexts, bi- and multilingualism, computer-mediated communication, or language use in the history of English. Students interested in studying English in the context of learning and teaching are also welcome.

The seminar offers practical advice, guidance and support during the process of planning and writing the thesis, addressing each step in the research process. As working methods we will use collaborative group work, including discussions of relevant reading and the students’ own projects.

During the first term, students are expected to produce a research proposal, specifying the main elements of their pro gradu thesis, to present it to the seminar group, and to start working on their thesis. In the second term, students continue to work on their thesis. The aim during the seminar year is to finish a draft version of the entire thesis; the minimum requirement is to produce at least 1-2 draft chapters of the thesis, serving as “the seminar paper”. Towards the end of the seminar year, each student’s thesis draft will be discussed in class.

Lecturer Norri's Seminar

My seminar is primarily meant for students who are interested in doing research on English vocabulary, English word-formation, dictionaries of English, and English for Specific Purposes (English as used in various types of scientific writing), but other linguistic topics are also welcome. In seminar papers dealing with vocabulary, it is possible to concentrate either on Present-day English or on chronological developments in English vocabulary and dictionaries of English. The following are some examples of topics covered in recent MA theses: film-related neologisms in the magazine Total Film; slogans used in refractive surgery advertising; the offensiveness and usage of the lexemes bitch and son of a bitch; insulting nationality words in some British and American dictionaries and in the British National Corpus.

In the autumn term, we will concentrate on finding a topic for you to write on and on putting together a research proposal (circa five to ten pages). Practical questions relating to the writing of an MA thesis will also be addressed, as will various ways of finding research material for your study (corpora and other electronic sources, printed books, etc.).

During the spring term, students are expected to write a seminar paper (approximately twenty pages, but longer contributions are also welcome), to be presented and discussed in our meetings. The seminar paper is usually a first draft of the MA thesis, and our purpose should be to lay a solid foundation for the final thesis in our sessions, ideally completing a significant portion of the thesis in the course of the academic year.

To apply for a place in my seminar, please act according to the instructions. I would appreciate it if those who are interested in attending the seminar sent me an email (juhani.norri@staff.uta.fi) to arrange for an appointment before the seminar officially begins. It would be good to discuss your topic and your approach to it as early as possible. (My summer holiday runs from July 10th till August 13th; meetings are possible both before and after it.)

University Lecturer Piipponen’s Seminar

This seminar is open for students interested in literary analysis and cultural studies. I would like to recommend this seminar especially for those students who are interested in women’s writing and gender/queer studies, popular literature (especially detective fiction), the study of genres and generic conventions, American literature (1900-), and literary/filmic/televisual works dealing with imperialism, postcolonialism, ethnicity and multiculturalism.

During the autumn, participants start working on their thesis and write a research proposal in which they specify the primary material, research question and theoretical approach of the thesis (approximately five pages); the proposal is then presented to and discussed by the seminar group. During the spring, participants continue their work and present their seminar paper (which ideally consists of one or two chapters of the actual thesis). The goal of the seminar is to acquire the knowledge and skills needed to complete the thesis and to offer support and practical advice during the writing process. Besides the seminar sessions, also individual consultation sessions will be arranged according to the needs of the participants.

To apply for a place, please act as instructed; if you want to start working on your thesis before the autumn, please send me an email as soon as possible (maarit.piipponen@uta.fi).

Associate Professor Riquet's Seminar

This thesis seminar is especially recommended to students interested in literary spaces, the links between literature and geography, ecocriticism, travel writing, magic and the supernatural in fiction, phenomenology, deconstruction, and cinema, but students working on other topics are also welcome.

In the first semester, you will develop a concise abstract (300 words) and a detailed research proposal (5-8 pages) for your project; in the second semester, you will first submit a draft chapter (6000-8000 words) before writing the thesis itself. Throughout the seminar, we will discuss important questions pertaining to research techniques and methodologies as well as academic writing and style. We will also occasionally read texts written by established academics in order to discuss the problems and challenges they encountered and the solutions they found; in this way, we will familiarise ourselves with a variety of models and approaches to research in the field of literary and cultural studies.

At each stage, students will present their projects to the class and get feedback from each other. Active participation on the part of all students is therefore an indispensable part of the seminar. Students will be assessed on the basis of the different assignments, attendance, and participation in class.

Enrolment for University Studies

Enrolment time has expired


Maarit Piipponen, Teacher responsible
Johannes Riquet, Teacher responsible
Juhani Norri, Teacher responsible
Minna Nevala, Teacher responsible


4-Sep-2017 – 23-May-2018
Group 1 (Piipponen, literature)
Wed 13-Sep-2017 - 11-Oct-2017 weekly at 16-18, Pinni B 4086
Wed 25-Oct-2017 - 13-Dec-2017 weekly at 16-18, Pinni B 4086
Wed 10-Jan-2018 - 21-Feb-2018 weekly at 16-18, Pinni B 4086
Wed 7-Mar-2018 - 23-May-2018 weekly at 16-18, Pinni B 4086
Group 2 (Riquet, literature)
Wed 6-Sep-2017 - 11-Oct-2017 weekly at 14-16, Päätalo A35
Wed 25-Oct-2017 - 13-Dec-2017 weekly at 14-16, Päätalo A35
Wed 10-Jan-2018 - 21-Feb-2018 weekly at 14-16, Pinni B 4031
Wed 7-Mar-2018 - 23-May-2018 weekly at 14-16, Pinni B 4031
Group 3 (Norri, linguistics)
Mon 4-Sep-2017 - 9-Oct-2017 weekly at 16-18, Pinni B 4086
Mon 23-Oct-2017 - 11-Dec-2017 weekly at 16-18, Pinni B 4086
Mon 8-Jan-2018 - 19-Feb-2018 weekly at 16-18, Pinni B 4086
Mon 5-Mar-2018 - 21-May-2018 weekly at 16-18, Pinni B 4086
Group 4 (Nevala, linguistics)
Wed 6-Sep-2017 - 11-Oct-2017 weekly at 14-16, Päätalo A33
Wed 25-Oct-2017 - 13-Dec-2017 weekly at 14-16, Päätalo A33
Wed 10-Jan-2018 - 21-Feb-2018 weekly at 14-16, Pinni B 4086
Wed 7-Mar-2018 - 23-May-2018 weekly at 14-16, Pinni B 4086
Group 5 (Nevala, linguistics, continues from spring 2017)
Wed 13-Sep-2017 - 11-Oct-2017 weekly at 16-18, Pinni B 4031
Wed 25-Oct-2017 - 13-Dec-2017 weekly at 16-18, Pinni B 4031


Numeric 1-5.