Master's thesis

Application for Admission

In order to obtain permission to write your Master’s thesis, you

  • must have completed all the modules* of your MPMD study programme.  (N.B.: you can get the approval only after all grades are entered in the LSF)
  • submit an official application [PDF] to write your Master’s thesis to the MPMD Administration via Email to by February 28, if you want to write your thesis in the following summer semester, or by August 31, if you want to write your thesis in the following winter semester.

The first and second supervisors for your final thesis must sign the application. If the first supervisor is unable to sign the application, send an email requesting his or her written agreement to supervise your thesis. Print out the email of agreement and attach this to your application.

(* However, if not more than ten credits are missing, your application CAN be approved. More details can be found in the Study regulations under section 9.)

Title, topic and supervisors

In the application you propose a thesis topic and name both supervisors.

The Master's thesis shall cover a topic from professional practice or a freely chosen topic. The topic shall be chosen in a manner so that it is possible to successfully cover it within the given time frame (18 weeks).

Any student should discuss the topic and the structure of the thesis as early as possible with the two supervisors.

The first supervisor must be a professor at the HTW. The second supervisor can be an external supervisor. He or she must have successfully completed a master’s degree programme or an equivalent degree. A diploma degree (Diplom) from a German University of Applied Science (Fachhochschule) is not sufficient to be a second supervisor. When writing with an external second supervisor, a copy of the degree shall be provided by the second supervisor along with the application form.

The Master's thesis topic may be changed once only, and only within the first six weeks of the completion period (request to reject topic of final thesis [PDF]).

For a slight change in the subject of the thesis and/or in the title of the thesis, a formal application to change the Master’s thesis topic is not required. However, any change in the subject or title of your Master's thesis needs to be approved by your first supervisor! Otherwise, the title of the thesis you hand in has to be exactly identical with the title given on the Admission to the Master's thesis.

Admission approval

You will get an official admission approval by the end of the programme semester. This will normally be March 31th or September 30th at the latest. The Admission will be send to you via email. Personal attendance is not required.

The approval will state

  • who will serve on the examination panel — comprising the first and second supervisor
  • the (exact!) title of your final thesis
  • when the period of time for writing your thesis will start and finish

Non-disclosure agreement

A non-disclosure agreement with a company, in which a Master’s thesis is written, is commonly signed, when confidential information from a company is included in the Master’s thesis, which should not become public.

A non-disclosure agreement needs to be signed by the first and second supervisor and the student before the period of time of writing of the thesis starts.

If a non-disclosure agreement exists, the Master’s thesis will not be published by the University library, as it usually would.

Writing period and formal requirements

Writing period

The writing period will start in the first week of April, if you write your thesis during a summer semester, or the first week of October, if you write your thesis during a winter semester.

The time to write your thesis will be 18 weeks!

Formal requirements

Before you start writing, download the MPMD thesis template from the MPMD Moodle course.

Please keep in mind the formal requirements to write a thesis. To make sure your thesis meets all the requirements please use the checklist (PDF).

The Master's thesis should encompass at least 60 pages of main text for the MPMD (excluding(!) appendices). There is no official limit as to the maximum number of pages, but we recommend not to exceed about 100 pages of text.


To organize your citations we recommend the software Citavi.


If requested for the purposes of disadvantage compensation for disability or any other reason, the examination board may define a longer completion period. To apply for an extension for writing your final thesis, submit the following documents to the examination board:

  • An application for extension of the completion time [PDF]. An application for the extension of the completion period will only be successful in exceptional circumstances. Exceptional circumstances are circumstances that are unforeseeable and do not fall in the candidate’s responsibility, nor are they connected to the Master’s thesis.
  • If you are pregnant, a copy of your maternity record (Mutterpass) with the expected date of birth. The deadline is extended by the period of statutory maternity leave.
  • In the event of incapability to take an exam due to illness, a medical certificate (so called “Attest”, a “Arbeitsunfähigkeitsbescheinigung” is not sufficient), including a clear description of the symptoms of the illness and proof of its duration, has to be sent to the BIfAW administration office, c/o MPMD, within 3 days of its issuance. The Examination Board will decide, if the submitted certificate shall be acknowledged. The submission deadline shall be extended by the same amount of time as the acknowledge incapability lasts. If the duration of the certified incapability exceeds 3 days, a medical certificate from a public health officer (“Amtsarzt”) has to be provided.

Handing in your Master's thesis

You ONLY have to submit the Master’s thesis in form of a PDF file via mail to on the submission date, the latest (hard deadline!!).

Please note that the title of your thesis has to be the exact title as given on your admission to the Master's thesis! (see paragraph "Title, topic and supervisors")

Written testimony (suggested wording)

I confirm, that the enclosed Master’s thesis has been completed independently and that no sources or aids other than those revealed have been used. Furthermore, all citations included literally or analogously in the thesis have been marked accordingly.                    

Place and date                     Original signature (by own hand)

PLEASE NOTE: Every thesis will be carefully and thoroughly reviewed by professionals and checked for plagiarism by our automatic scanning software. Violations of the German academic standards may lead to deduction of points, failure of the thesis or even de-registration.

Thesis defence

The oral defence of the final thesis will take place within three months after the thesis has been submitted, if

  • final thesis has been successfully completed and
  • all required modules have been successfully completed.

The main focus of the final oral examination is the Master's thesis topic. The topic is hereby brought into connection with the taught content of the Project Management and Data Science Master's programme. The final oral examination should establish

  • whether the student can independently verify the methodological procedures and the outcomes of the Master's thesis
  • possesses secure knowledge of the field addressed by the Master's thesis
  • and has mastered requisite presentation and communication skills.

One aspect of the thesis defence is a presentation of approx. 15 minutes during which the student offers a summary of the thesis' main points. The overall duration of the thesis defence is between 45 and 60 minutes.

Repeating your Master’s thesis

Your thesis will be graded with a "fail" (grade 5.0) if

  • you fail to submit your thesis to the examination board on time,
  • your notification of inability to take an examination is not recognised or
  • you deliver work of inadequate content.

You can have a free attempt (Freiversuch) if

  • this was your first attempt at writing your final thesis or final oral examination,
  • the final thesis or final oral examination was conducted within the regular period of study,
  • all necessary modules have been completed by then and you have a preliminary grade,
  • your first attempt at the final thesis or final oral examination was graded with "fail" (5.0).

If you have used your free attempt, you can repeat your final thesis.

The Examinations Office will send you a request to submit a topic proposal for repeat theses. You will be granted admission by the examination board.



  1. Do I have to pay 4,000 Euro if I write my thesis in the 5th semester?
    No, you don’t have to pay tuition fee for the 5th semester (only the semester fee).

    However, if you study / write your Master’s thesis in the 6th semester or even later, you will have to pay a reduced tuition fee of 1,500 EUR plus the semester fee for each additional semester.
  2. Do I need to reregister in order to extend my residence permit?                          No, you do not need to reregister and can save the semester fee. But you will need to present the official document "Admission to the Master's Thesis" in order to extend your residence permit. "Studierende in Bachelor-, Master- und Diplomstudiengängen können sich, wenn alle Fächer und das Praktische Studiensemester abgeschlossen sind und sie sich in der Abschlussarbeitsphase befinden "exmatrikulieren", d.h. nicht mehr rückmelden. Damit sparen sie die Rückmeldegebühr für das letzte Semester. In diesen Fällen ist trotz Exmatrikulation der Aufenthaltszweck – Abschluss des Studiums – noch nicht erreicht. Vor einer Verlängerung der Aufenthaltserlaubnis ist aber immer eine entsprechende Bescheinigung – etwa des betreuenden Hochschullehrers – über die Anmeldung der
    Abschlussarbeit zu verlangen."