Disseminating your results is a part of the academic process. You
can do it by presenting papers at conferences or seminars, producing
posters, and, of course, publishing in journals and books. You may
choose to disseminate your masters’ thesis by including it in your
institution’s electronic archives (called self-archiving). In doing so,
you make it available worldwide for free download to anyone who has
access to the Internet.
Written presentationsWhen you have submitted a thesis you have acquired new insights. If
you would like to share this with a wider audience than your own
teachers and peers, an op-ed on your topic might be a good channel for communicating your findings.
Choose a newspaper or journal that is likely to be interested in your
topic. If your research concerns students and part-time jobs, a student
paper like Universitas or Studvest might want
to publish your article. Is your topic of national interest? Try the
daily press. To enhance your chances of being published; try
linking your findings to current events. A topic like students and
part-time jobs might be of interest in the autumn, around the beginning
of term. If you have written on climate change in the Norwegian Arctic,
you may want to present your findings in a scholarly journal, e.g. Klima. Always be conscious of your target group and genre.
Have someone read through your text before you present it to its
intended audience; they may have ideas about how you can improve your
text, and they can provide new perspectives to enrich its content.
Take particular care:
- that you have clear transitions in your text
- that you have intermediate titles
- that the different sections of the text progress logically
Who is your audience?
- How much information do they have on the topic already?
- What is their relationship to the topic; is it academic, work-related or of private interest?
- Is a summary of the topic sufficient or do you need to go into greater detail?
- Does the audience expect a formal or informal presentation?
- Give the audience space for their own thoughts
How should the presentation be structured?
- Formulate a title which is short, catchy and precise
- Select a suitable amount of material to fill the time you have available
- Indicate what you are going to say, say it, and finally; summarise
- You should state clearly in the introduction what you are going to
speak about. The aim of the introduction is to capture the attention of
your listeners and stimulate their curiosity
- Then present the main points of the argumentation and ensure you cover everything you want to say
- The conclusion should clearly emphasise your main points
- You should state clearly in the introduction what you are going to
Visual aidsUse visual aids to reinforce your message. Some correlations can only be explained through, or with the help of, visualisations.
- Poster presentations
- The title should be short and poignant
- Carefully design your pictures, illustrations and captions
- Use as little text as possible
- Presentations made using PowerPoint or similar software and a projector:
- The programs are simple and intuitive to use
- To design your slides, you can select a pre-set template suitable for displaying text, graphs, tables and pictures
- Do not exaggarate the use of effects such as animations; they can easily draw attention away from your message
- A good template uses around 15 slides for a half hour presentation
- Editing electronic presentations is easy. You can quickly amend
slides and where required make corrections immediately before the
- Make a printout of your slides in case of technical problems
- Your presentation can include:
- Experiments, demonstrations
- Web pages
- University logo and graphic profile (Check with your institution)
Can you check the room in advance?
- Positioning of the audience
- Lighting, room temperature, ventilation
- Legibility of slides/transparencies
- Do you have compatible software?
Tips for presentationBefore the presentation:
- Make sure you know the contents of your presentation well!
- Show what you know and make yourself understood
- Keep to the time schedule
- Practice the presentation (even though you are not nervous)
- Write a manuscript or notes, but prepare to talk freely, rather than read your written text out loud
- Remember good manners:
- At the beginning: Thank for the invitation after you have been introduced and before you start the presentation.
- At the end: Thank the audience for their attention.
- Think about communication; look at the audience, maintain eye contact.
- Speak clearly; use a microphone to avoid shouting.
- Pay attention to body language. Avoid fumbling with your hands.
- Do not allow the audience to interrupt as this can easily distract
you. Ask the audience to wait until the discussion section at the end.
You are the speaker and you decide how the presentation will be carried
out. You have been allocated a period of time, and it is up to you
decide how that time should be spent.
- Make sure there is time for questions from the audience at the end.
Remember that no one expects you to be able to answer all questions.
Self-archivingMany university colleges and universities offer master’s students the
opportunity to self-archive their theses electronically in the
Some institutional archives in Norway:
- BORA – University of Bergen.
- BORA – Bergen University College
- BORA – Norwegian School of Economics
- DUO – Digital publications at the University of Oslo
- Munin – University of Tromsø
- Information about the Brage archive
- A list of research archives worldwide is available at OpenDoar
institutions freely available on the Internet. Works can be retrieved
using search engines such as Google Scholar. If you wish to make your
master’s thesis available in this way, you must find out about your
institution’s submission procedures. Some institutions allow you to
self-archive your thesis at the same time that you submit it for
examination. Other institutions will only allow self-archiving after the
examination process has been completed. It is never too late to
self-archive your work. Contact your institution if you decide later on
that you wish to self-archive.
Publication vs. self-archivingIf you wish to have your master’s thesis published commercially as an
article, chapter or book, it is important to check the publisher’s
policy on self-archiving. Some publishers consider self-archiving as
equivalent to publication and may reject your manuscript on this basis.
The situation varies from publisher to publisher. Accordingly it is
important to think carefully about how you wish to disseminate your text
before you self-archive. Otherwise you may find that you have
inadvertently limited your options. If you have signed a contract with a
publisher you can always self-archive in the future.
If you have published an article, you can self-archive it if your
publishing contract allows this. In Norway, the publishers’ and authors’
associations have collaborated to produce a standard contract for publication in journals, which permits self-archiving.
Under this contract, the publisher has non-exclusive rights regarding
the digital publication, duplication and publication of the work. The
author may include the work on her or his own website or that of her of
With regard to international journals, consult the Sherpa/Romeo database. This database contains information about most publishers’ and journals’ policies on self-archiving.
Contact your institution’s library if you have questions about
copyright, self-archiving and the dissemination of articles in different
versions. For more information about Open Access publishing and
self-archiving in Norway, e.g., about Norwegian publishers’ practices,
see the Norwegian website openaccess.no.
Dysthe, O., & Kjeldsen, J. E. (1999) Skriveråd for studenter (No. 1/99). Bergen.
Vaage, S. (2001)
Perspektivtaking, rekonstruksjon av erfaring og kreative læreprosessar
George Herbert Mead og John Dewey om læring. I O. Dysthe (Red.), Dialog, samspel og læring (s. 129-150).
‘Learning Support Services. Skills for Learning. CD-rom version’, 2004.
Last updated: Ma
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