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MSc Dissertation Handbook

2017/2018

This handbook provides key information on Dissertations. Your Programme Director/Advisor may provide more
specific advice on the academic nature of your work and/or Programme specific information.
Content Page Number

Course Details ......................................................................................................................................................... 3


Course Description and Objectives ......................................................................................................................... 3
Key Dates & Deadlines ............................................................................................................................................ 4
Planned Student Learning Experiences................................................................................................................... 4
Dissertation Advisors .............................................................................................................................................. 4
Leave from Edinburgh ............................................................................................................................................. 5
Planning and Writing the Dissertation .................................................................................................................... 6
Review before Submission ...................................................................................................................................... 7
Dissertation Formats ............................................................................................................................................... 8
Guidelines for Formatting and Handing in Assessed Work .................................................................................. 13
Assessment ........................................................................................................................................................... 15
Feedback ............................................................................................................................................................... 19
Statement of Ethics ............................................................................................................................................... 19
Business School Assistance with Research ........................................................................................................... 19
Employment .......................................................................................................................................................... 19
Plagiarism and Academic Misconduct .................................................................................................................. 20
Freedom of Information Act ................................................................................................................................. 20
Appeals.................................................................................................................................................................. 21
Updating Student Personal Information ............................................................................................................... 21
Key Contacts and Consultation ............................................................................................................................. 21
APPENDIX 1: Dissertation Support System (DSS) .................................................................................................. 22
APPENDIX 2: PGT Dissertation Leave Request ...................................................................................................... 23
APPENDIX 3: Contact Information ........................................................................................................................ 26
APPENDIX 4: End of Programme Mini-Survey 2017-18 ........................................................................................ 27
APPENDIX 5: Working with Companies ................................................................................................................ 28
APPENDIX 6: Dissertation Submission Checklist ................................................................................................... 29

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Course Details
Title: Dissertation
College: Arts, Humanities and Social Science
School: The University of Edinburgh Business School
Contact Hours: A minimum of three meetings
Prerequisite: Students must have satisfied the progression requirements to proceed to the
Dissertation, as laid out in taught assessment regulation 56
http://www.ed.ac.uk/files/atoms/files/taughtassessmentregulations.pdf
Semester: Block 5 (Sem 2) and beyond

This is an MSc 60 credit course. As per the Scottish Credit Qualifications Framework (SCQF), this means that it should
entail 600 hours of student effort.

This handbook relates to the following dissertation courses:

Dissertation (MSc Accounting and Finance) (CMSE11058)


Dissertation (MSc Banking and Risk) (CMSE11181)
Dissertation (MSc in Business Analytics) (CMSE11348)
Dissertation (MSc Carbon Finance) (CMSE11156)
Dissertation (Entrepreneurship and Innovation) (CMSE11307)
Dissertation (MSc Finance) (CMSE11377)
Dissertation (MSc Human Resource Management) (CMSE11171)
Dissertation - MSc International Human Resource Management (CMSE11288)
Dissertation (MSc International Business and Emerging Markets) (BUST11119)
Dissertation (MSc in Management) (CMSE11025)
Dissertation (MSc Marketing) (CMSE11137)
Dissertation (MSc Marketing and Business Analysis) (CMSE11138)

Course Description and Objectives


The Business School MSc Dissertation is undertaken in the spring and summer period following Semester 2.

Undertaking the Dissertation requires you to develop a deep level of analysis and understanding of the theory and
processes of organisations and the business environment through the completion of a piece of individual research.

The objectives of the Dissertation are:

To make a study in depth of a topic which you are particularly interested in within the field of business studies
To gain experience of planning, designing, executing and reporting a significant piece of individual research
To gain experience of the processes involved in research, such as obtaining information from people, securing
their co-operation, analysing and evaluating data, framing recommendations, and other methods of field study
and data collection
To learn how to communicate, via a report, complex ideas and information in a coherent and structured manner

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Key Dates & Deadlines

January and February 2018 Formulate ideas and develop Dissertation proposal
Monday 12th March to Monday 19th March 2018 Students submit Dissertation proposal to the DSS
Monday 16th April 2018 Students informed of Advisors
Friday 29th June 2018 Deadline for submitting Research Ethics form to ATLAS
Thursday 23rd August 2018, 4pm Deadline for submitting Dissertation

Planned Student Learning Experiences


The Dissertation provides the opportunity for students to engage in a research project and, in particular, the ability
to study a specific topic and question, identify the issues and how they may be researched, collect and validate
appropriate data, organise and discuss the findings, their reliability and validity and present results in a logical and
clear manner.

The Dissertation requires students to identify and define a research topic, conduct the research and write it up in a
Dissertation format. This is all within a predetermined timeframe, which from start to finish lasts approximately 3
months - May/June through August for 12-month students.

Undertaking the Dissertation provides the opportunity to learn and practice important skills you will need in your
career: researching and writing. The writing-up requires you to organise the arguments and communicate these in
an effective manner. It is also the part of the programme where you can apply the knowledge and understanding
from taught courses, and additional self-directed reading/research, and the analytical and problem-solving
techniques you have acquired during your studies to investigate a specialist interest in greater depth. Given the
breadth of subject specialisms in Postgraduate Taught studies and the known wide-ranging interests of students, the
range of possible topic areas that can be examined is very broad and cannot be covered in this handbook. Every
Dissertation Project will be different: there is no single right way, but many wrong ways to carry out research.
Defining clear aims, careful planning and good organisation as well as listening to advice and feedback will help with
the process.

Dissertation Advisors
The Business School allocates a one-on-one Dissertation Advisor who will assist you and provide advice and feedback
on the research as it evolves during the various stages of the process.

The role of the Dissertation Advisor is to help you define the scope of your dissertation work. (S)he will advise you
about relevant readings and help you structure your ideas into research questions. During the course of your
dissertation work your advisor will comment on your progress; in particular, (s)he will read two chapters but only
once - from your dissertation and point our opportunities for improvement. (S)he may also identify relevant
expertise in the department that may be available to support your work.

The role of your advisor is not to assist you with continual revision until the dissertation has acquired a certain grade
that you may wish to achieve. Responsibility for the academic quality of a Dissertation is the students alone. An
advisors approval of your progress does not imply any particular grade or classification. Nor you should be asking
your advisor at any point to comment on the potential grade or classification of your work.

The Business School will try to match Advisors to Dissertation topics and areas of specialism but cannot guarantee an
internal Advisor in any particular discipline or specialism. However, all internal and external members of staff are
capable of acting as an Advisor for the Dissertation. The Business School invites external faculty to support students
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with their dissertations, to complement existing faculty expertise. Nevertheless, we would encourage, as far as
possible, a close alignment of student topics to the Advisors areas of interest and expertise. Students are required
to develop a brief research proposal and topic for their Dissertation. Please note that the proposal students submit
for the Advisor Allocation process will develop and change over time.

The submission of dissertation proposals and the matching of proposals with advisors is managed through the
Dissertation Support System (DSS) (See Appendix 1). Students should not make firm agreements with an Advisor out
with the DSS but may be able to consult academic members of staff regarding their proposal prior to submission on
the DSS. Potential Advisors are often not able to meet with students before proposals are submitted, and prefer for
proposals to be prepared without input from faculty.

A list of all Business School staff (and their research interests) can be found here: http://www.business-
school.ed.ac.uk/about/people. A list of external Dissertation Advisors will be published on Learn.

Once students have been allocated to an Advisor, they are under that staff members guidance throughout the
entire process. Even though a student may change their topic they will remain with the same Advisor. Students can
only be transferred to another Dissertation Advisor with approval of the Director of Postgraduate Programmes
and then only in very exceptional circumstances. A significant change in the topic area is not allowed without prior
permission from the Advisor.

Students are required to keep in regular contact with their Advisor. As a minimum they should meet with their
Advisor three times. In particular, the following key meetings are required:
A preliminary discussion of the students proposal with the Advisor (this will cover, broadly, research ethics; the
feasibility of the idea; possible sources of data and reading; methods of analysis; a plan or timetable). Students
are responsible for arranging an appointment with their designated Advisor
Assessment of progress to date. This is most likely to be a short meeting to discuss data collection and to map
out further progress
Final meeting. In the latter part of the process, students may meet with their advisor to discuss the analysis or
interpretation of data collected or to provide feedback on a sample chapter.

Leave from Edinburgh


If you intend to travel for research/study purposes for any duration of time, your leave needs to be authorised and
approved by relevant parties (please see appendix 2 for further information). You must complete a Dissertation
leave request form (appendix 2) and submit this to the PGT office either in person, or via email along with your travel
itinerary and contact details. The leave request must include a written explanation and justification for the absence.
No requests for leave will be granted retrospectively. Students are permitted to be away on personal leave for up to
2 weeks without formal approval, however you must make your Personal Tutor and Student Support Team aware of
any such periods of personal leave.

No travel plans should be made prior to requests being considered by Programme Directors and Advisors and
formally approved/rejected. If your leave is not approved, you are expected to remain in Edinburgh until the
submission of your dissertation.

Please refer to the DRPS Regulation 23 http://www.drps.ed.ac.uk/16-17/regulations/PGDRPS2016-17.pdf


This states that students must be available for assessment and face to face contact with their Programme Director
and Advisor. Certain students visa conditions may require the University to monitor attendance and participation in
specific ways.

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Non-Contact Hours
Students are expected to undertake the Dissertation outside of contact hours. The Dissertation is a major element of
study. Successful completion of the Dissertation requires considerable time to be devoted to researching the topic,
gathering relevant data and writing up the research in the appropriate manner. Students should not underestimate
the time required and the need to make an early start on reviewing the literature and collecting the data as well as
writing up their topic as they research it. In addition, if students intend to use modes of enquiry with which they are
not entirely familiar, they will need to spend time to understand the qualitative or quantitative methods of analysis
that they intend to use. Writing up in an appropriate manner is also a lengthy process.

As the Dissertation is equivalent to four taught courses, and is a complex piece of work, students should expect to
devote a considerable amount of time to its completion. As per the Scottish Credit Qualifications Framework (SCQF),
this means that it should entail approximately 600 hours (MSc 60 credits) of student effort. It is, therefore, important
for students to understand fully the need to front-load their efforts as much as possible to allow enough time to
complete the Dissertation within the time allowed.

Planning and Writing the Dissertation


The specifics should be discussed with the Advisor, so that there is an understanding about what roles are expected
at each stage.

The time available for the Dissertation is from the completion of the taught element of the Programme until the
submission date of 23rd August 2018. There is no set way to plan a Dissertation: different projects and dissertation
formats (see dissertation formats section) require different approaches and the ways people work will vary.
However, the outline below is an indication of the critical points you will have to pass.

Reading and Planning Stage


Select broad topic and identify possible objectives
Initial reading (plus note-taking and reflection) to focus the project
Present proposal indicating firm title, objectives, outline, agreed methodology and provisional bibliography

Main Research and Writing Stage


Complete reading (there is always a point to stop)
Conduct any fieldwork (ensuring the appropriate research ethics approval has already been sought for any
surveys or interviews etc.)
Produce detailed chapter outlines with bibliography
Write
Submit a draft chapter for Advisor to review
Presentation and conclusions

Completion Stage
Reflect, revise and redraft (check spelling and bibliography)
Submit final version for examination

A typical traditional research dissertation is usually broken into four to six chapters, including a short introduction
and conclusion. The chapter structure helps break the Dissertation into manageable parts and ensures progression
from one theme to another. The introduction spells out the focus of the study and its objectives or research
questions, explaining why these were interesting to the author and 'locating' them in the field. It should also include
an outline of the subsequent chapters. In the case of primary research, there should be a separate chapter providing

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an account and justification of the research design and methodology adopted. The conclusion should reflect on the
implications of your findings for wider theory and where relevant, for practice, picking up themes about the
rationale of the study in your introduction. How the substantive chapters are organised will depend on personal
preference and the nature of the research. However, you must ensure that your treatment is sufficiently analytical,
integrating conceptual and empirical material. This integration may run through the body of the work or it may take
place largely in a discrete analysis chapter.

It is a good idea to reread the guidelines on writing an essay (which can be found on Learn), bearing in mind that
your substantive chapters are likely to be around essay length. Each substantive chapter should have a beginning
and an end which between them signpost clearly.

How this chapter fits into the rest of the Dissertation


The structure of the chapter
The main points which the reader should take from it. Always ensure that your argumentation is as tight as
possible and clearly presented.

Students often rush their conclusions so it is advisable for your Advisor to see one draft chapter earlier on, so that
you can incorporate any feedback into subsequent writing, but again all of this should be negotiated.

For students, the simple lesson is the more methodical your approach, the more enjoyable the experience and the
greater the quality of the final Dissertation.

Review before Submission


Your Dissertation Advisor will read and provide feedback on TWO chapters of the dissertation we normally advise
that these are the literature review and the findings/results chapters but you can make this decision in discussion
with your advisor. Note that this is an opportunity for formative feedback and the chapter will not be marked in the
conventional sense. This is an opportunity to obtain helpful advice on the content and presentation of the relevant
section. You will be able to feed forward the advice from your Dissertation Advisor into the other sections of the
dissertation. It is important to note that your Advisor will not read and comment on a complete draft of your
dissertation prior to submission.

Students who are unsure as to particular elements in their Dissertation are advised to seek advice in the first
instance from their Advisor by email. Many questions can be resolved by a simple exchange of emails, which is likely
to be quicker than setting up a meeting.

Your Advisor will have academic duties, and you should make provision for a delay between requesting advice
and receiving a response or confirming meetings.

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Dissertation Formats
The majority of Business School Dissertations are traditional research projects. If you chose to complete a non-
traditional Dissertation, you should be looking for comments on each of the elements expected in a non-traditional
format. The following guidelines are offered by the School but individual programmes can offer specific guidance.

Please note:

Business Plans and Business Reports are only available for MSc Entrepreneurship and Innovation, MSc
Management and MSc International Business and Emerging Markets.

Company Sponsored Dissertations (CSDs) and Traditional Dissertations are available to all programmes.

For MSc in Human Resource Management and MSc International Human Resource Management students that are
writing a Dissertation with the aim of CIPD Professional Accreditation, separate guidance is available on Learn in
the Dissertation folder. Due to the CIPD requirements, the same indicative word count applies to both Traditional
Dissertations and Company Sponsored Dissertations (CSDs).

A limited number of CSDs are sourced by the by the student development team for students on MSc Finance, MSc
B&R, MSc HRM and MSc IHRM. Academic staff may also have opportunities linked to their research interests.
Other students interested in CSDs are encouraged to speak to the Student Development team, personal tutor or
programme director for advice on making new or utilising existing connections.

Traditional Research Dissertation:


This involves critical engagement with a body of literature, followed by the collection and analysis of qualitative or
quantitative data that can help to address gaps in the literature and improve our understanding of a particular
subject in business.

Company-Sponsored Dissertation:
Also often termed a Consultancy Project, this type of dissertation involves the student in researching, analysing and
making recommendations on an issue or problem that is posed by a client organisation. The dissertation must still
be informed by a critical understanding of relevant literature and theoretical frameworks, but the emphasis is on the
application of this understanding, and the collection, analysis and evaluation of relevant information in order to
contribute to addressing the clients issue or problem. A defining characteristic of this type of dissertation is that the
objectives and research questions are the result of negotiation between the student and the client organisation.

For additional requirements when working with companies, please see Appendix 5.

Business Report:
This type of dissertation will reflect on specific business issues gathered from experience in, or from the study of, a
specific business setting. It will address questions chosen by the student but is also informed by a critical
understanding of relevant literature. Projects of this type may be the result of an internship, casework or work
experience (current or recent past).

Business Plan:
This type of dissertation involves a fully researched, costed and complete plan for a new social or commercial
enterprise such as might justify investment against a predicted return. The expectation is that the business plan will
be backed up by rigorous analysis of primary and secondary data to establish the potential of the opportunity and
market, the competitive and market barriers, and customer demand. Your analysis should demonstrate the same
level of analytical rigour as would be found in a more standard academic dissertation. Whilst the emphasis is on

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demonstrating rigorous analysis of the value proposition, the market, competition and financial viability, there is still
an expectation that the plan will be informed by a critical review of literature relevant to the type of business model
or proposition that is being researched.

Dissertation Structures and Word Count

Length: MSc Dissertations should be approximately 15,000 words. This is a real target: a maximum of 10% margin is
allowable in either direction, but anything over that limit may result in loss of marks.

Dissertations will be different in structure, and different in the relative length of particular chapters, depending on
their type, the nature of the research question and preferences of students and advisors. The following represents a
rough guide only, and relevant sections, as well as their appropriate length, will vary substantially from dissertation
to dissertation.

The following Indicative chapter headings and word counts are only for guidance.

Traditional Research Dissertation

Indicative Chapters Indicative


Word count
Abstract 250 Overview of study, approach, broad findings and
significance.
Introduction 1,000 Subject, significance, research questions/hypotheses, and
structure.
Literature review 4,000 Critical review of relevant literature; identifying gaps or
questions in the literature; development of conceptual
framework.
Methodology 2,000 Research design and justification of methodological choices,
balance of qualitative and quantitative; data gathering
(sampling etc); data presentation and analysis; alternative
choices, limitations.
Data presentation 6,500 Description, explanation and presentation of data
Analysis and interpretation combined Application of analytical tools to the data collected;
evaluation and interpretation of what the data suggests in
relation to the research questions/hypotheses; reintegration
with general literature; theory implications.
Conclusions 1,500 Summary of answers to research questions/hypotheses,
explanation of contribution to knowledge, business
relevance, implications for policy, avenues for further
research.

Business Report

Indicative Chapters Indicative


Word count
Executive Summary 500 Overview, approach, broad findings and recommendations.
Introduction 1,000 Context for the business/market and the issue/questions to
be addressed; objectives.

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Literature review 3,000 Location of issues/questions within relevant literature,
demonstrating critical understanding and identification of
relevant conceptual frameworks/models to be used.
Method 2,000 Research design and justification of methodological choices,
balance of qualitative and quantitative; data gathering
(sampling etc); data presentation and analysis; alternative
choices, limitations.
Data presentation 8,000 Description and explanation of evidence collected.
Analysis and interpretation combined Application of analytical tools to the data collected;
evaluation and interpretation of what the data suggests in
relation to the research questions/hypotheses; reintegration
with general literature; theory implications.
Conclusions 1,500 Summary of answers to questions posed; contribution to
the business; reflection on process and learning.

Company-Sponsored Dissertation

Indicative Chapters Indicative


Word count
Executive Summary 500 Purpose of study, approach taken and brief summary of
recommendations
Introduction/ positioning 2,000 Background to the client organisation and industry/market
context; explanation and justification of the focused
problem identified by the client; industry/market context.
Literature review 2,000 Location of issues/questions within a body of literature; key
conceptual frameworks to be used.
Method 2,000 Research design and justification of methodological choices;
balance of qualitative and quantitative; review of the
data/resources the client is providing; primary data
gathering (sampling etc); alternative choices, limitations.
Data presentation 8,000 Description and explanation of evidence collected.
Analysis combined Application of analytical tools to the data collected;
evaluation and interpretation of the evidence; key findings.
Conclusions and 1,500 Summary of answers to client problem; significance for the
recommendations client; recommendations reviewed against feasibility,
acceptability and suitability for the client; prioritised
actions/next steps; reflection on consulting process.

Business Plan

Indicative Chapters Indicative


Word count
Executive Summary 1,000 Summary of business model and value proposition; broad
outline of approach taken to research the business; top line
business potential/returns
Introduction 1,000 Context, motivation and vision for the business; context of
market, industry or sector; objectives and structure of the
plan.
Literature 2,000 Review of literature relevant to how to write a business
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plan, or on the value proposition and/or the business model
underpinning the business idea or the particular market
strategy being contemplated to achieve success.
Method 1,500 Review of the secondary and primary research methods
used to demonstrate evidence for the potential for the
business

The business plan 8,500 Different business plans will focus on different aspects, and
combined the five points below are for illustration only. Other sections
may be appropriate (in addition to or as replacement to
sections below), depending on the business plan.
Value proposition for Review of the nature of the product and/or service business
the business proposed; value proposition and competitive advantage;
unique selling points; margins available (considering costs of
production/delivery and price potential).

Industry, market and Profile of key customer groups; market size, drivers and
Competition analysis growth; key competitors and relative strengths and
weaknesses; potential market entry strategies; key success
factors required.
Management plan Form of Ownership and Reasons for Choice of Ownership;
organisational team structure; experience, expertise and
roles of members of management
team; other stakeholders/advisors
Marketing and Overall marketing strategy, marketing mix, sales
operations plan management, marketing plan budget. Operations
resources and processes needed for the functioning of the
business (HR needs, physical facilities, technology,
logistics, implementation timetable.)
Financial plan and risk Discussion on how the business venture will be financed
analysis from launch and in the first three years. Financial analysis
and plans showing income, expenditure and surplus.
Detailed financial forecasts, P&L, break-even
analysis, cash flows, balance sheet. Financial what-ifs and
risk analysis (technical, marketing, operational, ethical and
financial).
Conclusions 1,000 Critical review of the business proposition and its potential,
including top line financials. Reflections on business plan
and literature.

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Included in the word count is the main body of the Dissertation, interpreted as counting from the first word which
generally falls within the Introduction and until the very last word in the final chapter.

Other inclusions/exclusions from the word count are as follows:

Component Yes No
Footnotes
Numbers in tables/diagrams
Words in tables/diagrams
Abstract X
Table of contents X
References/Bibliography X
Appendices X

MSc students in Finance, Accounting and Finance and Banking and Risk are encouraged to convert tables containing
numbers into an image. Words describing the content within the table will be included in the word count, but the
numbers in the table will not be counted as they will be in image format.

Given the amount of time it takes to prepare and write a Dissertation, students are not expected to transcribe
interviews as this can be a lengthy exercise. If students choose not to transcribe interviews, they are asked to
enclose 2 copies of the recording when submitting their project. It is a requirement that any quotations within the
project are marked up with a reference to the time at which the interview is situated within the recording.

If appendices are used, they should not be excessive, and should not be essential reading.

Citation and Referencing: The University subscribes to Cite them right Online: the essential referencing resource at
http://www.citethemrightonline.com.ezproxy.is.ed.ac.uk/ which covers the Schools recommended style, Harvard.

In addition to the print resources in the library on research methods, the University also subscribes to an online
resource, SAGE Research Methods. SAGE Research Methods supports every step of a research project, from writing
a research question, with information on the full range of qualitative, quantitative, and mixed methods.
http://srmo.sagepub.com.ezproxy.is.ed.ac.uk/

Format: Dissertations must be typed, in one-and-a-half spacing and printed on good quality white A4 paper. You
must use moderate margins and are permitted to print double-sided. The pages in the main text, appendices and
bibliography must be numbered consecutively. Font style Arial, size 11 is recommended.

Binding: 2 copies should be soft bound.

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The title page should be set-out as follows:

The University of Edinburgh


Business School

Title of Dissertation
By

EXAM NUMBER

Dissertation Presented for the Degree of


[insert Programme name]

2017/2018

Guidelines for Formatting and Handing in Assessed Work

Two paper copies of the Dissertation should be handed in to the PGT reception before the deadline of 4pm on
Thursday 23 August 2018. Students must also submit their work electronically to TURNITIN which can be located on
Learn. Please refer to the Dissertation Submission Checklist when you are submitting your Dissertation (Appendix 6).

All completed Dissertations should be clearly labelled with the students examination number. Names must NOT be
written on the documents themselves, so that they can be marked anonymously.

You must also complete the Own Work Declaration Form within ATLAS. Your work can be marked until you do this.

Late submission

See Taught Assessment Regulation 28 - https://www.ed.ac.uk/files/atoms/files/taughtassessmentregulations.pdf

Students need to submit assessed coursework (including research projects and dissertations) by the published
deadline. Where the student provides a good reason for late submission, Schools will consider accepting late
submission of up to seven calendar days without exacting a penalty.

If assessed coursework is submitted late without an agreed extension to the deadline for an accepted good reason, it
will be recorded as late and a penalty will be exacted. For coursework that is a substantial component of the course
and where the submission deadline is more than two weeks after the issue of the work to be assessed, that penalty
is a reduction of the mark by 5% of the maximum obtainable mark per calendar day (e.g. a mark of 65% on the
common marking scale would be reduced to 60% up to 24 hours later). This applies for up to seven calendar days (or
to the time when feedback is given, if this is sooner), after which a mark of zero will be given. The original unreduced
mark will be recorded by the School and the student informed of it.

Students are responsible for submitting their cases and supporting evidence in advance of the published deadline for
the coursework, using the standard Coursework Extensions Request form.

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The Course Organiser, Programme Director, or equivalent member of academic staff, decides whether the student
has provided good reason and sufficient supporting evidence to justify an extension, and, if so, determines the
length of extension to grant up to a maximum of seven calendar days.

Good reasons for coursework extensions are unexpected short-term circumstances which are exceptional for the
individual student, beyond that students control, and which could reasonably be expected to have had an adverse
impact on the students ability to complete the assessment on time. Good reasons may include:

Recent short-term physical illness or injury;


Recent short-term mental ill-health;
A long-term or chronic physical health condition, which has recently worsened temporarily or permanently;
A long-term or chronic mental health condition, which has recently worsened temporarily or permanently;
The recent bereavement or serious illness of a person with whom the student has a close relationship;
The recent breakdown in a long-term relationship, such as a marriage;
Emergencies involving dependents;
Job or internship interview at short notice that requires significant time, e.g. due to travel;
Victim of a crime which is likely to have significant emotional impact
Military conflict, natural disaster, or extreme weather conditions

The following are examples of circumstances which would not be considered good reasons for coursework
extensions:

A long-term or chronic health condition (including mental ill-health or similar ill-health) which has not
worsened recently or for which the University has already made a reasonable adjustment;
A minor short-term illness or injury (e.g. a common cold), which would not reasonably have had a significant
adverse impact on the students ability to complete the assessment on time;
Occasional low mood, stress or anxiety;
Circumstances which were foreseeable or preventable;
Holidays;
Financial issues;
Pressure of academic work (unless this contributes to ill-health);
Poor time-management;
Proximity to other assessments;
Lack of awareness of dates or times of assessment submission;
Failure, loss or theft of data, a computer or other equipment;
Commitments to paid or voluntary employment.

Extensions should only be considered to be approved when written consent is given. Verbal confirmation of an
extension should not be considered approved.

Where a student has good reason for requiring a coursework extension of more than seven calendar days, the
student should submit the coursework when able to do so and apply via the Special Circumstances process for the
Board of Examiners to disregard the penalty for late submission.

This may delay the marking of your work and your mark and recommendation for award may not be ready for
consideration at the October exam board, in which case, you would not be eligible to graduate at the winter
ceremony.

https://www.ed.ac.uk/files/atoms/files/special_circumstances.pdf
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Assessment
The grading of the Dissertation follows the Universitys Postgraduate Common Marking Scheme 4 (CMS4) and the
assessment is out of 100 per cent.
http://www.ed.ac.uk/student-administration/exams/regulations/common-marking-scheme

Examiners will be looking for a range of attributes when assessing the Dissertation, which these extended marking
schemes describe.

Grade band 30% - 39% (E) 40% - 49% (D) 50% - 59% (C) 60% - 69% (B) 70% - 79% (A1) 80% - 89%
(A2)
Attribute Marginal fail Satisfactory for Good Very good Excellent Highly
diploma performance performance performance excellent
Inadequate for performance
master
Well defined Weak Deficient Good Very good Excellent Insight and
objectives and statement of statement of understanding understanding understanding depth of
clear focus research research of purpose. of purpose. All of purpose. All objectives/foc
objectives or objectives and Research clearly stated. clearly stated. us beyond
problem/questi problem/questio problem/questi Appropriate Convincing usual
on. n. on clearly arguments. arguments. parameters.
stated. Gaps in Does not extend Suggests
the purpose beyond the additions to
and/or material the brief that
objectives. suggested. prove
extensive
insight into
the topic area.
Thorough Limited Limited Good Very good Excellent Authoritative
review and knowledge of knowledge of knowledge of knowledge of knowledge of command of
evaluation of relevant relevant relevant the literature and confident the literature
previous literature. No literature. Little literature. A with a rational engagement that goes
literature / criticism. or no criticism. critical for inclusion. with the beyond
work Significant gaps. Some framework approach, but Critical. literature. material
but with gaps, with minor gaps Appropriate Comprehensive covered in the
confused and no and omissions. framework for and critical. programme.
justification. Framework the work Fully justified Possibly,
defined, but undertaken. framework for interdisciplinar
incomplete, the work y efforts.
unclear or not undertaken
fully justified.
Methodology is Poor Methodology or Appropriate Appropriate and Excellent Excellent
appropriate to methodology. research methodology or clearly outlined methodoloigy methodology
research focus No clearly approach not research methodology or with clear and that may
structured clearly argued or approach. research rational extend course
analytical signalled. approach. justification for references
framework. inclusion. and propose
adaptations to
recognised
methodologies

15
Grade band 30% - 39% (E) 40% - 49% (D) 50% - 59% (C) 60% - 69% (B) 70% - 79% (A1) 80% - 89%
(A2)
Attribute Marginal fail Satisfactory for Good Very good Excellent Highly
diploma performance performance performance excellent
Inadequate for performance
master

Adequate Poor Methodology or Appropriate Appropriate and Excellent Excellent


discussion of methodology. research methodology or clearly outlined methodology methodology
methods No clearly approach not research methodology or with clear and that may
adopted structured clearly argued or approach. research rational extend course
(including analytical signalled. approach. justification for references
rationale and framework. inclusion. and propose
limitations) adaptations to
recognised
methodologies
Rigorous and Information of Some attempt at The analysis A confident and Excellent Authoritative
appropriate little or no analysis. Some supports comprehensive analysis with analysis that
analysis of relevance to the information research analysis, but exploration of demonstrates
research study. remains objectives. conventional. counter fluent
findings unprocessed. Limited but arguments. command of
sufficient the subject.
number of
references.
Conclusions / Weak, flawed, Incomplete Clear findings Confident and Excellent and Excellent and
recommendatio or incomplete argument not and conclusions comprehensive critical critical
ns follow on conclusions. linked to covering key conclusions conclusions that conclusions
from findings research research clearly stated evaluate results presented to a
objectives. objectives of the with some with exploration high standard.
Conclusions not study with some critical of counter In-depth
fully supported justification. evaluation. arguments. exploration
by the research. demonstrating
enquiry
beyond
disciplinary
boundaries.

Thoughtful Some personal Personal position Personal Personal Personal Sustained,


engagement position stated. stated, but position position position fluent and
with literature No reflection. lacking evidence supported by supported by supported by authoritative
and findings and/or relevant comprehensive critical academic argument
connection with academic academic referencing. deeply
academic referencing, referencing. Argument engaged with
literature. incomplete presented with contemporary
argument. flair and research.
imagination.

16
Grade band 30% - 39% (E) 40% - 49% (D) 50% - 59% (C) 60% - 69% (B) 70% - 79% (A1) 80% - 89%
(A2)

Attribute Marginal fail Satisfactory for Good Very good Excellent Highly
diploma performance performance performance excellent
Inadequate for performance
master

Contribution to Little or no Some Contribution to Contribution to Contribution to Authoritative


knowledge is contribution to contribution to knowledge knowledge knowledge contribution
clear (includes knowledge. knowledge, but present, with confidently critically linked to knowledge
quality of not clearly some links to linked to the to the research demonstrating
argument) connected to the the research research objectives with enquiry
research objectives. objectives. exploration of beyond
objectives. counter disciplinary
arguments. boundaries.
Dissertation is No clear Contains a Clear structure Clear structure Confident Fluent and
clearly structure. structure, but with some with some presentation authoritative
structured still needs some problems. minor problems. rationally structure,
work. structured. succinct and
effective.
Dissertation is Very weak The presentation The work is The The work is The work is
presented to a presentation, still need more presented presentation is clear and easy elegant and
clear and messy. work. reasonably well clear with minor to read. concise.
professional but has some inconsistencies
standard problems. affecting
readability.
Non-original Large scale References not Almost all of the All work is All work All work
work is omissions of always made or work is clearly referenced with referenced referenced
adequately references. inconsistent. referenced and a few errors in properly and the properly.
referenced there may be the bibliography is Bibliography
some problems bibliography. correct. and
with the referencing
bibliography. meet
academic
publishing
standards.
It is clear which No distinction Some claims on A distinction A distinction is A clear A clear
parts of the between what is the between the made between distinction distinction
work are the students own students own work of the the students between the between the
student's own work and the work, but no student and work and that of work of the work of the
results of clear attribution others with, but others. student and student and
others. to the results of some lack of others. Where others.
others. clarity. appropriate the Insightful
discussion is connections
broken into between
separate parts. original and
non-original
work.
17
Overall Extended Dissertation Marking Criteria

The traditional research dissertation marking criteria are extended in the table below to include reference to the
standards expected on the additional differentiating features for the three additional dissertations formats: Business
Report, Company Sponsored Dissertation (Consultancy Project) and Business Plan.

90-100%: Fulfils all criteria for 80-89%. In addition, work has exceptional insight and independent thought, and of
publishable quality. Could change conventional understanding of the topic. At this level a business report would
fulfil all criteria for 80-89% but would demonstrate exceptional insight and objectivity in the analysis of business
practice and highly convincing recommendations that have been critically evaluated. A consultancy report at this
level would provide convincing evidence for client improvement as well as insightful and critical reflection on the
theory and practice of the consulting process. A business plan at this level would demonstrate highly convincing
evidence of potential returns and be of a quality that could be presented to a potential investor with no
amendments.
80-89%: Fulfils all criteria for 70-79%. Outstanding work that demonstrates insight and depth of analysis beyond
usual parameters. Sustained, fluent and authoritative argument. Comprehensive knowledge and convincing
command of the topic. Accurate and concise use of sources. At this level a business report would fulfil all criteria for
70-79% but would demonstrate a superior level of insight and convincing recommendations. A consultancy report at
this level would provide convincing evidence for client improvement and clear personal learning with appropriate
links made to relevant consulting theory. A business plan at this level would demonstrate highly convincing evidence
of potential returns and be of a quality that could be presented to a potential investor with only minor amendments.
70-79%: Focused, clear and well-structured work. Effectively and convincingly argued. Critical understanding of
conflicting theories and evidence. Excellent presentation and referencing. At this level a business report would also
demonstrate comprehensive insight and objectivity in the analysis of the business, and clear recommendations that
would bring immediate performance improvement. A consultancy report would also demonstrate clear evidence of
the potential for significant performance improvement for the client organisation and also personal learning from
the consulting process. A business plan at this level would be comprehensive in coverage of all key business
components and provide a complete and thorough financial analysis but also demonstrate highly convincing
evidence of potential returns and be of a quality that could be presented to a potential investor with some
amendments.
60-69%: Substantial knowledge and understanding of concepts, theories and evidence relating to the topic. Answers
the question fully. No significant errors of fact or interpretation. Good presentation and referencing. At this level, a
business report would also demonstrate clear understanding of the business practices researched and an
appropriate and sound set of clear recommendations for business improvement. A consultancy report would
provide sound recommendations with the potential for implementation, and evidence of learning from the
consulting process. A business plan would be complete in its coverage of the key business components and provide
a sound and complete set of financial accounts and projections.
50-59%: Accurate knowledge of topic. Satisfactory interpretation and uses of sources and evidence. Some gaps in
knowledge, or limited use of evidence. Overly descriptive. Possible confusion or lack of clarity. Writing,
referencing and presentation satisfactory. At this level a business report will show understanding of business
practices observed/experienced but may have gaps in coverage or provide only superficial evidence to support
points being made. At this level a consultancy report may be light on recommendations, or with some gaps, and may
not provide convincing evidence to support points being made. A business plan may have gaps in the components
covered, with some flaws or gaps also in the financial analysis and statements provided.
40-49%: Diploma-level performance. Some knowledge of the topic, and use of relevant sources. Likely to have
significant deficiencies in argument, evidence or use of literature. Likely to contain factual errors. May fail to
answer the question. Writing, referencing and presentation may be weak.
30-39%: Fail. Flawed understanding of topic. Poor awareness of theory. Poor approach. Poor coverage of the topic.
Writing, referencing and presentation likely to be very weak.
20-29%: Fail. Seriously inadequate knowledge of the subject. Little awareness of relevant issues or theory. Major

18
omissions and inaccuracies.
10-19%: Fail. Short, unclear, factually inaccurate. Lack of understanding of key reading and relevant academic
concepts or frameworks.
0-9%: Fail. No academic merit. No indication that the course has been followed.

Your dissertation will be marked independently by two examiners, one of which is typically your dissertation advisor.
They will then agree, via a reconciliation process, a final mark. In certain cases, a third marker may be required to
reach a final decision on the mark. Finally, an external examiner will examine a sample of all dissertations, to
determine if marking has been consistent across the programme.

Feedback
Dissertation formative feedback will be provided by the dissertation advisor during your dissertation work.
Dissertation summative feedback will take the form of a final mark out of 100 per cent and of an individual feedback
summary.

The final mark for the Dissertation will be available via MyEd after the final Board of Examiners in October.
https://www.ed.ac.uk/student-systems/support-guidance/students/student-self-service-channel
Feedback summary on the Dissertation will be available online via ATLAS, usually by the end of October.

Statement of Ethics
Research undertaken for the Dissertation is governed by the ethical guidelines as set down in the University of
Edinburgh Business Schools Research Ethics Guidelines, which are available on Learn.

All PGT students are required to submit a research ethics form to ATLAS before Friday 29th June 2018. Research
Ethics must be discussed at the first meeting with Advisors.

Business School Assistance with Research


Due to the large number of students involved in Dissertation, the Business School cannot assist individual students
who are seeking help with their data collection. This extends to the Business School facilitating surveys of
undergraduate or postgraduate students studying at the University of Edinburgh or elsewhere, the provision of
travel or other sources of support for fieldwork, guaranteed access to databases, or other sources of data and
information.

Employment
Postgraduate Taught degrees are designed to be a demanding full-time programme of study and students are
registered on the programmes as being in Full-Time study. You may compromise your performance if you undertake
part-time employment. In practice very few of our students have part-time jobs of more than a few hours a week. It
is possible to undertake an internship during the summer months, but you will be expected to write a Dissertation at
the same time. Please check your visa regulations prior to working within the United Kingdom and seek guidance
from Edinburgh Global http://global.ed.ac.uk/

19
Plagiarism and Academic Misconduct
Plagiarism is the act of copying or including in ones own work, without adequate acknowledgement, intentionally or
unintentionally, the work of another or your own previously assessed original work. The University takes plagiarism
very seriously and is committed to ensuring that so far as possible it is detected and dealt with appropriately.

The full text of the Universitys policy on plagiarism and the guidance it contains can be found on the Universitys
website at:

http://www.ed.ac.uk/academic-services/students/conduct/academic-misconduct/plagiarism

The University takes all reported incidences of academic misconduct seriously and seeks to ensure that they are
dealt with efficiently and appropriately.

https://www.ed.ac.uk/academic-services/students/conduct/academic-misconduct

Freedom of Information Act


The Universitys student records retention schedule states that material which contributes to the final assessment of
the degree, including Dissertations, should be retained in the School for a Minimum 40 days after the Board of
Examiners meeting which decides the overall classification or award of the degree, after which it will be destroyed.
You will then be the only holder of the Dissertation.

However, if the work has value for teaching or its contribution to knowledge, schools or subject groups may decide
to retain it in house or transfer it to the Library.

Dissertations that are non-confidential and obtain marks of 65% and above are, with students permission, retained
by the Business School for 10 years and made available online to other students. The top 5 dissertations each year
from each programme will also be made available in hard copy for 3 years in the Hub. With the Freedom of
Information Act (Scotland) 2002, these Dissertations are also made available to the wider public on request.

Please refer to Taught Assessment Regulation 49 Retention and destruction of material

http://www.ed.ac.uk/files/atoms/files/taughtassessmentregulations.pdf

http://www.ed.ac.uk/records-management/records-management/staff-guidance/retention-schedules/student-
records

The Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 requires the University to make available to any enquirer any
information held by the University (unless one of the legislations narrowly defined exemptions applies), this
requirement will apply to copies of undergraduate and postgraduate Dissertations held by the University.
Exemptions that might apply to Dissertations include:

Information provided in confidence (most likely to apply to situations where individuals were interviewed in
confidence and are quoted in the Dissertation)
Substantial prejudice to commercial interests (most likely to apply where the author includes information about
commercial companies not already in the public domain)
Research in progress (most likely to apply where the Dissertation includes information about recent research
findings which have not yet been published but where an intention exists to publish them)

20
Each exemption must be applied on a case-by-case basis so it is not possible to take a blanket decision as to whether
or not Dissertations would qualify for an exemption. In most cases it would be likely that we would have to release a
Dissertation to an enquirer as the scope of the exemptions is narrowly defined and often includes an assessment of
the public interest in releasing the information.

It is conceivable that an exemption will apply to only part of a Dissertation. In these cases, the University would be
expected to withhold the exempt portions of the Dissertation but to release the remainder.

http://www.ed.ac.uk/schools-departments/records-management-section/freedom-of-information/guidance-
policies/Dissertations

Appeals
Students have the right of appeal against the decisions of Board of Examiners on very specific grounds, which are set
out in the Universitys Appeal Regulations:
http://www.ed.ac.uk/academic-services/students/appeals

Updating Student Personal Information


Once you have submitted your Dissertation, it is very important that you update your contact details on MyEd so
that Student Administration can correspond with you about graduation. You also must confirm your personal details
with the Business School Alumni Team by submitting a contact information form (see appendix 3) once you have
submitted your dissertation.

Key Contacts and Consultation


If you are having any difficulties whilst completing your Dissertation, in the first instance, please consult your
Programme Administrator in the Postgraduate Office who can advise you on administration, support and policy
regarding Dissertations or can direct you to the most suitable person to assist you.
https://www.business-school.ed.ac.uk/about/groups/135/postgraduate-support-team

Students are always encouraged to raise any concerns of an academic nature with their relevant Advisor, Personal
Tutor or Programme Director.

In the event that your Advisor/Personal Tutor/Programme Director cannot be contacted, please let your Programme
Administrator in the Postgraduate Office know; they can assist you in making contact.

21
APPENDIX 1: Dissertation Support System (DSS)

You will need to Provide on the DSS system

Proposal working title


A proposal summary - What are your research questions? How does your study relate to existing theories
and concepts? - What data sources do you plan to use? (100 to 300 words)
What is your Dissertation format -Traditional Research Dissertation, Company Sponsored Dissertation,
Business Report or Business Plan.
What methodology you intend to use Qualitative, Quantitative or Mixed.
Full references for up to 5 key books/articles used to develop this proposal
What methods of analysis/analysis software do you plan to use
What subject / discipline group you wish your advisor to be drawn from
Option to select a particular member of staff you would like to nominate as a preferred advisor

Please note: On average staff will advise up to 10 students across the undergraduate and postgraduate
programmes. Not all members of staff will be available as advisors, due to study leave or other
commitments. Requests for advisors can ONLY be made, and accepted, via the DSS system. Heads of Subject
Groups confirm the final allocation of dissertation advisors, therefore you may not be allocated your first
choice of dissertation advisor.

The DSS will go LIVE at 10.00 a.m. on Monday 12th March 2018 and will CLOSE to proposals on Monday 19th March
2018 at 9.00 a.m. You have ONE WEEK to upload your proposal. The matching process will begin on 19th March and
we will inform students of the outcome on Monday 16th April 2018 via the DSS.

If your proposal has not been selected by your nominated member of staff we will match you with another advisor
from within the chosen subject group/area, or another member of staff internal or external - who can advise.

22
APPENDIX 2: PGT Dissertation Leave Request

My details:

Name:

Matriculation Number:

Programme:

Contact Number whilst away:

Dates of proposed leave: Start End

I seek leave of absence in order to (tick as appropriate)


Prepare my Dissertation (Go to Section A)
Undertake an internship (Go to Section B)
Undertake additional voluntary study (Go to section C)
Other activity (Go to Section D)

Everybody must fill in Section E.

Section A: Those seeking leave to prepare their Dissertation

While on leave of absence, my work for the above will mainly be to (tick one):
Collect data and information from a collection of individuals, companies or other organisations
Collect data and information during a period of time at one specific company or organisation
Review literature
My work for the above will be undertaken in the following city/country (mention, if several):

When seeking leave of absence to prepare my Dissertation, I understand that I must:


have firm arrangements in place regarding appropriate Advisor/supervision at both the Edinburgh and the
remote-from-Edinburgh site, and
have the plan of work agreed between the degree Programme Director, the Edinburgh Advisor and the place at
which the work will take place, and that this plan will deliver information suitable for the preparation of a
Dissertation to masters standards, and
have established to the satisfaction of the Edinburgh Advisor and the Programme Director that the remote site
has the resources available for the work planned, and that the work can be completed within the given time
scale, and
have in place points of contact at the remote site such as to allow adequate pastoral care and oversight of my
work, and
have established effective links between myself and my Advisor at Edinburgh, which must be regularly used and
that use recorded on file, and
23
have established the means to have their progress regularly updated, and the use of these means monitored,
and
have suitable arrangements made for the analysis and reporting of the work, and
have agreed to be available to return to Edinburgh if required so to do by the Programme Director.

(Signatures required overleaf)

I confirm that I have discussed the above with my Advisor and agree to comply with the conditions.

Students Signature:

Date (insert)

I confirm that I have discussed the students proposal and believe they have satisfied the necessary criteria above.

Advisors Signature:

Section B: Those seeking leave to undertake an internship

Company/Organisation:

City/Country:

Main Contact Person:

Contact Persons email and telephone:

My internship was secured with help from the School through (tick as appropriate):
Contacts provided by the School after which I agreed terms myself
Attending an event at the School after which I secured an internship myself
Internship advertised by the School (via email, through a staff member or on the Student Opportunities Board)
My internship was secured through other means (please give details)

Section C: Those seeking leave to undertake voluntary study

University/School:

City/Country:

Main Contact Person:

Contact Persons email and telephone:

Date

24
Section D: Those undertaking an activity not covered in Section A-C
Provide a short summary of the activity below including details of the purpose, location and point of contact.

Section E: To be completed by all.


I declare that I have:
- Consulted the Universitys Business Travel website.
http://www.ed.ac.uk/staff-students/staff/business-travel (aimed at staff but also relevant for students)
- Consulted Safety and Health whilst Travelling on University Business and taken appropriate measures.
http://www.docs.csg.ed.ac.uk/Safety/general/travelling_abroad.pdf
- Taken out appropriate insurance cover, liaising with the University Insurance office if required.
https://www.wiki.ed.ac.uk/display/Finance/Insurance+Department
- Submitted with this form a copy of my travel itinerary and contact information for the duration of the leave
period.

I understand and agree to comply with the conditions.

Students Signature:

Date

Confirmation in support of this request

Programme Directors
Signature:

Date

PLEASE SUBMIT THIS FORM TO THE PGT SUPPORT OFFICE TO PROCESS.

25
APPENDIX 3: Contact Information
Please email this form back to the Alumni Office alumni@business-school.ed.ac.uk

Name:

Programme:

Home address: Work address:

Personal email: Work email:

Home telephone: Work telephone:


Mobile:

Employment Status: (please tick appropriate box)


In permanent job Still actively seeking work
In temporary job Not actively seeking work
In further education

If you are in permanent/temporary work or continuing education, please complete the appropriate section below:

Company name and location of job: or institution name if in further education:

Job title (example Fixed Income Analyst): Programme title:

Industry: Dates:

Description of job responsibilities: (example Description of study:


Analysing credit default swap pricing and risk) (example PhD research topic)

26
APPENDIX 4: End of Programme Mini-Survey 2017-18
Please hand in with your Dissertation/Capstone Project
My programme:
MSc Accounting and Finance MSc Human Resource Management
MSc Banking & Risk MSc International Business & Emerging Markets
MSc Business Analytics MSc International Human Resource Management
MSc Carbon Finance MSc Management
MSc Entrepreneurship & Innovation MSc Marketing
MSc Finance MSc Marketing & Business Analysis

Please rate the Programme as a whole: On a scale of 1 to 10, (with 10 being very likely and 1
being highly unlikely), how likely are you to
recommend the Programme (please circle)?

Excellent
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
Above average
Average
Below average
Poor

Please rate the support provided by the PGT How useful have the Student Development Team been
Support Team in preparing you for the jobs market?

Excellent Very useful


Above average Useful
Average
Somewhat useful
Below average Not very useful
Poor Not at all useful

Please provide feedback on your Dissertation Advisor

Is there anything else you want to tell us about the programme and/or PGT Support Team?

Is there anything else you want to tell us about the Student Development Team?

27
APPENDIX 5: Working with Companies
If you are working with a company as part of your dissertation, best practice recommends completing a Memoranda
of Understanding in order to establish expectations and ground rules. In addition, if you are interviewing staff or
having access to their records or data, it is important to ascertain whether this information is confidential and to
agree how it will be represented in the final dissertation.

The Student Development team can advise you on any challenges you may encounter when working with a
company.

Company Sponsored Dissertation Workshop


To support students undertaking a company sponsored dissertation, the Student Development team will run three
workshops. The first on 7th March 2018 will provide information on best practice in relation to scoping the project
with your client and agreeing key parameters such as communication methods, project scope and access to data.
The second (date tbc) looks at Business Etiquette and client communications and is recommended for those with
limited working experience in the UK. The third on 23rd May will focus on client communication and managing
multiple stakeholders.

Memoranda of Understanding
This is a document that we ask all students working with a company to complete, with input from their client, and to
be signed by themselves, the client and the academic advisor. This is to help ensure that the proposed project is
realistic and will meet the requirements for a dissertation as well as for the organisation.

The main purpose is to help scope the project, and to ensure that the student, client and advisor are clear about
their expectations. It is not a legal document.

Students are asked to complete the MoU and submit it to student.development@business-school.ed.ac.uk or in


person to GF03 by the 31st May 2018. A copy of the MoU is available from the Student Development Team and
discussed during the March workshop.

Confidentiality Agreement (in conjunction with ERI)


Companies and other organisations are rightly very sensitive about who has access to their data and when working
with such an organisation you must maintain confidentiality, during and after the interaction, of the any data and
information, where such information is not already within the public domain and is indicated or understood to be
confidential. It is best practice to formalise this through a Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA).

The Business School has a template appropriate for students working with external companies that wed encourage
you to use. To request an NDA, please email student.development@business-school.ed.ac.uk providing the following
information:
Full name and full postal address of company
Contact name and email address of organisation representative
Company registration number (found on Company House register website)
UUN
Name of University Academic Advisor

Bear in mind establishing an NDA can take time so discuss the requirements early on in the collaboration.

28
APPENDIX 6: Dissertation Submission Checklist
Submitted two hard copies of your Dissertation

Completed the Own Work Declaration Form in ATLAS

Submitted electronic copy of dissertation to TurnItIn

Submitted two copies of interview transcripts (if applicable)

Returned Proximity card (if applicable)

Ensured personal details and contact information are correct on MyEd

Emailed the contact details form to alumni@business-school.ed.ac.uk

Submitted your End of Programme survey

29