The master thesis is an academic paper which demonstrates our students' ability to independently cover a topic and answer specific research questions using academic methods. In addition to meeting academic standards, students have to demonstrate their ability to translate the knowledge they have acquired in the course of the program to real-world marketing decision problems.
The master thesis is required to be empirical. Thus, students will make use of primary (e.g., survey or experimental) and/or secondary data, employ quantitative and/or qualitative methods to analyze the acquired datasets, or extensively work on case studies using real-world data sets. While original empirical research is expected to be the norm for master theses, in very rare cases conceptual work (such as theoretical syntheses, novel theories, or analytical models of previously unexplored phenonema) might be accepted as well. However, required efforts and expectations from students working exclusively on conceptual papers are typically much higher than in the case of empirical research.
In order to finish the program within two years, we strongly recommend to meet the following timeli
|During the 2nd semester|
|Start looking for a topic suggested by a faculty member or start thinking about your topic and looking for a supervisor for this topic. In particular students who study abroad in their 3rd semester should get in touch with a potential supervisor as early as possible!|
|By the end of the 2nd semester|
|Choice of topic or research question in agreement with thesis supervisor|
|By the end of of September of 2nd semester|
|Submission of abstract; students doing an exchange semester have to start writing the abstract early, ideally in summer|
|Right after Christmas break of 3rd semester |
|First presentation of master's thesis project|
|By the end of June of 4th semester |
|Presentation and submission of final version of master's thesis|
|Mid-October after 4th semester||Graduation Ceremony of your MSc Marketing Class|
In addition to the regulations applicable to master's thesis in all master programs at WU, individual agreements between the student and the thesis supervisor apply.
Writing your Master Thesis
You are responsible for choosing a topic in agreement with your thesis supervisor. Here are the links to the various topic areas covered by the institutes of the Department of Marketing (if no specific thesis topics are posted, please check the research interests of the individual faculty members):
Institute for International Marketing Management (Prof. Schlegelmilch)
Institute for Marketing & Consumer Research (Prof. Kamleitner)
Institute for Marketing-Management (Prof. Schreier)
Institute for Retailing & Marketing (Prof. Wlömert)
Institute for Service Marketing & Tourism (Prof. Reutterer)
Institute for Interactive Marketing & Social Media (Prof. Abou Nabout)
We encourage our students to work on their master theses in cooperation with a local, national or international company. In doing so, they may also benefit from our faculty's connections to the business world.
When working together with business partners, please respect the following note of caution: The process of supervising master theses at the Department of Marketing involves numerous interactions with multiple faculty members and peers. In addition, students are required to present and discuss their findings by the end of the fourth semester. While it will be possible to disguise some of the most sensitive and/or internal information, complete concealment of your original research will not be feasible. Thus, when working together with companies, please make sure before the start of your thesis that all parties involved are fully aware of the fact that the thesis will be exposed to everyone involved in the master in Marketing.
Master Thesis Project Opportunities through an Internship
Enabling our students to apply what they study to real-world contexts is the ultimate goal of our teaching concept. This is realized through the project work and experiential learning elements incorporated in the curriculum. In addition, we encourage our students to put their first year learning experience into practice by undertaking an internship during the summer break.
Internships are a fantastic opportunity to put your knowledge into practice and to reveal your own capabilities and goals. Furthermore, they allow you to explore opportunities of conducting a Master Thesis Project in cooperation with an industry partner. Completion of an internship is not mandatory, but highly recommended for students who wish to qualify for marketing specialist and/or executive functions in the industry.
The majority of students arrange their internship through applications via the local job markets or WU's Career Center (ZBP). Others use personal contacts or our faculty members' wide network of students, alumni and industry contacts.