Bachelor Thesis @ SMT
Who can write a bachelor thesis with us?
Students of the Marketing SBWLs*
Students of other SBWLs
Students of the BBE Program
*Priority is given to the students of the SBWL “Service and Digital Marketing”
We offer the opportunity to write a thesis to every student with a specialization (SBWL) in marketing and to students of the Bachelor program in Business and Economics (BBE) program. However, because of our expertise, research and teaching interest in specific topics as well as to ensure adequate supervision it is preferable if the students are enrolled in the Service and Digital Marketing SBWL. Other students are welcome if they provide good reasons (e.g., a quantitative research methods background, interest in service marketing, job relevance, …) to write their thesis with us despite being enrolled in different programs.
Please note that due to the high number of applications, with demand exceeding our capacity, we cannot guarantee thesis supervision and we need to reserve the right to select students based on relevant selection criteria, such as grades in relevant courses, prior relevant research and/or practical experience, as well as the degree of fit with the requirements for a given topic. Because of this, we prioritize students successfully passing our SBWL, ideally with excellent or good grades. We also expect students to be familiar with the general rules of writing a scientific paper as, for example, covered by the WU-course “Grundlagen des wissenschaftlichen Arbeitens” (GWA), ideally be taught by the marketing department.
Once accepted for supervision, you will have the opportunity to work on contemporary marketing topics with practical relevance. We have a strong empirical research tradition with a distinct focus on quantitative research methods and typically employ advanced management and marketing science methods to provide decision support for issues of managerial relevance. We seek timely topics to ensure practical relevance that would help our students in their future careers. We are involved in areas such as customer relationship management, service quality and customer satisfaction, e-services and tourism, and of course general marketing science methods. For more information please visit our research page. Our interdisciplinary team will be happy to provide you with help and guidance.
Before starting your application, make sure to read the Marketing Department Bachelor’s thesis guidelines:
as well as the general guidelines:
These provide an initial overview of what to prepare and what to expect from the thesis writing process.
Please note that the BBE students need to follow a special procedure, as indicated in their Thesis Guidelines.
Choosing your Topic and Supervisor
If you are interested in writing a bachelor’s thesis with our institute and fulfill the formal criteria indicated in the guidelines, your first steps are finding a topic and contacting a supervisor. Generally, in choosing your topic, there are two options:
Choosing a topic offered by our team. While our team members are generally happy to be approached with your novel ideas and topics, to assure that they can provide adequate guidance, there are several preferred topics offered by each team member listed on this webpage. Usually, these are the topics our team members are currently investigating in their own research projects and thus assure high involvement by the supervisor and optimal supervision conditions.
Choosing your own topic of interest. As we take the supervisions seriously, you will be asked to explicitly state how does this topic relates to our current research and teaching content. A potential supervisor will then decide based on her/his current capacities and fit to the area of expertise.
Along with the choice of your topic, you will be asked to send the following documents:
Your up-to-date CV
Your most recent grade transcript
A short (2-3 pages) exposé about your motivations/interest in the chosen topic
The supervisor will give you a feedback shortly and if the response is positive, you will be invited to a personal interview where the topic will be discussed more in depth. After that, you will have one week to make the final decision.
Writing the Proposal
Once you have established the contact with your supervisor and agreed on cooperation, you will be asked to write a thesis proposal. The purpose of the thesis proposal is to assess your ability to conduct research independently.
Your proposal should be 3-4 pages long (i.e. excluding the literature review, figures, tables, images, etc.) and should highlight the main points of your thesis and serve as a guideline to both you and your supervisor. It also helps with the assessment of time management of your topic.
Among other things, the thesis proposal should encompass the following points:
The (working) title of your thesis
Motivation, theoretical background and practical relevance of the thesis
Introduction to the problem and the research gap
A rough overview of the relevant literature, hypotheses (if applicable), and already available research results which can serve as a foundation to your thesis
Suggested research methods to answer the research questions
If applicable, a short introduction of your thesis partner (e.g. the company that provides the data or helps with the experiment)
An expected time roadmap of your thesis
Writing the Thesis
Depending on your supervisor’s requirements, you might be asked to sign a Supervision Agreement,which is valid for the duration of the writing of your thesis (max. 6 months) from the first contact with your supervisor.
While writing your thesis, you will be expected to stay in touch with your supervisor. Be proactive and report to your supervisor at least every 2 or 3 weeks, however, do not expect the supervisor to be readily available anytime you need her/him. A rule of thumb is the minimum of four meetings, particularly in the critical phases such as establishing of the components of the research design (e.g., designing the survey questionnaire).
The completion of a bachelor’s thesis is expected to take approximately 200 workhours, which translates to ca. 25 full-time workdays. Do not postpone writing your thesis. Plan ahead, make frequent backups and be responsible – a crashed computer is not a valid excuse for extension of your deadline.
Adhering to the formatting and writing guidelines, as well as to your supervisor’s instructions, will greatly help to optimize your writing efficiency.
Thesis Submission and Grading
The submission of your thesis is done via an upload of your thesis to the Learn@WU as well as via e-mail to your supervisor. In addition, you will be asked to provide a presentation of your results, as well as the raw data to your supervisor per e-mail to understand your steps taken. Transparency of your analyses must be assured (e.g., by providing the code used).
After submission, your thesis will be checked for plagiarism.
In general, we will review your thesis as quickly as possible and will inform you about the results immediately. However, in case you need a grade by a specific date, you should still count with 4 weeks after submitting your thesis (i.e. uploading to Learn@WU) for us to review the thesis. In addition, please take into consideration that the Examinations Office (Prüfungsabteilung) will need some additional time to issue your certificate. You will be informed about your grade and in case it has not happened already, you will make an appointment with your supervisor to assess your thesis and receive the feedback.
Links and Downloads
In case of any general questions, please contact