- Module: Bachelor Thesis and Seminar Computer Science (CA-CS-800)
- Semester: Spring 2023
- Instructor: Amr Alanwar
- Instructor: Peter Baumann
- Instructor: Andreas Birk
- Instructor: Mathias Bode
- Instructor: Francesco Maurelli
- Instructor: Jürgen Schönwälder
- Instructor: Peter Zaspel
- Prerequisites: 30 CP of advanced modules earned, at least 20 CP from modules in the major
|Kickoff meeting||2023-02-06 (Monday)|
|Topic/supervisor selection||2023-02-14 (Tuesday)|
|Thesis submission||2023-05-16 (Tuesday)|
We expect that our students take the initiative and drive the process. How self-organized students work is part of the assessment. In terms of effort, please note that 1 CP equals ~25 hours, i.e., the module has an average workload of 375 hours.
Doing research in computer science usually starts with a lot of reading and learning. In order to do research that is significant, it is crucial to pick a tractable topic and it is essential to understand the state of the art as well as any algorithms and tools that are relevant. While the details differ depending on the area of computer science, reading about the state of the art is essential for all of them. To find relevant literature, it is good to be aware of systems such as:
- ACM Digital Library (digital library provided by the ACM)
- IEEE Xplore (digital library provided by the IEEE)
- IFIP Digital Library (digital library provided by the IFIP)
- Scopus (commercial research publication indexing system)
- dblp (open computer science publication indexing system)
- Semantic Scholar (academic search engine by the Allen Institute of AI)
The first phase is essentially a deep dive into the state of the art of your topic. During this phase, you should pick up and deepen the necessary knowledge, you should develop a good understanding of the state of the art, and you should get familiar with any programs or tools or datasets that are essential for carrying out a little research project during the bachelor thesis course.
LaTeX is widely used as the typesetting system for research papers in computer science. Hence, we expect that project and thesis reports are written in LaTeX. Below are some LaTeX templates that you are expected to use for typesetting the project report and later the thesis. Please do not change or improve the format, it is usually far better to spend your brain cycles on the content instead of the format (and we really appreciate a common format).
- Justin Zobel: Writing for Computer Science, Springer, 3rd edition, 2015
- Writing a Bachelor Thesis in Computer Science
- Repeatability in computer systems research
- Benchmarking Crimes: An Emerging Threat in Systems Security
Research Groups and Topics
The following links are pointers to some of the research groups providing thesis topics. You will find the topics on the respective research group pages.
Experience has shown that it is crucial to start work on the bachelor thesis topic as soon as possible. It may be very useful to use time during the intersession, in particular if still a number of credits need to be earned during the last semester. Starting work on the bachelor thesis end of April clearly is too late to achieve good results and in particular to deal with any unforseen problems.
The bachelor thesis should have (according to the handbook) a length of approx. 6000-8000 words excluding front and back matter. It must be submitted electronically via Moodle and will go through Turnitin (a plagiarism checker). The submission deadline is a hard deadline. Failure to submit the thesis in time will lead to an incomplete course grade or to a fail. Faculty will ensure that a bachelor thesis submitted by the deadline will be graded by the grade submission deadline for graduating students. Note that faculty availability for thesis supervision during the summer break may be limited.
The grade of the bachelor thesis will be determined using the following criteria:
Technical Work (weight 60%)
- understanding of the subject
- technical correctness
- completeness (topic fully addressed)
- originality and independence
- work organization (sustained work pace, regular progress reporting)
Writing and Thesis (weight 40%)
- proper and concise abstract
- "research" questions clearly formulated and motivated
- survey of the state of the art
- clear methodology (e.g., experiment design, algorithm design…)
- presentation and interpretation of results
- reflection about limitations of the work
- proper references and citations
- proper scientific writing
Bachelor Thesis Seminar
The Bachelor Thesis Seminar includes the final thesis presentations. The presentations are 15 minutes + 5 minutes discussion. The schedule has 20 minutes for each presentation, hence it is important to be efficient with changing laptops (make sure you have tested all necessary equipment before the actual presentation time). We have scheduled breaks to recover our minds and to makeup any schedule quirks should they arise (we hope not). Presentations are graded using the following criteria:
- clarity of the slides
- clarity of the presentation
- motivation and flow of the presentation
- technical clarity (proper use of notations etc., demo where feasible)
- technical contribution and originality
- time management
- answers to questions
Time slots are assigned on a first-come-first-served basis.