Research Paper and Thesis Guidelines

The Research Paper

Graduate students enrolled in a coursework or research project stream in their home department are expected to write a research paper as part of their collaborative program requirements. The research paper must be on an environment related topic and must be supervised by a faculty member from the home department who is a member of the graduate faculty of School of the Environment (see the School’s faculty listing for current members). Students whose faculty supervisors are not appointed to the School of the Environment should contact the graduate coordinator.

On a case-by-case basis, students who cannot find a research supervisor from his/her home unit, with express permission from the student's home department, may be supervised by a professor from the School of the Environment or other participating graduate degree granting unit. 

The length, style and format of the research paper are within the discretion of the home department supervisor. The School of the Environment, however, recommends that the research paper be 20-30 pages in length. Types of research papers include:

a) a research paper based on an internship experience;
b) a literature review in an area related to the field of research; and
c) a primary research paper based on an area of interest.

Please note, that if your home department does not have an established research paper code designator, you must use the School’s code ENV 5555Y when registering on ROSI. A final copy of the research paper must be submitted to the Graduate Office of the School of the Environment along with an email from your supervisor confirming that your paper has been graded (P/F) and approved.

The Thesis

Collaborative students are required to write (and if applicable, defend) an environmentally relevant research thesis of acceptable quality. Thesis research should be supervised by one or more faculty members from the home department, at least one of whom is a graduate faculty member of the School of the Environment. A bound or CD copy of the final approved thesis must be submitted to the School of the Environment Graduate Studies Office prior to convocation.