Dissertation by Portfolio - An alternative to the traditional thesis

Paul Crowther


Both the absolute numbers and proportion of international students in the student cohorts of postgradute computing and engineering courses rose dramatically between 2005 and 2009. One of the hardest tasks these students have to perform is the production of a dissertation in English. This paper will concentrate on experiences with students studying computing masters level courses.

This paper asks the question whether we are assessing a students skills with academic English or their ability to meet the learning outcomes of the dissertation module. It will present an alternative to the traditional written dissertation in the form of a portfolio model which is applicable in highly technical research projects.


Computing, Masters dissertation, thesis, portfolio

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