HGO4090 – Master's thesis 60 credits

Schedule, syllabus and examination date

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Course content

The master thesis constitutes independent academic research and the core of the master's degree programme in Human Geography. Students are required to have a member of the academic staff as their supervisor. Any external co- or main supervisor must be approved by the programme.

Getting started on a master’s thesis

Learning outcome

Working on the master’s thesis will prepare you for carrying out independent academic work, give you experience in the use of methods in practice, and enable you to gain practice in linking theory to empirical evidence.


Admission to the course is dependent on admission to the master’s degree programme in human geography.

Students with admission to the programme must each semester register which courses and examinations they wish to sign up for in StudentWeb.

If you are not already enrolled as a student at UiO, please see degrees and programmes of study and admission to study programmes.


Formal prerequisite knowledge

You must have passed the examination in HGO4011 – Philosophy and Methodology of Human Geography and two of the theory courses.


During the first year of the programme, three workshops will be organized to assist students in developing their master thesis projects. Attendance to the workshops is voluntary, but students are strongly encouraged to participate.

Students will receive individual supervision by a member of the academic staff, the supervisor. Supervisors will be suggested for all students in the first semester of the master’s degree programme.

Supervisor contract



The length of a 60-credit master’s thesis is maximum 40 000 words +/- 25% including everything (cover page, summary, table of contents, preface, reference list, annexes, figures, acronyms, etc.). Theses that exceed this limit will be rejected, and a new submission deadline will apply. If there is a need to deviate from the word limit, the student must, together with his/her supervisor, apply to the head of studies three weeks before the submission deadline. The application must be academically justified.

Once the thesis has been graded, an adjusting oral examination will be held on the thesis and its topic.

Examiner guidelines

Use of sources and citation

You should familiarize yourself with the rules that apply to the use of sources and citations. If you violate the rules, you may be suspected of cheating/attempted cheating.

Language of examination

The master’s degree can be written in Norwegian, Swedish, Danish or English.

The oral examination will be held in Norwegian. Applications to hold the oral examination in English should be submitted to the exam consultant.

The oral examination will be carried out within eight weeks of the submission deadline. This is calculated from the last possible submission date, irrespective of whether the thesis is actually delivered earlier.


Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a scale from A to F, where A is the best grade and F is a fail. Read more about the grading system.

Explanations and appeals

If you submit an appeal, your thesis will reassessed by two new examiners. At least one of the new examiners is external, i.e. from outside the University of Oslo. The new examiners will not have access to the original grade or the original examiners' explanation of this.Please note that the grade from the appeal process is final, and the grade awarded may be the same as, better or worse than the original grade. Only if the assessment of the master's thesis is changed, a new oral exam will be arranged.

Special examination arrangements

Application form, deadline and requirements for special examination arrangements.

Facts about this course






Covers two semesters, starting every spring and autumn


Spring and autumn

Teaching language