About Term Papers and Theses

The ability to communicate scientific contents in a formally correct, coherent, and competent way is an indispensable skill for any psychologist. You acquire that skill when you work on your term papers and thesis.

Please read our 

Writing Guide (German only)

to make sure your paper or thesis is free of formal errors. You need to fill out the checklist at the end of the Writing Guide to make sure your paper fulfills all necessary criteria.

When you turn in your thesis by uploading it as a PDF file using the HHU Studierendenportal you declare, by marking a checkbox, that you are the sole author of your thesis and that you did not use any sources apart from those mentioned explicitly in your thesis. For term papers please fill out our

Affidavit (German only)

in which you declare that you are the sole author of the paper and that you did not use any illegitimate aids. When you turn in your term paper we also need the completed checklist and the affidavit. 

What you need to know about term papers

Some papers are acceptable in the first version that we see. We highly appreciate students who achieve this.

Notes and corrections

We add notes and suggestions for corrections to your term paper in order to help your revising it. However, your term paper must meet certain minimal standards if we are to read it completely. If your term paper contains too many errors in form and content, then we will simply stop reading it and reject it.

If you find notes and suggestions for corrections attached to a particular paragraph, then this must not be taken to imply that you need to revise your paper at that particular place only. Rather you need to read your entire paper repeatedly, always searching for ways to improve it. You will be surprised to learn how many errors and problems you will find even after repeated revisions.

When you hand in your revised term paper, then please also hand in the previous version containing our notes and suggestions for corrections. In that way it is easier for us to see whether you have responded successfully to our notes and suggestions.

We accept two revisions

There used to be a time during which we accepted an unlimited number of revisions. Unfortunately, this caused the “first versions” of term papers to get progressively worse. That is why we now accept only two revisions. If the third version of your term paper is still not acceptable, then you cannot get credits for it.

Guides for good writing style

Many term papers suffer from inferior writing style. If you want to improve your writing skills, then you may take a look at one of these books:

  • Schneider, W. (1994). Deutsch fürs Leben. Hamburg: Rororo.
  • Strunk, W. (1999). The elements of style (4th Ed.). Boston: Allyn & Bacon.
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