Independent Minds, Working Together



The project abstract is a formal document, not a slip of paper with a few vague ideas on it about what the student thinks would be interesting to do. In order to receive approval for a project, the student will present a proposal outlining the following:

  • The project's focus (e.g., examine artificial intelligence and speech synthesis, investigate microcomputer security, examine the importance of documentation (human factors), etc.).
  • The project's objectives in terms of the topics that the theoretical portion of the IS thesis will cover, the software or documents that the project will produce, and the learning that will result from accomplishing the project.
  • The efforts that will contribute to the project: programming, interviews, special library research, trips, and needed materials (languages, machines, documentation, etc.).
  • Potential problems in the project that might become trouble spots. Identify the challenges the student might encounter in accomplishing the project. The student should investigate whether these trouble spots could make the rest of the project impossible if they cannot be surmounted.
  • A suggested timetable specifying the points throughout the two semesters at which the various phases of the project will be complete.
  • A minimum of five references (journal articles, technical reports, books) on your proposed topic. Online references are not, generally, acceptable.

Annotated Bibliography

An annotated bibliography is a bibliography in which each entry includes a description of the entry’s content and the role it might take in the research. This description is not a copy of the entry’s abstract.

Thesis Outline

A proposed table of contents (outline) for the thesis. The table of contents should include a title and a specification of chapters and sub-sections.

Project Research

The project should begin with a substantial amount of library research. The description of this research should involve a clear exposition of the problem or research area, an annotated bibliography, and an outline for conducting the research.

Completed Chapters

In mid-October, the student will reach an agreement with his/her advisor about which chapters are to be completed as a prerequisite to satisfactory completion of the first semester of Senior IS. These chapters must be submitted by the date given on the timeline later in this document. A completed chapter is not an outline or a draft, but a chapter that has been through at least one review by the advisor.

CD and Web Document

The I.S. text, source files and results are provided on CD to the advisor before the oral defense. An html document containing the author’s name, graduation date, advisor’s name, I.S. title, and project abstract is provided to the advisor before the oral defense.