4.1.2 Description Page

The description page of a bachelor’s or master’s thesis is a form containing a bibliographic description and an abstract of the work. Its purpose is to provide the reader with basic information on the work in proper form. Text on the description page is single spaced. The author(s) of project reports can obtain an electronic description page template from the various schools of JAMK University of Applied Sciences as well as from the Study Guide.

The Date on the description page refers to the submission date of the report (i.e. the date the report is submitted for assessment, after which it is not changed anymore). The Type of publication is Bachelor’s (or Master’s) thesis. The complete name of the Degree programme, the name(s) of the Tutor/Supervisor/Advisor and assignor (Assigned by) are written on separate lines.

The item Pages indicates the total number of pages contained in the report. If the proportion of appendices to the overall report is large, the type and number of pages of the appendices can be specified under the item Miscellaneous (e.g. ”Appendix: Instruction file, 30 pages”). Here the appendix may also be defined as, e.g. a video DVD or a computer programme on CD-ROM, and that it constitutes part of a larger research project or a co-operative project of several degree programmes.

The description page of an English bachelor’s or master’s thesis is written only in English; no Finnish translation is needed, except in the case of Finnish students preparing a thesis for a degree programme in which the language of instruction is English. Further instructions and resources for compiling the various parts of a bachelor’s or master’s thesis into a single PDF document for publishing are available via the Study Guide.

Abstract

The abstract should contain approximately 200 words, and give information on the subject matter, objectives, methods and results of the work, as well as on possible further applications of the results. The descriptive part should be clearly organised and contain the following information: The goal of the work and the research task, stated in a compact, yet sufficiently informative way. An eventual assignor is named at the very beginning of the abstract. The implementation of the work is explained in broad terms, stage by stage. The results are presented compactly, as facts. The conclusions and applications are presented last. Prospects for later use and development can also be mentioned here.

On the basis of the abstract, the reader decides whether the report is worthy of a closer look. Because the abstract is short, the focus should be on the most interesting part, i.e. the results. Only full sentences should be used in the abstract, as well as statements of fact, the passive voice, and the past tense. (See Hirsjärvi et al. 2009, 253.) The abstract should be an independent entity and contain no references to the work it presents (one must not write, e.g. ”This bachelor’s or master’s thesis ….”

Keywords

The author describes the contents of the bachelor’s or master’s thesis with keywords that make the work easy for readers to find. Keyword indices can be used to choose keywords (see also Chapter 2). If a chosen keyword is included in a keyword index, the word should be used in the same form that it appears in the index. Keyword indices present both the recommended forms of the words and parallel and synonymous expressions. For example, in a thesis about customer service, in addition to customer service, one could specify such keywords as customer orientation and customer relationship. Interview study, questionnaire study, action study, or other terms to describe the research method(s), give the reader some insight into the thinking behind the material.

Keyword indices do not usually include the latest field-specific terminology—consequently, field-specific terms are used as keywords. Proper names of companies and places, for example, can also be used as keywords. Students can avail themselves of the JAMK Library’s services when choosing keywords and their form. The JAMK Library’s webpages also provide links to keyword indices and databases. In addition to the general Finnish Ontology Library Service ONKI, the links include field-specific terminology lists, such as MeSH (Medical Subject Headings) Browser, used by students of the School of Health and Social Studies.