Thesis information

The following guide is intended to support you in the preparation of your thesis so that you can focus on the essential tasks of scientific work.
ATTENTION: Please take the instructions below (step 2) regarding the procedure for external theses seriously. We cannot supervise external theses that do not result from a joint topic search/cooperation between the company and the institute.

Step 1: Search for a topic

The first step in writing a thesis is to answer the question
"What topic do I want to work on in my thesis?"
To answer this question, in addition to your personal interests and goals, you should get to know the requirements for theses according to the SPO and the research areas of the Institute of Measurement and Control Systems. This will give you a overview of the possibilities and research ideas of our institute, so that you can decide whether the boundary conditions match your expectations.

If you decide to work on a thesis at the Institute of Measurement and Control Systems under the mentioned general conditions, you have several possibilities to find a topic.

  1. You visit our overview where current topics of the institute are presented with the corresponding supervisor.
  2. You have your own suggestions for an interesting topic. Please send an email to a supervisor who is active in a similar field of research with a description of the idea in the form of an exposé. This will make it easier for us to give you a qualified answer in a short time.

Step 2: Contacting and defining the topic

After you have decided on a topic, the next step is to contact the corresponding supervisor.

  1. Written thesis: The purpose of establishing contact is to enable you to get a more precise picture of the task by introducing and delimiting the thesis by the respective supervisor, clarifying any existing questions and giving you the opportunity to get to know the supervisor.
  2. Own suggestions: On the website of the supervisors, the thematic focus is indicated in each case, so that you can select and write to a supervisor who is suitable for your topic. Keep in mind that your own ideas will require increased coordination efforts and thus a longer lead time. Please also note the following requirements of the proposal:
    1.   meet the requirements for theses according to the respective SPO.
    2.   fit to the research areas of the Institute of Measurement and Control Systems.
    3.   have a generally valid character and be transferable, i.e. the scientific problem must be independent of the company.
    4.   your performance must be clearly recognizable, delimitable and verifiable.

Note on the offer for external theses (see also the Information Sheet External Theses):
The MRT welcomes the will of business and industry to participate in the scientific education of students. It is possible that final theses are advertised whose topics are inspired by business or industry. It should be noted that the precise setting of topics, supervision and evaluation of theses is the responsibility of university professors only. Furthermore, only those theses that fall within the respective subject area of the institute can be offered. Accordingly, the following procedure results for a company wishing to suggest a topic for a thesis:

  1. Proposal of a topic on the part of the company (incl. explanation of how the topic meets the requirements for a thesis)
  2. Review of the topic with regard to compliance with the scientific requirements, classification in the MRT's field of expertise and the available capacity at the MRT
  3. Close coordination of the topic between the company and the institute
  4. Formulation of the task by the institute
  5. Announcement of the thesis on the current topics page of the institute

Due to this procedure we would like to point out that the contacting of the students (see step 2) as well as the following selection of the students by the institute can only take place after the announcement of the thesis on the page of the current topics of the institute.

A confidentiality agreement cannot be concluded.

Step 3: Registration at the institute and exposé/outline

You have decided on a topic, found a supervisor, and cleared up any existing questions. The next step on the way to your thesis is now the preparation of the thesis assignment by communicating your decision to the supervisor.

The first task now is to create a one-page synopsis as well as an outline. You can find more detailed instructions about their form and content in the internal area. By submitting these documents, you should prove that you have sufficiently thought about the problem at hand. This means that you have mentally anticipated the processing of the entire task in the required depth of content and have made the necessary decisions regarding the methods and procedures.

Step 4: Registration with the faculty

The fourth step is to register with the faculty using the relevant form, which is then used to obtain the green certificate. This is done in consultation with the supervisor, after successful preparation of the exposé and outline.

For students of the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering the respective form and the description of the process is available here: Examination Board 2 - Forms

Step 5: Editing the thesis

After registering your thesis with the examination office, the official editing period begins for you.

There is a format template available at the Institute of Measurement and Control Systems for the written elaboration, which should be used for a consistent and clean design of your thesis. You can find this LaTeX template in the internal area. The citation style is already embedded in it.

Step 6: Submission of the thesis

The written thesis has to be handed in to the supervisor at the latest by the end of the processing time. Please note that you have to hand in the following to your supervisor:

  1. Three bound copies of your thesis with integrated assignment (institute archive, supervisor).
  2. The paper as well as the presentation in electronic form (as pdf, and depending on the format as LaTeX, Word, Powerpoint, ... )
  3. All documents important for the result (code, Excel files, simulation models, literature, etc.)
  4. A statement of the following wording is to be included in the paper:
    "I hereby truthfully affirm that I have prepared the work independently, except for the aids already known to the person making the assignment, that I have fully indicated all aids used, and that I have marked everything that has been taken from the work of others, either unchanged or with modifications."

Either hand in the files on a labeled USB stick, send the files zipped by e-mail, or release them in the institute's own version management system.

Step 7: Colloquium

The final presentation will take place during a colloquium, which will be held on the first Friday of each month. Please ask your supervisor for the exact dates. The lecture will take place at the latest at the first colloquium after submission of the thesis. The colloquia are open to the public. Interested visitors are welcome to attend.

Since the presentation is part of the final thesis and thus also influences the evaluation, the following brief instructions are to be observed:

  • You will have 20 minutes for your thesis presentation. This will be followed by a discussion of about 10 minutes with questions about the content of your thesis.
  • During the presentation, be aware that the audience may not know anything about your thesis. Explain the necessary basics so that the audience can follow.
  • The slides should be clear and easy to read, not overloaded with too many details. It is recommended to use a sans-serif font (Arial, ...) with a minimum font size of 16-18 points.
  • As an empirical value, you can assume that you need between two and three minutes for one slide.
  • Remember to explain as much as possible using graphics (a picture is worth a thousand words - and everyone present can read) and only list content that should be addressed.

Prepare for the presentation by 'rehearsing' it in front of friends.

Step 8: Evaluation

Your thesis will be evaluated after you have submitted your paper and conducted the colloquium.


We have taken large parts from the IFL's thesis helper. At this point, thank you for your kind permission.