What happens if I don't submit my dissertation

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    Hello,

    I'm currently doing a master's degree (MSc) in Durham University, and I successfully passed all the required modules with good grades. The only requirement left for me to get my degree is to write a thesis. To be honest, I'm not at all interested in research in any way, but I needed to study this master's course because they offered the type of knowledge that I needed. My question is if it is possible for me to get something like a post-grad diploma instead of going through all the trouble of doing something that I hate?
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    You may be able to to depending on the uni but I would consider what else a dissertation gives you apart from research skills and whether or not they will apply to other jobs you may want to do. Presumably you decided to do this masters course to improve your job prospects.
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    Whether you can get a PGDip (or whatever) will depend on your Uni/course regulations so you need to have a look at those. But if you do go that route plenty of people (including employers) won't understand what the qualification you spent a year getting actually is and plenty of those who DO understand what it is will assume that you failed your dissertation.
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    Check the academic regulations and discuss with the course director. Why sign up to an MSc if you knew you wouldn't want to do the dissertation? Think about whether you'd benefit career-wise from having an MSc degree or is a PgDip sufficient? It's only a couple more months of work.
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    Or you can just man up and write it.
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    It completely depends what your aim is. What is it?

    There's nothing wrong with a PgDip. I've been weighing up the same dilemma myself only recently.
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    (Original post by beautifulbigmacs)
    It completely depends what your aim is. What is it?

    There's nothing wrong with a PgDip. I've been weighing up the same dilemma myself only recently.
    I come from an engineering background and I wanted some theoretical knowledge in Management, and I already got it from the modules I took. And I really don't feel like like spending 3 months doing a research project is going to give add any thing to the skills set that I needed.
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    (Original post by Duncan2012)
    Check the academic regulations and discuss with the course director. Why sign up to an MSc if you knew you wouldn't want to do the dissertation? Think about whether you'd benefit career-wise from having an MSc degree or is a PgDip sufficient? It's only a couple more months of work.
    The course I took offered an internship option but I could't take it because my department didn't really offer any placement scheme in the field I'm interested in. So I sort of got stuck with the whole dissertation thing.
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    (Original post by alleycat393)
    You may be able to to depending on the uni but I would consider what else a dissertation gives you apart from research skills and whether or not they will apply to other jobs you may want to do. Presumably you decided to do this masters course to improve your job prospects.
    I actually already have my job, and I did the master course because I needed some theoretical background in Management. I got what I needed from the course, but I can't find any information in the regulations book about not doing the dissertation.
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    (Original post by MoYaz)
    I come from an engineering background and I wanted some theoretical knowledge in Management, and I already got it from the modules I took. And I really don't feel like like spending 3 months doing a research project is going to give add any thing to the skills set that I needed.
    OK. I'm not from the subject backgrounds you list but here's my understanding of it;

    You don't necessarily need a management degree to be working as a manager. That sort of thing can depend on your general industry related ability, length of service in a company and rightly or wrongly, company politics.

    You've already got you engineering degree so if this is the field you want to go into whilst using your PgDip as a means of communicating to potential employers, "hey I know about management" then it is my belief that the PgDip should be sufficient.

    From my own experience, there's always that worry of "will I kick myself for not doing the full masters later on down the line" but the thing is there's all kinds of reasons why doors may be open or closed.

    PgDip means that you've covered all of the taught units. The dissertation is more about being able to demonstrate research abilities.*
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    (Original post by MoYaz)
    I actually already have my job, and I did the master course because I needed some theoretical background in Management. I got what I needed from the course, but I can't find any information in the regulations book about not doing the dissertation.
    Even more reason why it's ok not to do the masters dissertation if you really don't want to.

    To get the facts on where the uni stand with this, I'd urge you to email your question and cc your course leader, the finance team and head of student/academic services.
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    For the sake of just 3 months effort you can come out with a meaningful qualification. You've paid for the MSc, you might as well finish it. All the theoretical knowledge you got could be read in a book or a journal - there's not much to distinguish yourself from your peers. Being able to apply that knowledge to a real-life project adds a lot of value, and research skills will always be useful in the engineering world.

    I like qualifications - they help demonstrate my level of knowledge to future employers. While a PgDip might be sufficient for your short-term situation, I would be thinking bigger picture. How many C-level execs have a PgDip in Management compared to an MBA, for instance?
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    (Original post by MoYaz)
    I actually already have my job, and I did the master course because I needed some theoretical background in Management. I got what I needed from the course, but I can't find any information in the regulations book about not doing the dissertation.
    Speak to your course leader. They will either know, or be able to find out, whether it's possible to leave with some kind of qualification if you don't submit a diss. Some unis don't offer that as an option - each can set their own regs.
 
 
 
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