Advice needed regarding MA dissertation supervision

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an drej
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I am writing this on behalf of a friend, who's doing an MA at UCL and is just about to start working on her dissertation. She says no one in the department is suitable to supervise her topic, and that she's been assigned a supervisor whose research interests aren't a good fit for her proposed topic. She's asked me for advice on what the best course of action would be in this situation.

In my view the best thing for her to do would be a) to find the least unsuitable member of staff to supervise her current topic or b) change the topic. She's suggesting arranging a meeting with someone from another university who may be able to help her with the dissertation, but I've told her this is probably not feasible, but I wanted to hear the opinions of other people who might have better suggestions.

Thank you kindly in advance.
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BeetRoots
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I would go with your advice. The dissertation would usually be marked by the supervisor and one other at the University (they would agree a mark between them). It follows that a student has to pick a topic that their supervisor is comfortable with, even if they aren't an 'expert'.
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PhoenixFortune
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(Original post by an drej)
I am writing this on behalf of a friend, who's doing an MA at UCL and is just about to start working on her dissertation. She says no one in the department is suitable to supervise her topic, and that she's been assigned a supervisor whose research interests aren't a good fit for her proposed topic. She's asked me for advice on what the best course of action would be in this situation.

In my view the best thing for her to do would be a) to find the least unsuitable member of staff to supervise her current topic or b) change the topic. She's suggesting arranging a meeting with someone from another university who may be able to help her with the dissertation, but I've told her this is probably not feasible, but I wanted to hear the opinions of other people who might have better suggestions.

Thank you kindly in advance.
When I completed my MA dissertation, if someone proposed a topic that wasn't within the research/interest remit of any of the lecturers, the student was strongly encouraged to change their topic. While external supervisors were permitted by the department head in exceptional circumstances (such as if a PhD offer or similar depended on a particular dissertation focus), this was not the norm.

A friend of mine had to alter his topic, and while he was a little resistant at first, ultimately he wanted to receive appropriate support and get a good mark, so it was what he had to do. He ended up changing the specifics of his research question, participant population, and part of his methodology.
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