Thesis Guidelines

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Assessment Criteria

Please refer to your course handbook for assessment criteria of the XPUB and LB theses. If you lost the copy that was given to you, ask your course coordinator for a PDF of the latest version.

Thesis format

Accompanying the Graduation Project all students write an essay or 'project report' developing ideas related to, or directly arising from the project. This Master thesis is of the length of circa 7,000 - 8,000 words (see note on word count below for details).

You are required to deliver to the MFAD:LB and MFAD:XPUB Administration Office:

  • 2 Hard copies
  • a low resolution PDF (not above 1.5 megabytes.).
  • The printed copies should be: A4; text in a point 12 legible typeface (Linux Libertine family is good option); with numbered pages.

The title page should state:

[Your Name]
Thesis submitted to: the Department of [Experimental Publishing or Lens-Based Media],
Piet Zwart Institute, Willem de Kooning Academy,
in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the final examination for the degree of:
Master of Arts in Fine Art & Design: [Experimental Publishing or Lens-Based Media].
Adviser: [name]
Second Reader: [name]
Word count: [8000 words MAX excluding appendix and bib]

A Note about the Design/Layout


We are not assessing the design of the thesis. The focus is on the text and the research. We strongly recommend that you produce a very standard and neutral page layout. Exceptions should be discussed with and approved by your thesis supervisor. How this text will then be published in the context of your graduation work and research at the end of the year is a distinct matter and will be only relevant at a later stage.


We are not assessing the design of the thesis. However we welcome the extra attention and care you may want to give to your final document.

XPUB ONLY: From Thesis to Publication

After your final thesis assessment, the text of your thesis will be used to form one, or several publications on one, or several media, relevant to your research, practice and topic of interest. Similarly, your text may be published elsewhere, in an academic journal, as an online long-form essay, as chapter in a book, etc. We ask to follow the following guideline

1. To be included in the colophon (something like that):

This work has been produced in the context of the graduation research
of %YOURNAME% from the Experimental Publishing (XPUB) Master course
at the Piet Zwart Institute, Willem de Kooning Academy, Rotterdam
University of Applied Sciences.

XPUB is a two year Master of Arts in Fine Art and Design that focuses on
the intents, means and consequences of making things public and creating
publics in the age of post-digital networks.
This publication is based on the graduation thesis %TITLE%, written
under the supervision of %SUPERVISOR(S)%. 

2. You own your intellectual property, we just ask you to choose a license or copyright statement (or exception) that will allow PZI and WdKA to make your thesis public, available via our online libraries, and possible future publications.

For licensing:

Note: If you do not pick/write a license or provide a copyright statement, then your work will fall under standard copyright, meaning it will be always unclear for your readers to know what they can or cannot do, unless they know intellectual property laws well enough. It's OK to decide how you want your work to circulate, just save everyone's time by being explicit about it :)

3. XPUB PZI and WdKA Logo and marks:

git clone

A Note on Word Count

The word count includes all text, except the bibliography and potential appendix (only used to include original research material not otherwise published, such as interviews). Footnotes are included in the word count.