ETAD Project & Thesis

The final component of your program is either a master's project (ETAD 992.6) or a master's thesis (ETAD 994.12). If your career plans or interests include further academic study or a career in higher education, you might consider writing a thesis rather than a project. In most programs you can qualify for admission to a doctoral program with either a project or a thesis, but the thesis will give you better preparation for conducting doctoral research. If your plans are to use the M.Ed. as a terminal degree (your last one) for salary or personal purposes, another option could be the course-based program, which includes ECUR 991.3 as a culminating activity in which you design a complete professional portfolio to synthesize and demonstrate what you have learned in the program.

In the program, we do not have a preference for one program route over another. You should make your decision to undertake the portfolio, project, or thesis based on your own interests and professional aspirations.

Project Information & Guidelines

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A project allows you to create a product that demonstrates your mastery of design and development principles and skills. Generally speaking, the project can be used as the centerpiece of your professional portfolio if you are looking for a position as a practitioner or manager in instructional design or educational technology.

Project Proposal Guidelines

The following outline is intended to give you an idea of what should be included in a typical proposal for a master's project, not to prescribe the specific content of your proposal. You can and should make necessary changes and additions to describe your proposed project clearly, concisely, and thoroughly to your committee.

We recommend that you develop a one or two page précis of your intentions and share it with your project supervisor before writing an entire project proposal.

1. Statement of Intent

  • Describe the product you will build.
  • Describe the need for the product.

Questions you may address in the Statement of Intent:

  • Is it useful?
  • Has a client identified a need?
  • Is the product innovative?
  • Does the product have significance in the field?
  • Does the product demonstrate the an approach of theoretical interest?
  • Describe the main components and people involved in the product.
  • Who is the client?
  • Are there any potential funding agencies?
  • Is there a design team?
  • What roles do team members play?

2. Supporting Literature and Information

  • Describe the key variables you must consider to complete your product.
  • Discuss what key literature says about your topic and your approach to it.
  • Describe the model of instructional design you are following
  • Contextual variables? (schools, businesses, commercial entities, universities, technical institutes, homes)
  • Design variables?
  • Learner/user variables?
  • Usability testing and formative evaluation strategies?

3. Production Blueprint

  • What needs to be done in what sequence?
  • Time lines for completing each step?
  • Human resources and committee support required?
  • Client approvals required and how you will obtain them?
  • Copyright issues and release forms?
  • Equipment/software needed and access you may require?
  • Financial resources required and the plan for acquiring them?
  • Media releases, permission forms and ethics committee approval?

Thesis Information & Guidelines

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The thesis allows you to demonstrate your skills in research. You will plan, conduct and report a significant study that contributes to our understanding of the theory or practice of educational technology. It may replicate or extend earlier research on a topic, and it will be held to rigorous professional standards for conducting the research and writing the thesis.

Some examples of thesis topics in Educational Technology and Design include:

  • Visual Design Factors in Web Design
  • Computer Education, Gender and Research
  • Teachers' Experiences with Technology: Tales from the Field
  • Students' Experiences with Technology: Tales from the Field Distance
  • Education Technology and the Teaching/Learning Process
  • The Role of the Teacher Librarian
  • Effect Usability Testing on Literative Product Development
  • Distance Education and Communications Technology at the University of Saskatchewan

The College of Graduate Studies and Research publishes a booklet called "Guide for the Preparation of a Thesis" available online, or from the University of Saskatchewan Bookstore. CGSR has also prepared a pamphlet called "Guidelines for Various Parties involved in Graduate Student Project and Thesis Research" which is available at the College of Graduate Studies and Research. We recommend you acquire both of these useful documents before writing a thesis proposal.

Thesis Guidelines

Guidelines for Preparation of a Thesis - College of Graduate Studies and Research