Thesis tutorial

lphys2197  2019-2020  Louvain-la-Neuve

Thesis tutorial
Note from June 29, 2020
Although we do not yet know how long the social distancing related to the Covid-19 pandemic will last, and regardless of the changes that had to be made in the evaluation of the June 2020 session in relation to what is provided for in this learning unit description, new learnig unit evaluation methods may still be adopted by the teachers; details of these methods have been - or will be - communicated to the students by the teachers, as soon as possible.
2 credits
15.0 h
Q1 and Q2
Adrioueche Ahmed; Govaerts Jan;
Knowledge of scientific English (intermediate level)
Main themes
Upon the completion of this teaching unit students should feel fairly confident when giving a scientific presentation in English focusing mainly on the academic field of physics, and using the scientific communication skills acquired through this teaching unit.
1.     Training in scientific presentation skills, focusing on physics issues, under the supervision of an English language teacher of the Institut des Langue Vivantes.
2.     Public presentation in English of the state of progress of the student's Master thesis.

At the end of this learning unit, the student is able to :


a.     Contribution of the teaching unit to the learning outcomes of the programme (PHYS2M and PHYS2M1)
AA3: A3.1, A3.2, A3.3
AA4: A4.1, A4.2
AA5: A5.1, A5.2, A5.3
AA6: A6.1, A6.3, A6.5
AA7: A7.1, A7.2, A7.3, A7.4, A7.5, A7.6
AA8: A8.1
AA9: A9.1
b.    Specific learning outcomes of the teaching unit
By the end of this teaching unit, the student will be able to :
1.     organise and structure a scientific content in order to present it, by correctly citing one's sources according to the rules of use, and adapting to the target audience ;
2.     master the linguistic tools necessary for the transition between different matter contents of the presentation;
3.     control extra-linguistic aspects such as 'body language' and 'eye contact';
4.     integrate within the presentation (by pointing to, referring to, highlighting with graphics the information given on slides) with the help of adequate verbal structures, specific points in order to bring out their relevance ;
5.     summarise in a few sentences the whole of the presentation before closing (take home message) ;
6.     master the basic scientific pronunciation as well as the recurring keywords of the Master thesis topic ;
7.     improve the successive versions of one's presentation by relying on the collective (peer learning) and the individual (tutorial) remarks;
8.     manage, understand, clarify as required, rephrase and answer questions following the presentation, using techniques to better expand on one's answers.

The contribution of this Teaching Unit to the development and command of the skills and learning outcomes of the programme(s) can be accessed at the end of this sheet, in the section entitled “Programmes/courses offering this Teaching Unit”.
  1. Teaching activity which concludes the training in English of physics students which begins in the 1st cycle of the physics programme, leading to an active spoken knowledge of the language at the end of the 2nd cycle of that programme, with public oral presentations of their personal and scientific skills.
  2. Preparation for public oral scientific presentations in English in front of their peers, properly structured and adapted to the target audience, with a critical attitude towards the practice of the English language, its grammar, its articulation and pronunciation, and its cultural idioms, and with correct references to its scientific sources according to the rules in use.
  3. Familiarity with, and practice of communication techniques and public oral presentations, and also in preparation for socio-professional integration, using modern communication and presentation techniques, which are adapted to target audiences.
  4. The final examination for this teaching unit is not organised during the June examination session, but rather during the semester towards end of March or after the Easter break. It consists of a public oral presentation in English in front of peers and academic members of the School of Physics, dealing with the student’s Master thesis topic, also taking due account of the efforts and progress made for this teaching unit throughout the year.
Teaching methods
The teaching unit consists in three parts:
  1. Training sessions (20h) on effective oral presentation and communication techniques in science, at the Institut des Langues Vivantes ; facts and figures (graphs, comparisons, likelihoods, etc.), transparency design, visual support (Power Point, etc.) ; systematic pronunciation exercises on recurrent terns in science and in physics in particular.
  2. Early on in the second term, students can rehearse their final presentation individually with the help of the language teacher (10h in all).
  3. Final presentation during the second term : public talk on the state of progress of the student’s Master thesis followed by time for questions from the thesis supervisor, its readers and the English language teacher.
Evaluation methods
The final evaluation takes place right after the final oral presentation and focuses on the quality of the talk rather than on its scientific content. As to the command of the English language, the assessment focuses on the student’s progress throughout the language sessions, with due attention to the pronunciation of recurrent terms, overall fluency, and the manner in which the student has actually applied the presentation techniques and communication skills developed in class.
Des références bibliographiques sont fournies par le Maître de Langue au cours du déroulement des activités de cette unité d'enseignement.
Bibliographic references are provided by the English language teacher throughout the progress of the teaching unit.
Faculty or entity

Programmes / formations proposant cette unité d'enseignement (UE)

Title of the programme
Master [60] in Physics

Master [120] in Physics