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OnderzoekZernike (ZIAM)OnderwijsTop Master Program in Nanoscience

Research paper (NS190)


In the second semester of the first year, each student will write a paper on a scientific topic.

All learning objectives, teachers, assesments and the time schedule can be found on ocasys, all additional information can be found on this page.

Subject of the paper

Nanoscience is a rapidly evolving field, often involving alternative or even controversial approaches, with many side branches. Not all of these can be addressed within the limited time for courses, nor have they converged to a state that is ready for a standard course. The present task allows the student to perform an in-depth, critical study of such a topic within nanoscience.

In order that the student gets a broad view of Nanoscience, the subject and the supervisor of the paper cannot be the same as the Small research project nor the Master thesis project.

The topic of the paper is chosen by the student and needs approval of his/her mentor. In case the student cannot come up with his/her own suggestion, the mentor will decide on the topic. In any case, the course coordinator is to be informed about subject and supervisor. (See guidelines for declaring study-program choices).


The students are free to ask any staff member of the Zernike Institute for the supervision during the preparation and writing of the paper. It is best to have a good match between the topic of the paper and the expertise of the supervisor. To initiate the search for a supervisor, the students are asked to discuss this with their mentor. If the student does not bring forward a preference to write the paper on a certain topic, it is adviced that the mentor becomes the supervisor.

NOTE: you must select (=discuss while asking) a supervisor that is frequently available for feedback in February and March.

The supervisor and the course coordinator jointly determine the mark obtained for the paper using this assesment form.

Guidelines for the layout

The paper should not exceed approximately 20 pages A4 (of ~500 words), including figures and references. It must include:

  • an abstract;

  • a list of contents;

  • an introduction explaining why this topic has been selected and how it fits in the broad scope of nanoscience;

  • conclusions that not only summarize the findings but also clarify one's own contributions;

  • a complete list of references.

The main body of the text will depend on the type of paper, but must be structured by means of sections and subsections. When needed, Appendices with auxiliary information may be added after the References. Finally, it is important to also be critical about one's own paper!

Time schedule

  • A kick-off meeting by prof. dr. ir. P. Onck is in the roster (First week of second semester, block 2A).
  • Modules on literature search and academic writing are scheduled (prof. dr. R.C. Chiechi) in February.
  • Prof. dr. T. Banerjee will give a lecture-workshop about scientific integrity and ethics (February).

1. Selection of subject and supervisor.

2. Better defining the topic (literature study and exploratory discussions with supervisor).

3. Writing of a first complete draft; Submitting draft to supervisor cc course coordinator.

4. Review and approval by supervisor (revisions if necessary)

5. Student sends final version for grading to supervisor and course coordinator.

6. Supervisor sends proposed grade to course coordinator.

7. Evaluation of all papers by the course coordinator and final grading.

Consult the schedule for the meetings.
The dates for the different steps (1-4) will be announced by the course-coordinator.


Here you can find the archive of the research papers written by former Nanoscience Top Master students.

Last modified:20 February 2018 1.00 p.m.