Project Assessment1. Project Quality Standards
The Project should meet or exceed the content, layout and production
standards set by the University and the program. The Graduate
Student should consider the following quality issues when producing the
Content Quality Considerations
• Did the literature review consider all appropriate
sources of information?
• Did the Graduate Student properly address the
problems identified in the Project Proposal using valid tools or
• Does the final version of Project thesis adequately
how the Graduate Student applied the research methodology and steps
described in the original Project Proposal?
• Are the data gathering techniques described or
attached to the final version of Project thesis?
• Is the reliability and validity of all data
gathering techniques described in the final version of Project thesis?
• Does the final version of Project thesis
proper and effective use of statistical analysis or qualitative
• Are the findings, conclusions and recommendations
in the Project thesis supported by collected evidence and other
described in the literature review?
• Does the Project conform to the Research Ethics
Policy of Athabasca University?
• Will the Project stand up to rigorous academic
Production Quality Considerations
• Does the Project layout and format conform to the
IS Project style Guide?
• Are the citations and reference list formatted in
accordance with the MSc IS Project style Guide?
• Are the tables, figures, diagrams and graphs of
sufficient print quality that they can be reproduced on a high quality
photocopier? Are they suitable for microfilm reproduction?
• Is the Project free of spelling or grammatical
• Is the Project printed on appropriate paper?
Please refer to the style guide for advice on appropriate paper for
2. Assessment Criteria
The Project and supporting materials will be assessed based on their
ability to meet the program mission to provide leadership in:
• assessing the integration of the IS function, IS
technologies and scientific scope of an issue or problem pertaining to
sustaining or enhancing IS in the enterprise;
• identifying, evaluating and comparing, from all
perspectives, solutions or goals and alternative strategies; and
• preparing plans for, and securing action.
The Project must be a sustained, creative, independent and original
of applied work. Athabasca University requires that:
• The Project must be conducted according to sound
research and inquiry methods.
• The Project must be open to critical examination
review by peers, scholars and practitioners in the Graduate Student’s
major field of study.
• The Project must be defensible by the author, in
all claims, observations or recommendations made must be supported by
intellectual and practical constructs.
• Underlying empirical evidence and methods used to
analyze the problem and develop recommendations should be available for
review upon request.
• The Project must demonstrate thorough understanding
of the program mission.
• The Project must be presented in a manner that is
suitable for evaluation and cataloguing.
• The Project must conform to the MSc IS Project
Guide or approved equivalent.
External Reader Assessment Criteria
The Project Supervisor and external reader will base their assessment
the Project on an examination of four key areas:
• Critical Reasoning
• Knowledge and Skills
These key areas are outlined in the Project
After completing a final review of the Project, the Project committee
members will discuss the results. The majority of Committee
must agree on one of the following Project grades:
- Acceptable: No
modifications are required to the Project. The Graduate
Student will be allowed to submit his/her Project and apply for
- Acceptable with Minor Revisions:
Some minor modifications are required
to the Project. When these modifications have been completed, the
Supervisor will review the changes with the Graduate Student. If
changes conform to the direction provided by the Project committee, the
Graduate Student will be allowed to submit his/her Project and apply
- Acceptable with Major Revisions:
Major modifications, further
justification or additional research is required before the majority of
the Project committee members would consider the Project
the Project has been revised, the Project Supervisor will review the
changes with the Graduate Student. If the changes conform to the
direction provided by the Project committee, then the Graduate Student
will re-circulate the Project to all Committee members for
The Project Supervisor will discuss the results of the second review
members. If the majority of Committee members consider the
revised Project to be acceptable, then the Graduate Student will be
submit his/her Project and apply for graduation.
4. Student Appeal Procedures
- Not Acceptable/Rejected:
If the majority of Project committee members
reject a Student’s Project, the Project plus all Project assessment
and other supporting materials will be passed to the Graduate Program
Coordinator for review. The Graduate Program Coordinator will
determine whether the Student should withdraw from the program or be
given an opportunity to complete a second Project. Students who
required to withdraw from the program will be sent a letter by the
Graduate Program Coordinator explaining the reason for the decision.
Students will have an opportunity to appeal their assessment if the
Project is deemed to be “Not Acceptable/Rejected”. This appeal should
directed to the director of the School of Computing and Information
Systems (SCIS) for review and consideration.
Students must submit a Letter of Appeal to the Director of the School
of Computing and Information Systems explaining their reasons for the
appeal. The letter must be received within 60
days of being informed
that their Project was considered “Not Acceptable/Rejected”.
Students who submit a Letter of Appeal will receive a formal decision
from the Director of the School of Computing and Information Systems
days of the receipt
of their letter.