I’m currently supervising an undergraduate senior project in the Department of Physics. I’m responsible for supervising a last year physics student who will be graduating by the end of June. As a new lecturer and supervisor, I was wondering about several aspects and I would like to gain a deeper understanding of how supervision is normally carried out. Please note that I neither have previous experience in supervising students, officially speaking, nor I did a senior project during my Bachelor degree. For that reason, I would really appreciate if you can share your valuable experience and kindly advise me to the following questions I have on my mind:
- Since I didn’t do a senior project during my undergraduate studies, I would like to know what a senior project is and what should the student work on during his last semester? To be more specific, what is the difference between a master degree thesis and a senior project?
- Should the project include research work or just reading about a certain subject (literature review only)? What if the student worked on a research topic and did not obtain any result, what should be done in this case?
- Since the project spans over a semester, may the student work on a research topic? Do you advise publishing a research paper on the Bachelor degree level?
- If it is not a research-based project, what kind of topics the student would be able to work on? Should he choose his own topic?
- I understand that the grading criteria differ from one university to another, but in general, what are the main points the student will be assessed on?
- Besides, on the day of the presentation, what type of questions should be asked by me to the senior students of different fields?