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HUMAN NUTRITION PROGRAM
NUT 560J: RESEARCH IN NUTRITION
†††††††† Submission of a thesis based on either library research or a special research project, is a requirement for graduation from the Human Nutrition Program at UB. The thesis may be completed at any time during matriculation in the Program but students usually register for Nut 560J at the time that 4th semester classes are taken. Students have one semester to complete the thesis after all courses have been completed. Due dates for the thesis are August 31st and January 15th for students completing coursework in the spring and summer, respectively for the campus program.
Distance Learning students who choose to take this course as their elective have till the end of the semester that they registered in to complete the thesis
††††††††††† Most students choose to submit a thesis based on library research using peer-reviewed nutrition literature. In some cases, original research completed by the student will be acceptable as an alternative to library research. As indicated below, the format varies for each form.† However, prior approval of the thesis advisor is mandatory for both forms.
††††††††† A thesis based on a literature review is best completed on a topic related to human nutrition that is of special personal interest to the student. Enthusiasm and, thus, motivation to carry out the required library research is likely to be greater than for a topic that is only of superficial interest.
††††††††† Sufficient current scientific nutrition literature should be available on the selected topic. It is important to understand that a literature review needs to be objective; that is, it should include both supportive and contradictory studies. Nearly all topics in nutrition contain contrary studies. It is obligatory that the student include these contradictory studies in the thesis,
††††††††† If the topic selected is too broad, your thesis advisor will work with you to limit it. The nutrition literature on most topics encompasses hundreds or even thousands of studies and it is inadvisable to attempt to write a thesis that effectively covers such broad topics. This is one reason why it is necessary for the thesis advisor to be contacted for topic selection before beginning the review.
††††††††††† After your topic has been approved by your thesis advisor, it will be necessary to submit a thesis outline for his or her approval. At the beginning of this is a statement of the purpose of the thesis, followed by subtopics and/or supporting statements based on the literature. Each major statement can be subdivided into secondary statements. Each entry in the outline may consist of phrases, sentences, or even paragraphs.
Only papers in the English language should be used as references. Also, only published peer-reviewed papers will be acceptable. Articles published only on-line and not available in libraries will not be accepted.† Only one form for citation of references are acceptable and this is described below.†††††
The thesis must be written using standard English syntax, grammar, and spelling. Any thesis that does not conform to standard English usage will be rejected until the errors are fully corrected. There are no exceptions to this requirement. Students for whom English is a second language may need to obtain outside assistance in this context, because it is not the role of the thesis advisor to do this.
††††††††††† Formats for the literature review and original research follow:
Literature Review††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††††††††Original Research
Title Page††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Title Page
Table of Contents††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Table of Contents
††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††† References††††††††
Since original research projects are rarely submitted, students wishing to do this will receive personal instruction from the thesis advisor.†††††††
Organization of the Literature Review Thesis:
†††††††††† The title page must follow the format shown in the appended section. Make sure that your title is appropriate and descriptive of the content of your paper.
Table of Contents:
†††††††††† This section provides a listing of the thesis contents in numerical order.
The abstract is the last section of your paper to be written, although it is placed first in the final thesis. The abstract summarizes the significance, content, and conclusion of the thesis. It should not exceed 250 words and is to be written in entire sentences. It should include the objectives of the literature review, definitions of any unusual terms, findings from the literature, and significant conclusions based on the literature. A reader should be able to obtain all the important information about your thesis from the abstract, without reading the entire paper.
††††††††† This section is designed to express the purpose and scope of the paper. Clarifications, definitions and controversial issues are also discussed here. Historical references pertinent to the paper may also be provided but the literature is not reviewed in this section.
††††††††† This section is the most lengthy portion of the paper and encompasses a review of studies in the scientific literature that pertain to the chosen topic. It is best to begin by perusing relevant chapters in books or review papers. In fact, it would be prudent to observe review papers to serve as models for your thesis.
††††††††† Avoid citation of books because these may be more difficult to find and are generally not o peer-review.
††††††††† Opposing viewpoints may be included in the review but these are to be critiqued in the following section.
You may paraphrase the studies but avoid direct quotations, even if quotation marks are used. Quotations are generally absent from scientific papers.
Although some secondary sources are acceptable, avoid using them extensively. Doing so would constitute a review of reviews, and this is unacceptable for the thesis. Similarly, meta-analyses should also be avoided or used minimally. Instead, rely upon primary sources, especially those that incorporate a double-blind, placebo-controlled research protocol. Remember that observational (epidemiological) studies can never be used to prove cause and effect relationships. They can only be used as supportive evidence.
Do not rely primarily on experimental studies using animals or tissue culture since their findings may not be extrapolated to humans. However, such studies can be incorporated into the paper for providing supportive evidence.
It is important to base your thesis on the recent biomedical literature. In general, papers that are more than a decade and a half old are unacceptable, except when they are of historical interest. The nutritional literature becomes quickly outdated. Accordingly, a thesis primarily based on the older literature is unacceptable.
††††††††††† This section comprises your own ideas about the literature that you have surveyed. Those studies that incorporate unsound methodology should be noted as being less credible than those that are methodologically sound. Try to point out other strengths and weaknesses of the cited studies. Discuss alternative explanations and suggest possible future studies that may clarify ambiguous findings. Creativity, originality, and critical thinking are qualities that help to distinguish a superior thesis from an ordinary one.
††††††††††† Conclude your thesis with a statement summarizing the main
findings and suggesting possibilities for future research.
††††††††††† All references should be cited in this section in the numerical order in which they are presented in the paper. References should be cited in the body of the paper by number. Correct references are mandatory and no thesis will be accepted if references are in error. It is imperative that references never be copied from another publication and that you do not cite any references that you havenít read. The format for citations should be that used by Nutrition Reviews, samples of which follow:†
††††††††† and milk energy output of women in less-developed countries. In: Picciano
††††††††† M, Lonnerdal B, eds. Mechanisms regulating lactation and infant nutrient
†††††††† Academy Press, 1990;90-111.
MH, Gurthrie J, Frazao E. Nutrient contribution of food away from home. In:
Frazao E, ed.
Journal abbreviations are those used by the National Library of Medicine, such as those cited in PubMed or Medline.
††††††††† Any graphs, figures, tables, etc. should be incorporated directly into the text in the order that they are mentioned in the paper.
††††††††††† The paper should be a minimum of 25
typed double-spaced pages on 8 and 1/2 x 11 inch paper high quality paper.
Roman numerals should be used for pages preceding the Introduction, that is,
the Table of Contents is numbered ii. The introduction is page 1. Give or mail
two copies of the completed thesis to Terri Roma, Coordinator, Human Nutrition
Barry S. Kendler, PhD, FACN, CNS. CDN.
THE ROLE OF ANTIOXIDANTS IN REDUCING THE RISK
OF CANCER IN HUMANS
Davida K. Jones
A thesis submitted to the Graduate Faculty of
In partial fulfillment of the requirements
For the degree of
MASTER OF SCIENCE
††††††††††† In Human Nutrition
January 23, 1998
ADDENDUM TO THESIS GUIDELINES 09/06/07
The procedure for submission of the thesis is as follows:
1.††† Select a topic (or topics) that you are interested in researching.
2.††† E-mail the title of the topic to Dr. Kendler at: firstname.lastname@example.org
3.††† Upon receipt of the title, Dr. Kendler will either approve it as†
suitable, suggest modifications, or he will ask you to submit another title.
4.††† After approval of the title, an outline of the thesis should be†
emailed to Dr. Kendler for his approval and/or suggestions. Include your mailing address.
5.††† Following approval of the outline, a CAREFULLY written first draft should be e-mailed to Dr. Kendler, who will make corrections, grade the first draft, and mail it back to you. If all of the corrections on the first draft are implemented, you will have the opportunity of receiving a higher grade. If numerous corrections are made on the first draft, the final grade will be lower than if only a few corrections are made.
6.††† The final draft must be written using Microsoft Word and sent to†
Dr. Kendler on disc, so that it may be evaluated to ascertain that it was not plagiarized; that is, the thesis MUST be entirely original and†
portions of it must NOT be copied from any material in print.††
Accordingly, quotations are not allowed. The software program designed to detect plagiarism is called Turnitin. Any thesis found to be plagiarized will automatically result in a failure.
7.††† Allow at least three weeks for this process. If requested, Terri†
Roma will inform you of the thesis deadline. There are NO extensions for failing to meet the specified deadline and there will be NO expedited mailing by UB. Lack of preparation and proper planning on your part will not constitute an emergency for your thesis advisor or program coordinator.
8.††† Two copies of the properly bound, corrected thesis should be mailed to:
Human Nutrition Institute