The Bachelor’s thesis is a “proof of competence.” It is where you showcase your skills in your chosen area of Celtic Languages and Culture. The Bachelor’s thesis allows you to share the competences and knowledge that you have acquired over the three years of the degree programme. The thesis is linked to a Level 3 course and the content of the paper is relevant to one of the Celtic Languages and Culture specialisation clusters.

Form

Final assignments have a length of about 7500 words, including quotations and attachments. The final paper can have different shapes. Before you start, make sure that your supervisor has explicitly approved the form you have chosen.

Examples:

  • a detailed literature review
  • a review article
  • research in which different points of view are juxtaposed in a reasoned manner
  • a short scientific treatise (whether experimentally supported or not)
  • an annotated translation
  • an activity aimed at making a direct contribution to education at a specified level
  • a structured presentation of scientific information

In addition, in consultation with your supervisor, you may also choose a different form, if the agreed subject of the thesis gives cause to do so. For example:

  • an original website, with links
  • a recording on an audio and/or video carrier (audio, video, CD, DVD, etc.)
  • an execution or production plus documentation, etc.

Contents

Your final thesis is always linked to a course on level 3 and is linked to the content of a more in-depth package of the programme.

You decide for yourself in which block you want to start your final thesis (provided that a supervisor is available), and complete this within the same block of study. Contact your intended tutor (usually the teacher of the course to which the the thesis is linked) in good time to see if he or she is available in the intended block. The lecturer will guide you in the choice of subject, in drawing up a time schedule and throughout your writing process.

Working together

Your final thesis can, in consultation with the accompanying teacher, be the joint product of several students, with each student individually making a study effort of 210 hours. This working method is also recognizable (at the discretion of the teacher) in the form of the final project.

Study abroad

When you are abroad, you can produce the thesis there, for example by contacting the Utrecht supervisor by post or e-mail. You make agreements about the content and method of supervision before you start your study abroad.

Handing in your thesis

You must upload an electronic copy of the final version of your thesis to the digital thesis archive. In addition, you must at least submit an electronic final version via Blackboard. The supervisor may also ask you for a paper version.

Assessment

The lecturerchecks the progress of your thesis and evaluates the final result. A '/second reader' will be involved in the assessment, who will be sought by your supervisor. It is the task of this person to marginally test the final version of the thesis in terms of content and form. The final assessment of the final thesis is the result of careful consultation between the supervisor and the second reader.

The second reader may be from outside the Celtic languages and culture programme, for example if the subject of the thesis gives rise to this in terms of expertise.

IRISH - LITERARY SUBJECTS

  1. In sagaliterature the concept of grád écmaise often occurs, i.e. someone falls in love with another person without ever having seen this person. Investigate this story motive - is it always women, for example, who fall in love with men, or vice versa? Are there different rules for men and women, and what would they be based on? Does it have a certain function in the story?
  2. In the text Fingal Rónáin the queen falls in love with her stepson Máel Fothartaig. It seems as if she wants to force him to enter into a relationship with her. However, she does not do this herself, but by sending a maid. However, the girl does not dare to tell him in public what the queen wants from him. Eventually she does this when she is alone with him. See if and how the queen wants to force Máel Fothartaig (what terms are used in the text; is there a geis or ailges etc.), and under what circumstances must such a commandment be conveyed in order to be valid?
  3. The terms horny and genit are used interchangeably for wild men and dangerous women. Is it possible to find an original definition of these words in the literature?
  4. What is fiddler and how was it played? Nowadays it is often seen as a variant of the game table, but is this justified? And what is the role of vanfidchell in the texts? Is it played at a certain moment, under certain circumstances, and is it just a game or is there more to it? For example, does the outcome of a game of fidchell affect the rest of the story? This could also be investigated with regard to other games, or with regard to Welsh gwyddbwyll.
  5. In sagalitarianism, under certain (magical and negative) circumstances, objects from specific types of wood are used (for example, a certain kind of thorn was part of the pronunciation of a glam dícenn-satire, or a spit from the wood of the Rowan in the story of Cú Chulainn's death). What kinds of wood do you find, why are they precisely those kinds of wood and what kind of wood was used for what?

IRISH - LINGUISTIC TOPICS

  1. Glide vowels: in classical Old Irish the glide vowels -a- and -i- are used to show velarity or palatalisation respectively but not so in earlier sources, e.g.cumacht ae vs. cumachte or be i rid vs. berid . Examine the growth of the use of either of these glide vowels by comparing an early text corpus (e.g. Würzburg glosses) with a later text corpus (e.g. Milan glosses, St. Gallen glosses).
  2. Orthography and spelling: in early sources (Cambrai homily, Book of Armagh) length in vowels can be shown by doubling : ee (Cambrai) vs. later é . How much does this constitute two separate spelling conventions, an earlier one and a later one which became the established convention?
  3. Latin loanwords: examine one or more aspect of the Latin loanwords ( c - < p-, s- < Latin f -, Latin loanwords and syncope, unstressed vowels) in early Irish.
  4. Use of cases: the accusative and dative have many functions in Old Irish ( GOI 157-158, 160-162). Examine in detail one function in one of these cases. Do we see change in that function over time (i.e. in Middle Irish period)? Can we pinpoint with some accuracy when that change occurred?
  5. Comparison of adjectives: in the course of Middle Irish the use of the comparative form of the adjective is used instead of the superlative, e.g. Lucifer léom as dúru'Lucifer, the hardest lion' (not as dúram ). Can this be explain ed? Based on a corpus of Middle Irish (e.g. Saltair na Rann ) study this development.
  6. Suffixed, infixed and independent object pronouns: all three of the above types of object pronouns are found in Irish. Is it possible to explain why one type ousted (or replaced) another?
  7. Nouns and stems: during the course of early Irish some noun stems go over to another stem formation. For instance, OIr. dún originally an o-stem becomes an s-stem and DIL gives OIr. áin, án 'act of driving' as an a-stem and i-stem. Based on more examples can we see a pattern of change? Is the change unidirectional (o-stems to s-stems; i-stems to a-stems) or not?
  8. Verbs: in Middle Irish certain new verbal personal endings appeared which existed side-by-side with or replaced existing OIr. personal ending, for instance - ann/-enn (Pres. Ind. 3 sg. conj.); - mit/mait (Pres. Ind. 1pl. abs.) or -at/-et (Future 1sg. abs.). Based on a corpus of Middle Irish (e.g. Saltair na Rann ) examine closely one or more of these personal endings. What is their origin? Did they replace existing endings? Why?

WELSH - LITERARY SUBJECTS

  1. What was the role of the gatekeeper in early Welsh Arthurl literature (Pa gwr, Culhwch ac Olwen)?
  2. Examine the text Culhwch ac Olwen, and see which medieval Welsh customs have been incorporated into it.
  3. Was there a Goreu saga?
  4. See the texts about the Thirteen Treasures of the Island of Britain. What treasures are mentioned? Which of these are found in other stories? Are the treasures derived from objects from other countries or texts from classical antiquity, for example, or not?

WELSH - LINGUISTIC TOPICS

  1. MW ry + verb: grammars do give a vague meaning, like ry + preteritum makes a perfectum. But how is it possible that ry is also used in combination with the plusquamperfectum? In short, what does ry add to the meaning? Another aspect: old texts use ry more often than new ones (for example, this is a difference between the old and the new version of Culhwch and Olwen). In which meanings does ry become rarer and in which meanings is it preserved, and how does it work step by step? You could investigate this by means of one or two well-chosen texts from electronically available corpora (see: http://www.rhyddiaithganoloesol.caerdydd.ac.uk/).
  2. Texts often jumped wildly between present and past times: make an inventory of how one text does this and what the underlying motivation can be.
  3. If the subject of the sentence is a noun in the plural and it follows the verb, then the verb is in the 3 singular. The copula does not seem to adhere to it or does not always adhere to it. Examine this in a larger text and try to find out if there is a rule.
  4. Variation in - or -th- spelling of the bent preposition gan (gantawvs.ganthaw) and addition or omission of a -y- after the trunk (keissawvs.keissyaw) seems to show a dialect difference between North and South Wales. Investigate whether these criteria can be used to determine the origin of one or two well-chosen texts from electronically available corpora (see: http://www.rhyddiaithganoloesol.caerdydd.ac.uk/).

TEXTITIES

As a final paper, you can make a translation of a text that has never been translated, has been translated a long time ago, or has been translated very poorly, or has only appeared in modern Welsh, for example. In that case, always consult your supervisor first.

Forms and procedures Bachelor's thesis

Your Bachelor's thesis will be assessed following specific evaluation procedures. You can prepare for this by reading the following documents and explanations prior to starting your thesis.

All Bachelor's theses are assessed by two lecturers. If your supervisor is one of the lecturers teaching in the Bachelor's programme, then this person will also be the first assessor (or the 'examiner'). Theses are assessed using an assessment form. If there is a large difference of opinion between the first and second assessors, a third assessor may be engaged, who will always work with a separate assessment form.

Utrecht University takes all forms of academic deception very seriously. Utrecht University expects all students to observe the ethical standards of proper academic conduct. When they start writing their thesis, students must therefore submit the Plagiarism awareness declaration form as an acknowledgement that they have read the University's regulations regarding fraud and plagiarism. Lecturers or supervisors will report any suspected cases of fraud or plagiarism using the Plagiarism reporting form. 

Digital Thesis Archive

Once it has been assessed and graded, you must upload your undergraduate thesis to Utrecht University Library’s digital thesis archive: Scripties Online. If you do not meet this condition, you will not be able to graduate. The thesis archive is also the place where you may view other students’ theses.

Instructions

  1. Go to Scripties Online
  2. Log in with your Solis ID (student number) and password. You will then be directed to the page where you fill in you data.
  3. Fill in your student number. Your name and study programme will automatically be filled in.
  4. Fill in the rest of the form. This should be no problem. If you have any problems, you can consult the instruction manual via the 'help' button at the bottom of the page. Also read the tips below on what you should consider when uploading.
  5. Once you have uploaded your thesis, an email verifying this will automatically be send to the Student Desk Humanities.

What should you consider when uploading?

  • Your thesis must be approved by your supervisor before you can upload it to the archive.
  • Remember to list the title of your thesis in the language in which it was written. Write the abstract in the same language.
  • Your thesis will appear in the archive as soon as your exam date has been registered. If you have written a thesis together with another student, then it will be posted on the date on which the first of you has graduated.
  • The theses are available to the public unless you choose to prohibit publication. You may choose to block access to your thesis permanently or until a certain date, for example because you wish to continue your research on the subject. The thesis itself will not be displayed, but the bibliographic information will be visible to the public. You may also choose to block access to your thesis at a later date by sending an email to the Student Desk Humanities with your name, student number and the title of your thesis. If you are the co-author of the thesis, you must coordinate this with the other author or authors.
  • Exercise caution when including personal data -such as telephone numbers- in your thesis.
  • Theses should preferably be submitted in PDF format. Only those theses submitted in PDF format will remain permanently accessible and legible. You may also submit the thesis in MS Word format, but the archive cannot guarantee that it will be supported in the long term. If you would prefer to submit the thesis in a format other than PDF or MS Word, then you must inform Scripties Online in advance: support-igitur@uu.nl
  • Send an email to studentdesk.hum@uu.nl if you wish to upload a second thesis.