Roger Thayer Stone Center For Latin American Studies

Tulane University

Academic Programs

The M.A. Thesis

The M.A. thesis is intended to be a full explication of a significant problem using original sources, interviews, or analogous materials. Its length depends upon the expectations of the Thesis Committee. Before submitting the application for the thesis, students should discuss their plans with the Stone Center Graduate Advisor in order to insure that projects are designed with feasible scope, appropriately interdisciplinary content, and proper support and supervision.

Students should be advised that credit for thesis is awarded for one semester, but theses are rarely defined, researched, written and successfully defended in one semester. Ideally, a potential thesis topic should be developed as early as the first semester of coursework and a thesis director and committee structure planned by the end of the second semester. Preliminary field explorations and research should be conducted in the summer after the end of the second semester. The thesis topic should be advanced in concept during the third semester; a final thesis prospectus should be approved by both the thesis director and the full thesis committee by October 15 of the third semester; and the actual thesis should be written and defended by the appropriate deadlines in the fourth semester. Students should also be warned that the deadline for submission is in the middle, not at the end, of this fourth semester. The Graduate Advisor will work closely with the degree candidate to insure that the thesis is advanced and completed in the recommended time frame.

Application to Write Thesis

By March 1 of the second semester of residence, M.A. students must formally decide whether they will pursue the thesis or the non-thesis option. For those who commit to write a thesis, a thesis commitment form and 4-6 page prospectus (see Appendix) should be submitted to the Center Graduate Advisor no later than October 15 of the third semester of residence.

The Graduate Advisor, after reading and discussing the prospectus with the student, will facilitate meetings of students with recommended faculty directors for their theses, where students have not already chosen their director. Then, these faculty will help students restructure their prospectuses, give critical advice, affirm the viability of the research project, and agree formally to serve as either director or as a reader.

The Thesis Committee

The thesis committee consists of a director, ordinarily representing the field of the student’s primary concentration, and two other faculty members whose interests are germane to the project. The director must be tenure or tenure track rather than adjunct or visiting faculty. Consult with the Graduate Advisor for initial advice about committee selection and again before finalizing your committee.

The Thesis Style and Format

Information regarding proper thesis formatting, style guidelines, and submission deadlines can be found at the website of Tulane’s School of Liberal Arts Graduate School.

Registration and Credit for Thesis

Students who commit to write the thesis must register for LAST 8990 in the fourth semester in the LAST Center under the title of the thesis project (See the Graduate Advisor) and with the consent and approval of the thesis director. Thesis writers will earn 3 credits upon successful completion and defense of the thesis. Completion of the thesis is required for graduation. Students must also register for LAST 9980 (Master’s Research) in the fourth semester to maintain full-time student status.

The Defense

There is an oral defense of the M.A. thesis. The Graduate Advisor, the Thesis Committee and the degree candidate will work together to schedule the thesis defense. The actual defense date should be scheduled as early in the thesis semester as possible so as to avoid scheduling complications at the last minute. Since the defense must take place before the thesis is submitted and because the dates for submission are midway through the semester, the examination ordinarily occurs in early/mid March (or early/mid November for those rare instances when a thesis is completed in the Fall semester). All three committee members interview the candidate. Students usually find the defense a positive learning experience. The committee generally helps the author place the work in context and often offers advice on additional directions to take if the same topic is developed into a dissertation or for publication.

To find all necessary materials regarding procedures and deadlines, thesis application forms, formatting guidelines and applications for degree, visit the website of Tulane’s School of Liberal Arts Graduate School.

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Upcoming Events

Summer Reading at the Pebbles Center Algiers

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Celebrate and learn about Latin America with your kids through the Stone Center’s Pebble Center at the Algiers Regional branch of the New Orleans Public Library for bilingual story time.

Our summer story hour will take place in June, July, and August on the second Tuesday of every month at 10:30 AM. All books are read in English and Spanish and readings are followed by an activity based on the book. Past books include Counting Ovejas, Drum Dream Girl, and Mango, Abuela, and Me. Readings are free and open to the public. Recommended ages 0 – 5 and parents!

Story Hour Dates/Themes

June 13
TBA

July 11
TBA

August 8
TBA

Call for Papers: Association of Academic Programs in Latin America and the Caribbean 2018 Conference

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The Association for Academic Programs in Latin America and the Caribbean (AAPLAC) seeks session proposals for its 29th Annual Conference in New Orleans, Louisiana, February 21-24, 2018, hosted by the Stone Center for Latin American Studies at Tulane University.

This year’s theme, “Study Abroad: Meeting the Challenges of Cultural Engagement,” includes a variety of paper topics, including:

  • New Orleans after Katrina: The impact of the growing Hispanic population which came to help with rebuilding and has since stayed on
  • Interdisciplinary Institutional Content Assessment: How to best track what students are doing overseas and the benefits for our campuses
  • Global Partnerships through Peer Collaboration: How we can better work with institutions in Latin America and the Caribbean
  • Research Collaborations – U.S.-Latin America: Faculty led/student participation in on-site studies
  • Anglo-Hispanic Challenges: Cross-cultural understanding through experiential learning and study abroad
  • Strategic Partnerships: How we can enhance protocols between our schools in the US and those in Latin America and the Caribbean
  • Strengthening AAPLAC Relationships through Inter-Organization Mentoring: How we can enhance protocols amongst our schools in the US
  • Latina Empowerment: More women on study abroad programs: How we can take advantage of this bond between women of the North and the South
  • Rethinking Mobility: How is the student’s identity compromised/enhanced abroad?
  • Community-Based Partnerships: How students can learn as they engage with local communities in working type environments
  • Crossing Borders: The eternal quest for a global space as students interact with the other
  • Global Xenophobia on the Rise of Brexit/Trump? What is our role?
  • Cuba: Future U.S. Relations – Impact on Study Abroad

Please visit the Call For Papers web page to download the proposal template, timeline, and more information about the conference.

For questions, please contact Laura Wise Person at 862-8629 or lwise1_at_tulane.edu.