Audio Communication Group

Notes and rules for theses

The final thesis is a written scientific paper prepared largely independently (i.e. supervised) and written alone by the final candidate on a given or self-proposed and approved research topic. It includes a written paper, a digital appendix, and an oral presentation.


Currently announced topics are related to ongoing research projects at the department and are thus embedded in a larger research context and research team (see Open Topics). The list of calls for papers is continuously updated.

Externally supervised work

Topics can also be offered by non-university institutions (such as Max Planck Institutes, Fraunhofer Institutes) or by the research departments of relevant companies. External supervision is possible if the scientific character of the work is made clear in the exposé and if sufficiently qualified on-site supervision is ensured. The thesis is then jointly supervised by the external institution and the department and reviewed by the on-site supervisor and a TUB professor, in the AKT program usually Prof. Weinzierl.


After the selection of the topic, the content, method and time schedule of the planned thesis must be outlined in an exposé. See the instructions for writing an exposé.

Form of the thesis

The thesis is submitted in the form of a scientific publication (journal or conference article or monograph). The form of the publication will be determined together with the supervisor. The layout and scope of the paper will then follow the guidelines of the chosen medium, e.g. the journal or the publisher in the case of a monograph. In addition, the cover sheet, affidavit and table of contents must be added to the paper according to the guidelines of the TU Berlin.

After submitting the Master's thesis, the editor and supervisor decide whether the text will actually be submitted to the respective medium (journal, conference, publisher). If further work is required for this, it can be honored with 6 additional credit points within the framework of the module "Scientific Writing". Alternatively, selected papers can be published via the TUB research data repository (DepositOnce).

Citation method

The citation style used in the paper is also usually dictated by the publication format agreed upon at the beginning. If this is not the case, we recommend the APA Style, which is equally common in the natural sciences and the humanities.

Digital appendix

In addition to the written work, a digital appendix is submitted to the Audio Communication Group (to your supervisor). This contains

  • The thesis as PDF
  • A research diary (see below)
  • Primary research data (see below)
  • Full texts of the publications listed in the bibliography as a PDF with the naming convention AuthorLastName (Year)_PublicationTitle.pdf.
  • The bibliography printed in the paper as a separate file, preferably as a text file in BibTeX syntax or RIS file format.

Research diary

Depending on the format of the thesis, it is possible that not all information can be included in the main body of the text. This information, agreed upon between the editor and the supervisor, can become part of the digital appendix in the form of a research diary, such as:

  • Results of the literature search
  • Documentation of experiments, measurements, listening tests and surveys
  • Documentation of analyses of raw data

Even if a research diary is not submitted, it may be helpful to keep one as a basis for writing the thesis.

Primary Research Data

Primary research data is defined as all data necessary to reproduce the thesis. Research data must be documented in the form of a readme file or through the research diary. Research data includes, for example:

  • Self-generated data (audio recordings, impulse responses, results of listening tests and surveys, etc.).
  • Data from other sources (as above, but from public or closed third-party sources)
  • Scripts and software for generating raw data (measurement scripts, questionnaires, etc.)
  • Scripts and software for the analysis of the raw data (processing, statistical analysis, etc.).

These data can often be included as digital appendices (supplemental material) when published in journals or alternatively in the TUB research data repository (DepositOnce) as an accompanying electronic publication.

Final presentation

After completion of the thesis, a 20-minute public presentation with subsequent discussion is part of the examination. The presentation usually takes place in the research colloquium, for which an appointment can be arranged immediately after submission of the thesis. The presentation should generally cover the following aspects, with time given as a rough guide:

  • Motivation and status of the research (approx. 5 minutes).
    • What is the thesis concerned with?
    • What are the research question and results important for?
    • What relevant previous work exists?
    • What is the novelty value of the work?
    • On what theoretical foundations is the work based?
    • Which hypotheses were tested (if relevant)?
  • Methods and results (approx. 12 minutes)
    • What was done?
    • How was it done?
    • What are the results?
  • Discussion and outlook (approx. 3 minutes)
    • How are the results to be classified?
    • Were the hypotheses confirmed?
    • What is the progress in knowledge compared to the state of research?
    • In which direction could further work be done?

Often not all results of the work can be presented in 20 minutes. In this case, the presentation can focus on the most important and relevant results.


The details of what is looked for in the evaluations can be found in the evaluation criteria for theses. The written elaboration and related work is included in the grade at 75%, the presentation at 25%.

As a service you will find:

Staff members have access to several databases maintained at the department as electronic resources, including:

    a full-text database of the most important periodicals and conference proceedings on audio technology
    the International Documentation of Electroacoustic Music, an index of over 23,000 works of electroacoustic music and sound art
    a media library with over 2000 CDs, DVDs, analog and digital tapes