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Master Theses

Information about master theses at the Institute for Accounting, Auditing and Analysis

We are pleased about your interest in writing a master thesis at our institute. Please read the following information carefully and completely!

General information about master theses at our institute

The number of supervised theses depends on the free capacities at our institute. If the number of applications exceeds our capacities, we will select applicants according to their academic performance, their specialisation courses and the quality of their topic proposals (if applicable).

We recommend the attendance of the following courses offered by us for writing a master thesis at our institute:

  • Especially Empirical Research in Accounting, Auditing and Analysis and
  • Accounting Theory and/or
  • Accounting for M&A Transactions and/or
  • Projektkurs and/or
  • Advanced Accounting

The confirmation of supervision expires, if a student does not respond within one week after it has been sent out to him. Applications that were not accepted during one period will not be carried forward to the next period. Thus, if a student is still interested in writing a thesis at our chair, he or she has to apply again before the next application deadline.

Theses at our institute can be written in English or German.

Please consider the formal requirements of our institute when writing your thesis.

Application for a master thesis at our institute

Your application for a master thesis will adhere to the following temporal sequence:

Before Registration: When applying for a master thesis at our institute, you can state up to two topic preferences. You can choose them from the tasks that are provided in our topic pool. Alternatively, you can also suggest own topics and research questions. In case you decide to suggest one or several own topics, please write a paragraph that explains the motivation, research question and the research methodology of your project idea. Further, please add at least two relevant sources (such as research papers from leading academic journals like the Journal of Accounting and Economics, Journal of Accounting Research, The Accounting Review, Contemporary Accounting Research, Review of Accounting Studies, European Accounting Review or Accounting, Organizations and Society) in order to prove the relevance of your idea. We recommend that you actively search for topics in the research fields of our research assistants (please refer to each assistant's profile). Please note that we can only consider your own topic suggestions if you include them in your application. In case your suggestion has been developed as part of the course "Empirical Research", please indicate this during the application. If you have topic-related questions, please contact Dr. Ann-Kristin Großkopf. In case of administrative questions, please contact the institute's management (Evelyn Gräfin Pachta). We will try to consider your preferences, but cannot guarantee that you will receive one of your preferences.

Application: You can apply for a master thesis at six dates (01.01., 01.03., 01.05., 01.07., 01.09., 01.11.) each year via our online tool. In your application, please state the title(s) of the tasks from the topic pool that you prefer. Please also send your grade record to or hand it in personally during office hours.

Confirmation of Supervision: After a review of your application, you will receive a confirmation or decline of supervision. In case of a confirmation, you will be assigned to a supervisor. Please contact your supervisor and schedule a date for a first personal meeting with him or her (which will be schedule the following week). In this meeting, you supervisor will inform you about the thesis topic you were assigned to and discuss it with you. Afterwards, you are supposed to formulate a proposal (exposé) about your topic which should cover the research question, its motivation and relevance, the research methodology you plan to apply, and at least two high-quality sources. In a second meeting with your supervisor, you will receive feedback on your proposal, after which your thesis will be officially registered with the ISC. The date of this second meeting is the official starting date of your thesis, so you will have 22 more weeks to submit your thesis. In case you do not receive a confirmation of supervision, you are invited to apply for a thesis in the following period.

Thesis colloquium: We offer a voluntary master colloquium to all students currently writing a master thesis at our chair. The goal of the voluntary colloquium is that you can show the status quo of your work and receive feedback on it. Prof. Sellhorn as well as two or more research assistants will be present, as well as other students that write a master thesis at our institute. Each student will be given 15 minutes for presentation and 15 minutes for discussion.

Further working period: Of course you can ask questions during the next weeks of your working period. Please contact your responsible research assistant.