Studies at IIK

Specialization Project - IIK

Specialization Project at IIK (Trondheim, TTM4502)

Below you can find practical information about the specialization project at IIK (Trondheim). For information about the course content, the learning outcome, the learning method and activities, and the examination arrangement, refer to the course description in the course catalogue.

This course is mandatory for all master's students at IIK in Trondheim in their last year (except double-degree students from the University of Bologna) and it is intended as a pre-project for the master's thesis in the spring.

During the pre-project, students should get acquainted with the selected topic and elaborate their own research project based on the original topic proposal. Examples of tasks include getting a thorough understanding of the challenge, conducting a literature survey, getting familiar with and/or evaluating possible tools and methods, and establishing a plan for the work towards the thesis.

The expected outcome of the pre-project is a short report that shall serve as a basis for the master's thesis project and enable feedback on your work so far.

Proposing and/or selecting project topics and allocation of project topics

The process leading to the selection of project topics by and eventually the allocation of project topics to students is run in the period April-June the study year prior to the specialization project and master's thesis. That process is divided in 4 phases:

  1. Submission of project topic proposals The department invites its employees in scientific positions and external contacts to submit project topic proposals. Students are also invited and encouraged to familiarize themselves with ongoing research activities and to contact a professor at the department to discuss and develop their own proposal in collaboration with that professor. This gives the students the opportunity to influence the topic according to their own interests and studies. If approved, the proposal is reserved to the student(s) that has/have proposed it.
  2. Quality insurance All the project topic proposals are assessed with respect to their academic-technical content, scope and level.
  3. Selection of project topics The approved project topic proposals are distributed to the students who are expected to take the specialization project the following study year. Each student should register a selection of 5 topics in his/her order of preference. Students that have proposed their own topic may register a different selection of topics if they prefer. It is not possible to reserve a topic in this phase.
  4. Allocation of project topics Topics are allocated on a best-effort basis; that is we will try to give all of you a good match taking into account your preferences, those of the other students, and the supervision capacity of the supervisors/professors.

Projects in cooperation with external companies or institutions

For topics supervised by or carried out in cooperation with a company or external institution, an agreement must be established. See more information about this here.

Confidential reports or reports with delayed publication should be avoided. Note that an industry-sponsored topic is not an option at NTNU: "The student is not to receive wages or similar compensation from the organization". IIK requires a commitment from the external party to provide the supervision. 

Carrying out the project

The project has a number of work items, see the course description for details. All of these should be addressed.

The project also has as its objective to train the students in some generic project skills. To support you in acquiring these, there will be arranged some related activities. Participation is optional but highly recommended.

Writing the project report

Remember that it is your responsibility to contact the supervisor - do not wait for the supervisor to contact you. You should plan for weekly meetings with your supervisor, where the responsible professor for the project joins monthly.

The report must take the following form:

  • It must follow the predefined structure given in the report template (and presented in the introduction meeting).
  • Maximum length of 15 pages, everything included (also for those writing with fellow students).
  • The template for the project report can be accessed from Blackboard.
  • The assessment criteria for the project can be found on Blackboard.

Submitting the project report

The deadline for submission of the project reports is normally set by the department approximately 3 weeks prior to the presentation date. The reports are further allocated to the external eavluators and responsible professors. Information about the submission date will be given at the beginning of the semester.

The project reports should be submitted in Inspera

Presentating the project

A formal oral presentation of the specialization project is mandatory to pass the course. The presentation date is scheduled by the exam office and published on the course page, as with any other exam. Keep an eye on this page and note the date.

It is important that you inform us as soon as possible if the date collides with another exam, or if you for some other reason cannot make it.

The presentation day is scheduled to the end of the semester. The schedule for the presentation day will be published on Blackboard a few days beforehand.

The presentation format is as follows:

  • 20 minutes per project - 15 minutes for presenting, 5 minutes for questions from the audience.
  • All issues dealt with in the project should be presented.
  • Students are expected to ask questions to their peers. 
  • Attendance to the entire presentation day is compulsory.

You can find NTNU's presentation templates here.


The course is evaluated to passed / not passed based on the submitted written project report. Note that in order for the report to be graded as passed, all the work items c)–f) and h) – see the course description for details – must be addressed in a passable manner. Similar for item g) if the planned thesis is intended to use spesific tool(s).

Each report will be evaluated by an external evaluator and the professor responsible for the actual project. The deadline for the evaluation will start running from the presentation date - not the submission date. You will be given a brief written feedback on the report. The specialization project is not marked, you will either pass or not pass.

In Blackboard you can find information about the assessment criteria for the specialization project.

Retake procedure

If you do not pass on the ordinary submission, you will be given a chance to submit a revised version of your project report. Normally you are given 2.5 weeks after the evaluation is announced to improve the report, before you submit in Inspera again. The submission deadline will be announced at the beginning of the semester.

You do not have to redo the presentation.



Last updated: Apr 13 2021


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