Best Master’s Thesis Award

Purpose

To recognize and encourage graduate study and scholarship in public relations through an annual award for an outstanding master’s thesis.

Award

The winner receives a $2,000 grant. The winner’s faculty advisor receives a $1,000 cash grant.

Deadline

This program is currently not open for entries.

Criteria

Entries are judged on their contribution to the advancement of research-based knowledge in the field of public relations practice, philosophy, education and/or professional development.

Entries should test or develop theory within the public relations context; systematically test an applied public relations principle, case study or practice; analyze a legal, historical, or societal question in the field; or critically review an issue relevant to public relations practice, research and/or teaching.

Entries should conform to scholarly study and legal research methods. Potential significance of the study and quality of the research methodology and written presentation are also judged. These should have applicability beyond the confines of a given campus.

Rules

A blind judging procedure is followed so please pay close attention to the rules.

  • Application form must be completed online and submitted at www.instituteforpr.org
  • Since the judging is blind, it is important that you include the final title of your thesis or project in the application form, and that same title in the paper you submit. The paper should not contain any reference to the author’s name, the advisor’s name, the educational institution or other identifiable information. Leaving such identification visible in the thesis will be grounds for disqualification.
  • Your actual thesis or written project must be written in English language, submitted electronically, and in one file (Microsoft Word or other standard word processing program). Email submissions to Jenn Moyer are strongly encouraged, but we will accept submission by CD or DVD.
  • IMPORTANT: Include an executive summary of your thesis or project, written in English, as a separate electronic file. Judges rely heavily on the executive summary in first-round judging. The summary should provide a synopsis of your work and may not exceed 1,000 words. The executive summary should not contain any reference to the author’s name, the advisor’s name, the educational institution or other identifiable information. Leaving such identification visible in the executive summary will be grounds for disqualification.
  • The thesis must be authored as part of a master’s degree (i.e., MA, MS, MBA, MJ, MPR, etc.) awarded by an accredited college or university.
  • The thesis must by authored by one student. Group papers or projects are not allowed.
  • A letter of endorsement from a public relations faculty member of the student’s school attesting to the eligibility and qualifications of the entry must be included in the application packet. This letter must also be submitted electronically by the deadline, but in a separate file from the actual thesis or project.
  • All entries become the property of the Institute for Public Relations and cannot be returned. By entering the competition, you grant the Institute permission to publish your case on its website and through any other means.

Judging

The panel of judges includes representatives from the Institute for Public Relations and the Public Relations Division of the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication (AEJMC).

Address for Submission

Master’s Thesis Award
The Institute for Public Relations
University of Florida
PO Box 118400
Gainesville, FL 32611-8400

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