MS Theses

See the project list for ideas of projects you could pursue in our lab. You are also free to propose your own project topic, as long as it is related to the area of dependable systems. To apply, email us the following materials (incomplete applications will not be taken into consideration):

  1. Resume or Curriculum Vitae (please include descriptions of previous projects you have worked on);
  2. Scan of your transcript / grade sheets from both your undergraduate and MS education;
  3. Contact information (email+phone) for two references who have agreed to speak about you, your work, and your potential; at least one should be an EPFL professor (please do not send us open letters of recommendation; we will directly contact your reference provider and solicit a confidential letter);
  4. Areas / project topics you are interested in.

In your contact email, please confirm that you have read the following points made by our former chefs de section:

The purpose of a Master’s Project is to develop deeper knowledge, understanding, and capabilities in the context of the program of study and to demonstrate the ability to conduct independent work in research or advanced development. The Master’s Project is conducted on a topic related to the student’s program of study; its description is developed by the student, the supervising professor, and, in case the project is conducted in industry, the job supervisor.

In the case of a Master’s Project conducted within the company, issues of confidentiality must be addressed before the proposal can be accepted. It is understood that the work done by the student will remain property of the company, but the supervising professor will not sign any non-disclosure agreement. What will eventually constitute the Master’s Thesis is accessible to all (confidential MS theses, while not forbidden by EPFL, are not considered acceptable within IC) and, along with periodic discussions with or reports from the student, will form the basis for the professor’s evaluation of the work.

The Master’s Project must involve more than just learning: it must include a well defined component that tackles a new problem, one for which no accepted solution currently exists, but for which the student attempts to develop (and assess) a solution as part of the project. In the case of a project conducted within a company, this component must be applicable beyond the confines of the company – it must add to the knowledge base of the technical community. Whether or not a component meets the requirements of the section is determined by the supervising professor, with final authority resting with the section director and associate dean.

The Master’s Thesis is a description of the important parts of the Master’s project: its initial goals, its major steps, and its final results, including a discussion of lessons learned, alternatives identified in hindsight, and possible future steps. In the case of a project conducted in industry, it is understood that only part of the work conducted in the company can be viewed as research and development, so the Master’s Thesis need not cover all of the work done for the company. Instead, the thesis focuses on the parts of that work that demonstrate the work done in formulating the main problem, addressing it, developing solutions for it, and assessing these solutions.

More information appears in EPFL’s Best Practices for Masters Projects in Industry document.