4. Curriculum change as a result of the introduction of the masters program: Designing and implementing a European online thesis training course

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LOTT (Leiden Online Thesis Training) is an online course for writing Masters theses at the English department of the University of Leiden (Netherlands). LOTT was a response to curriculum change following the Treaty of Bologna. A description is given of the goals of the course, its development and the role of existing (mainly American) online writing courses and research on thesis writing. An overview is also given of academic writing theory and the principles of genre analysis according to which LOTT was designed. Finally, a discussion is provided of the problems, and their solutions, of online writing courses. It is concluded that while the course is a success, difficulties continue, mainly as a result of unfamiliarity with online courses. “I don’t understand why people are frightened of new ideas. I'm frightened of the old ones.” (John Cage)


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