You Asked If My MA Thesis Was Good Enough To Warrant The MA Degree

MA Thesis

23 July 2017

(I followed up on this topic in my post dated 13 Aug 2017 The Grades of My MA Thesis)

I would like to first clarify that I had already received my letter of invitation to take part in the 2006 commencement ceremony by March 2006. Please see below for the supporting documents: “Congratulations! Commencement Letter” and “Good News! email.”

Someone asked/commented – “what’s the big deal about my MA thesis?” / I think too bigly about my own MA Thesis – it is after all, only an MA thesis. 

Precisely, an MA thesis should be compared to other MA theses, not a magnum opus done with strong funding and research assistant support. But I believe that my thesis could be revised and reworked into a book. One of the two NUS-appointed examiners wrote that my thesis “will undoubtedly stand as the definitive account” on Raffles Place. 

My thesis was about the architectural and urban history of Raffles Place (originally named Commercial Square) from 1822 to the 1920s. I researched on the development of Raffles Place through its first 100 years of history. I can easily continue the research up to the present day by using the methodology that I came up with in the course of my MA thesis research.

Attached below are the two examiners’ reports. Unfortunately, I was not given the cover sheets of the two reports, back in November 2005, when NUS conveyed the examination outcome of my thesis to me. 

Hence you will see that the two examination reports have “no head, but only the tail.” For the avoidance of doubt, I stress that I am not withholding any part of each examination report. I exhibit them here as I was given each report back in November 2005 – only section B. I was finally able to read section A in 2013, in the course of litigation. I can’t exhibit them here because section A was not given to me in November 2005, but only about 8 years later in 2013 in litigation. I put the 2005 examiners’ evaluation here to show you that the examiners gave my MA thesis positive remarks.

To those who say that perhaps the quality of my MA thesis was bad enough not to warrant an MA degree, or that I now cow peh cow bu (cry father cry mother) to milk the situation through litigation to gain a free pass to an academic qualification which allegedly, I do not deserve, please don’t be too hasty to judge.

I wish I could share with you, the grade that each of the NUS-appointed examiners gave me, to dispel your doubts. I would then have attained a sense of vindication for myself. But unfortunately, I cannot say more, because my real grades were only revealed in the course of litigation. For the avoidance of doubt, NUS did not fail my MA thesis. However, the denial of my MA degree means that I continue to carry the stigma of being branded as a student who had failed her MA degree.

Examiner’s Report No. 2 (Section B only) with “definitive account” comment on line 5, paragraph 1, first of two pages. 
(Section A of the  Report in which my grade was indicated was not given to me back in Nov 2005.) 
(Please note that the document came naturally tilted as NUS gave it to me in November 2005.)

Examiner’s Report No. 1 (Section B only) 
(Section A of the  Report in which my grade was indicated was not given to me back in Nov 2005.) 

The Congratulations! Commencement Letter (6 March 2006) and Good News! Email (6 April 2006)

Thank you for your kind attention. Happy Sunday!


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