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Student Research

   
     
 

        •  Doctoral Program
        •  Master's Program

DISSERTATIONS
THESIS, RESEARCH STUDY, PROJECT AND INTERNSHIP OPTION
ADVANCEMENT TO CANDIDACY
MASTER'S PROPOSAL EXAMINATION
EXTERNAL EXAMINER FOR DISSERTATIONS
DOCTORAL FINAL EXAMINATION
ASSESSMENT OF DISSERTATIONS
ASSESSMENTOF THESIS/RESEARCH STUDY/PROJECT
DISTRIBUTION OF DISSERTATIONS, THESES, RESEARCH STUDIES AND PROJECTS
 
     
 
 
 
     
  STUDENT RESEARCH  
     
           
    1   PROGRAM COMMITTEE  
           
        Doctoral Program  
           
        1.1

Program Committee must be appointed for each Doctoral student to supervise his/her study program and dissertation. Appointment must be made within the first two semesters of study. The Committee should consist of a minimum of three members (at least one from the Academic Unit), including the Advisor, who will be its Chairperson. Committee members shall be recommended by the Advisor through the Field/Area of Study Coordinator for approval by the School Dean. A ‘Doctoral Program Committee Appointment Form' must be submitted to the Registry.

 
               
        1.2 The Chairperson of a Program Committee must be a full-time Faculty member of the rank of Assistant, Associate or Full Professor. He has the main responsibility of guiding the student research.

A Program Committee Chairperson who has retired/resigned from AIT may be appointed as Adjunct faculty to continue serving as Chairperson of the Program Committee for a maximum of one year, with the following conditions:
  • The student has submitted his paper to a journal and sent the dissertation for External Examiner’s review;
  • The retired/resigned faculty is available for consultation at no cost to AIT.
 
               
        1.3 Faculty scheduled to leave within two years from the semester of admission of the Doctoral student should appoint a Co-Chairperson from the very beginning.  
               
        1.4 Short-term Visiting Faculty and Adjunct faculty members are ineligible as Chairpersons of the Doctoral Program Committee. They may be appointed as members only.  
               
        1.5 An External Expert may be appointed as member of the Program Committee, without necessarily being appointed to faculty status (please see section 4.2)  
               
        1.6

Towards the end of each semester, a full-time Doctoral student should present to the Program Committee, at a formal meeting, his or her progress on (i) coursework; (ii) research; and (iii) the qualifying examination for advancement to candidacy, when this is held.

Through this formal presentation, the Program Committee will evaluate the student's eligibility to proceed to the next semester of study. In order to justify the time spent, a Doctoral student not carrying a full load of coursework must submit an abstract of the progress of his or her dissertation work to the Program Committee.

A non-resident/part-time doctoral student's Program Committee shall meet with the student at the Institute at least once a year to assess progress in coursework and/or research, and to evaluate eligibility to proceed to the next year of study. The student should submit a progress report in each semester to provide a documented evidence of progress

A detailed report using the standard reporting form is then submitted by the Program Committee to the Doctoral Progress Review Committee (DPRC). If, in the view of the DPRC, a student's progress is not satisfactory, a recommendation for probation will be made to the Academic Senate for consideration and action.

 
             
        1.7 It is the responsibility of the Chairperson of the Program Committee to arrange the qualifying examination of his/her doctoral advisee.  
           
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        Master's Program  
               
        1.8 A Program Committee to supervise the thesis/research study/project shall be appointed by the School Dean for all students registered for the Master's degree not later than the middle of the third semester of study. The Chairperson of a Program Committee must be a full-time Faculty member of the rank of Assistant, Associate or Full Professor.  
               
        1.9 An Adjunct Faculty member may serve as an ordinary member of a committee with the approval of the School Dean.  
               
        1.10 Normally, the Chair and at least one member of a Program Committee are faculty members from the School where the student is enrolled. In exceptional cases and with approval of the School Dean, the Chair of the Program Committee may come from another School with the condition that a Co-Chairperson will be appointed from the School where the student is enrolled.  
               
        1.11 The Program Committee is responsible for supervising the student's program (and particularly his/her research) and for determining the content of the program. The Committee may require the student to take particular courses or to complete credits beyond the minimum number presented in the official degree requirements.  
             
        1.12 The Committee consists of three members, among whom one is the Chairperson. Where additional expertise is required; it can be sought without commitment to Committee membership. An External Expert may however be appointed as member of the Program Committee (see section 4.2). For the project option, a Committee consisting of only two AIT faculty members is allowed (Academic Senate, 25 Nov 2009).  
             
        1.13 The School Dean has the prerogative, after consultation with the Field of Study/Area of Study Coordinator, to revise the membership of a Program Committee.  
           
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    2   EXTERNAL EXPERT MEMBERSHIP IN THE PROGRAM COMMITTEE  
               
        2.1 In cases where the research requires external expertise from business and industry, the Program Committee composition can be made more flexible by allowing an External Expert to be a member of the Committee, without necessarily being appointed to faculty status. This is mainly based on the principle that the research work would benefit from the expertise, experience and practical perspective of the external expert, thus enhancing the quality of the research ( AS00.56 ).  
               
        2.2 The procedures/guidelines for External Expert appointment are as follows:  
               
          i) He/She should have the required expertise on the subject area, and must be recommended by all members of the Program Committee, endorsed by the Field/Area of Study Coordinator, and approved by the School Dean.  
               
          ii) If a Bachelor's degree holder, he/she should normally have 10 years work experience in the relevant area; if a Master's degree holder, should normally have 5 years experience; If a doctoral degree holder, should normally have 3 years work experience.  
               
          iii) Should be a non-voting member only  
               
          iv) The External Expert's presence during the thesis examination period is optional.  
               
          v) The name of the external expert should appear on the thesis itself together with the other Program Committee members as “External Expert's Name (External Expert)”. His/Her contact information should be included in the student's record and be kept by the concerned Field/Area of Study for future reference.  
           
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    3   DISSERTATIONS  
               
        3.1 Dissertations are submitted as part of the requirements for the Doctoral degree program. It is worth 66 credits for the regular doctoral program. For the DBA program, the dissertation is worth 60 credits. Credits for dissertation may be registered as early as second semester as long as the total number of registered credits does not exceed 15.  
               
        3.2 The dissertation must demonstrate scholarly distinction and show that, through the research, the candidate has contributed to the advancement of knowledge in his/her chosen field.  
               
        3.3

The Academic Senate has agreed that there is a social obligation on the part of the Doctoral candidate to publish at least one paper from the dissertation as the dissemination of knowledge from the dissertation itself is highly inefficient ( AS79.8 ). The scientific paper based on the dissertation must be published in or accepted by an international refereed journal before the final examination ( AS02.15 ). For the DBA program, there should be one publishable comprehensive case with a teaching note accepted by a reputable case clearing house or a peer reviewed journal that publishes management cases. Alternatively, there should be one published research article in a refereed professional journal.

 
               
        3.4 The following are the accepted criteria for classifying the journal as internationally refereed:  
               
           

•  Has an international editorial board;
•  Has international diversity of authorship;
•  Appears in major databases;
•  Has a reputable publisher;
•  Has SCI, SSCI or COMPENDEX Number

 
               
         

A doctoral student is required to seek formal approval from the Program Committee Chair before sending his/her scientific paper for publication in any journal.

 
               
        3.5 The following are the criteria for evaluating case clearing houses:  
           

•  Has an international peer review process (not in-house)
•  Has an international editorial board;
•  Has international diversity of authorship;
•  Has a reputable publisher;

 
               
          A doctoral student is required to seek formal approval from the Program Committee Chair before sending his/her scientific paper for publication in any case clearing house .  
               
        3.6 The Program Committee must complete the ‘Doctoral Student Publication Form' and forward to DPRC for review as soon as the journal paper is accepted for publication.  
               
        3.7 External Examiners are required for the Doctoral degree, with the duty to read the dissertation and report their opinion to the Program Committee (please see section 4.9).  
           
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    4   THESIS, RESEARCH STUDY, PROJECT AND INTERNSHIP OPTION  
               
        4.1 A Master's degree student must (unless a special permission for a delay has been obtained) register for a research study or project not later than the end of the last week of the third semester and for thesis not later than the end of the last week of the second semester, after consultation with Advisor or Program Committee. The number of thesis/research study/project credits to be registered must be determined in consultation with the Advisor. Transfer between options requires the approval of the student's Program Committee and of his/her School Dean (see section 6.9.1). For the Professional Master degree program, an internship worth 9 credits is normally required.  
               
        4.2 A thesis is worth 22 credits, a research study is equivalent to 10 credits, a project is worth 6 credits and an internship is given 9 credits.  
               
        4.3 Thesis report is submitted as part of the requirements for the thesis option for the Master's program. The thesis work must be carried out under the supervision of the student's Program Committee at the Institute or at another location approved by the committee.  
               
        4.4 AIT students participating in exchange and dual degree programs and carrying out a project at the partner institution, are required to have their defense at AIT in the presence of the Program Committee. The project report format should conform to the guidelines set by AIT for research reports.  
               
        4.5 AIT students undertaking internships in other institutions either as part of an exchange program or otherwise would normally not be allowed credits for the internship work nor would such internship work be treated as equivalent to a project unless the following conditions are fulfilled:  
               
          i) The organization in which the internship was done agrees to allow the student to produce a full report that include all the information and data relevant to the research problem; and  
               
          ii) An AIT faculty member has participated, in his/her capacity as the principal guide, in the formulation of the research problem, guided the student in the execution of the project, and, based on such participation, accepted the report based on the internship as satisfying the criteria for a project or research work.  
               
        4.6 Students are encouraged to produce thesis of publishable quality, in excellent English, and to follow professional journal format.  
               
        4.7 A copy of the thesis/research study/project/internship report must be received by each member of the student's Program Committee at least seven days before the examination.  
               
        4.8

The thesis, research study, project or internship grade will not be included in the computation of the Grade Point Average (GPA).

 
           
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    5   QUALIFYING EXAMINATION  
               
        5.1 Before a student can be advanced to candidacy for the degree of Doctor, he/she must (from January 2009 intake and onwards):  
               
          i) satisfactorily complete the coursework and cGPA requirements; and  
               
          ii) have passed a qualifying examination, conducted by his/her Program Committee  
               
           
to demonstrate a broad knowledge of the chosen field of study through a written examination  
               
           
to give a public seminar on the dissertation topic followed by a defense of his/her dissertation proposal in an oral examination  
               
          A meeting between the student and Program Committee prior to the oral examination of the dissertation proposal is required.  
               
        5.2 The dissertation proposal shall include:  
               
          i) a comprehensive literature survey in almost final form suitable for inclusion in the dissertation;  
               
          ii) a discussion of the research to be undertaken and of the experimental techniques to be used; and  
               
          iii) a request for AIT resources giving specifications of equipment required for the project (including full working drawings of all equipment to be made in the workshop) together with a list of materials required and of other assistance needed, if any.  
               
        5.3 The dissertation proposal shall be typed in the same format approved for thesis proposals. One copy shall be made available to each member of the student's Program Committee.  
               
        5.4 The qualifying examination shall be conducted by the student's Program Committee at the earliest opportunity after the completion of the coursework requirement, but not sooner than one week after each member has received a copy of the dissertation proposal.  
               
        5.5 All members of the Program Committee should be in attendance during the qualifying examination.  
           
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    6.   ADVANCEMENT TO CANDIDACY  
             
        6.1 Before a student can be advanced to candidacy for the degree of Doctor, he/she must:  
               
          i) satisfactorily complete the coursework and cGPA requirements; and  
               
          ii) have passed a qualifying examination, conducted by his/her Program Committee.  
               
        6.2 A full-time student must take his/her advancement to candidacy not later than the end of the third semester. A non-resident student must take his/her advancement to candidacy not later than the end of the fourth semester.  
               
        6.3 The Program Committee shall report the result on the 'Advancement to Candidacy Examination Form' to the School Dean and the Registry. A student may be re-examined on one occasion only.  
               
        6.4 A student may be re-examined on one occasion only.  
               
        6.5 If the Program Committee does not recommend advancement to candidacy, a report shall be submitted to the Doctoral Progress Review Committee. A student who fails to pass the qualifying examination and who is not eligible to be re-examined will be recommended for dismissal.  
               
        6.6 Students from the Integrated Master to Doctoral Program who fail to advance to candidacy by the end of the fifth semester may exit the program with a Master degree upon successful completion of 10 credits research study.  
               
        6.7 The Registry will record the date of a student's advancement to candidacy on the transcript of records.  
           
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    7.   MASTER'S PROPOSAL EXAMINATION  
           
        The Program Committee must arrange for a thesis proposal examination to be held at the end of the Master's degree student's second semester or at the beginning of the third semester.  
               
    8.   STUDENT RESEARCH PLAGIARISM CHECK  
           
        To guard against plagiarism, all student research reports will be subjected to electronic plagiarism check before they are sent out to External Examiners (for doctoral candidates only) and before final defense is conducted. The detailed guidelines and process for final plagiarism check is in Section V, item B of the P&P AA 4-1-1: Academic Integrity in Research and Publication http://www.ait.ac.th/administration/policies-and-procedures/AA/AA-4-1-1  
           
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    9   EXTERNAL EXAMINER FOR DISSERTATIONS  
               
        9.1 An External Examiner shall be recommended by the Program Committee for approval by the Doctoral Progress Review Committee, which shall subsequently recommend to the Vice President for Academic Affairs for appointment. The recommendations must be accompanied by an accomplished ‘Request for Appointment of External Examiner Form', the proposed External Examiner's curriculum vitae and list of publications in English, and the candidate's dissertation abstract. The External Examiner may attend the final comprehensive examination of the candidate.  
               
        9.2 The External Examiner should normally not be a former AIT Faculty who has served the Institute on full-time or part-time assignments or has taught a course at AIT during the previous five years. He/She should preferably be at Professor/Associate Professor or equivalent rank. The proposed External Examiner should have adequate experience in supervising doctoral students and must be actively involved in research as evident from their publications in the international refereed journals. Non-doctoral degree holders may be appointed as External Examiners only if they are currently full professors or of equivalent rank in recognized academic or research
institutions.
 
               
        9.3 The External Examiner will be asked to comment on the extent to which the dissertation satisfies the criteria for assessment (contain evidence of scholarly distinction and a contribution to the advancement of knowledge in the chosen field of study) and to submit the assessment of the dissertation on a ‘Report of External Examiner' form, stating one of the following:  
               
          i) satisfactory and meets the normal requirements for a Doctoral dissertation (comments attached); or  
               
          ii) acceptable after revision according to comments attached;  
           


( ) I would like to see the response of the student on my comments;

( ) I request the Program Committee to ensure that my comments on the dissertation are addressed by the student. It is not necessary to send the response to me.

 
               
          iii) to be re-submitted for a further review after the attached comments have been answered; or  
               
          iv) not acceptable for reasons attached.  
               
        9.4 In all cases where the dissertation is assessed as satisfactory , the Doctoral candidate, in coordination with the Chairperson of his/her Program Committee, is obliged to respond to comments received from his/her External Examiner, to assure the External Examiner that his/her comments have been appreciated , and incorporated into the text, to the extent deemed necessary by the candidate's committee (Senate, 25 November 1998) .  
               
        9.5 In all cases where the dissertation is assessed as acceptable after revision by the External Examiner, it is required that the Doctoral candidate, in coordination with the Chairperson of his/her Program Committee, satisfy the requirements specified by the External Examiner by preparing a detailed statement and/or producing evidence of revisions as deemed necessary by his/her Program Committee (Senate, 25 November 1998) .  
               
        9.6 In all cases where the dissertation must be re-submitted for further review , it is required that the Doctoral candidate, in coordination with the Chairperson of his/her Program Committee, satisfy the requirements specified by the External Examiner by preparing a detailed statement and/or producing evidence of revision. Only after the External Examiner's written acceptance is received, can in such cases the final examination and defense conducted (Senate, 25 November 1998) .  
               
        9.7 The examining committee must have the full written comments of the External Examiner and the "Report of External Examiner" before the comprehensive examination is held. The student must address all points raised by the External Examiner. If the External Examiner is of the opinion that the dissertation does not wholly satisfy the criteria for assessment, and if this opinion is at variance with the view of the examining committee, the committee shall seek the opinion of a second External Examiner (whose appointment will be made according to 4.9.2 above).  
               
        9.8 An External Examiner cannot be involved in a doctoral student’s research work and journal/conference publications that are considered to be a part of the student’s graduation requirements.  
               
        9.9 Payment of the External Examiner will be arranged on receipt of the completed "Report of External Examiner". The External Examiner will also receive a hardbound copy of the dissertation.  
           
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    10   DOCTORAL FINAL EXAMINATION  
               
        10.1 Before a final oral examination of a student for the degree of Doctor can be conducted by the Program Committee, a student must satisfy the requirement for residence at AIT (see section 5.3).  
               
        10.2 The Program Committee will conduct the final examination which will consist of:  
               
          i) an assessment of the dissertation; and  
               
          ii) an oral examination.  
               
        10.3  The oral examination must be publicly announced within the Institute at least one week before the date of the examination. The External Examiner(s) and any other member of Faculty may attend. Other persons may attend as observers.  
               
        10.4 The examination committee must have the full written comments in English of the External Examiner(s) and the “Report of External Examiner” before the oral examina­tion is held. The student must address all points raised by the external examiner(s).  
               
        10.5 The committee Chairperson shall complete a ‘Record of Comprehensive Examination' on a form supplied by the Registry. A recommendation for the award of the degree must be submitted through the Dean and the Doctoral Progress Review Committee to the Academic Senate and the President.  
               
        10.6 At the first examination for the Doctoral degree program, a student may: (i) pass unconditionally, (ii) pass, subject to corrections to the dissertation, or (iii) be re-examined. At the conclusion of re-examination for the final examination, a student shall be either pass or fail.  
               
        10.7 All members of the Program Committee should be in attendance during the final examination.  
           
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    11   MASTER'S THESIS/RESEARCH STUDY/PROJECT/INTERNSHIP EXAMINATION  
               
        11.1 The research examination committee for a Master's degree program is the student's Program Committee.  
               
        11.2 The Committee Chairperson shall complete a “Record of Thesis/Research Study/Project/Internship Examination”, which can be obtained from the Registry. A recommendation for the award of the degree must be submitted to the Academic Senate, which makes the recommendation to the President.  
               
        11.3 The examination will include an oral defense by the candidate of his/her research topic, and questions to test the candidate's knowledge of related areas. The following procedures must be followed:  
               
          i) An announcement of the research examination must be made not less than seven working days prior to the comprehensive examination  
               
          ii) A copy of the thesis/research study/project report should be given by the candidate to each member of the Program Committee at least seven days prior to the research examination.  
               
        11.4 The forms associated with degree requirements provide for a decision-making procedure whereby the majority of the examining committee members, with the Chairperson concurring, agree on the recommendation.  
               
        11.5 The Committee may record its views on the student's suitability for admission to the Doctoral program.  
               
        11.6 No correction of the title of a thesis/research study/project will be accepted once the report of the comprehensive examination is received at the Registry.  
           
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    12   ASSESSMENT OF DISSERTATIONS  
           
        No grades are given to dissertations submitted in fulfillment of the requirements for the Doctoral degree. The assessment is based on the quality of the dissertation report itself and on the candidate's success in defending it in an oral examination.  
           
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    13   ASSESSMENT OF THESIS/RESEARCH STUDY/PROJECT  
               
        13.1

A thesis, research study or project which is judged to be satisfactory shall be accorded one of the following grades: excellent, very good, good or fair. The grade is recorded on the “Record of Thesis/Research Study/Project Examination” report and entered on the official transcript.

 
               
        13.2

At the first comprehensive examination for the Master's degree program, a student may:

(i) pass unconditionally on thesis/research study/project report,

(ii) pass on coursework only and have the thesis/research study/project report re-examined after further work,

(iii) pass on thesis/research study/project report only and have a re-examination on coursework after a specified period, or

(iv) be re-examined on both coursework and thesis/research study/project after further work.

 
               
        13.3 At the conclusion of a re-examination for the research, the student shall be either pass or fail.  
               
        13.4 To qualify for a grade of excellent or very good, the quality of the thesis/research study/project should be such that it could form at least a part of a scientific paper to be published in an internationally recognized, refereed journal.  
               
        13.5 The following criteria are used as guidelines for the evaluation of thesis/research study/project ( AS87.04.01, AS93.25 )  
               
          Conduct of Research  
            •  creativity, innovation
•  work independence
•  understanding of subject and related matters
•  ability to organize research
 
               
          Results obtained  
            •  publishability
•  academic contribution
•  practical value
•  work quantity
 
               
          Presentation  
            •  writing quality
•  effective use of literature
•  oral presentation
 
 
        13.6   Definition of Thesis/Research Study/Project Grades. When grading, attention should be paid on the following areas with emphasis varying for thesis, research study and project in graduate programs:

        a. question forming and consistent realization
        b. mastering the subject matter
        c. adequacy and relevance of source literature and source critique
        d. application of theoretical and analytical concepts
        e. mastering of research method, material gathering and analysis
        f. significance of solutions to practical problems
        g. innovative thinking
        h. research ethics
        i. use of terminology, language and presentation

A thesis, research study or project which is judged to be satisfactory shall be accorded one of the following grades:

 

Grade

Definition

Excellent

An excellent grade marks an exceptionally skillful and innovative piece of research. The work clearly and explicitly has significance in the respective field on a national and international level. The knowledge of previous research and theoretical discussion is comprehensive, the concepts relevant and derived skillfully from prior discourse in the respective field. Due to scientific or practical merits, the work could be published as such or as an abridged version in a scientific or - in case of a project - practitioner’s journal or a similar reviewed publication in the field.

Very Good

Overall, the work indicates the author’s independent, critical and innovative research method, ability to analyze theoretically substantial bodies of knowledge and problems or the skill to implement solutions to significant practical assignments. The research goals, concepts and terminology and research problems are well-determined and skillfully combined into a theoretical framework. The research methodology is well chosen and argued, and the gathering and analysis of material has been done with insight.

Good

The work demonstrates, while not on a high level, the author’s ability to accurately conduct research or – in case of a project - prepare solutions to practical problems. The topic and approach chosen may be conventional. The methodical choices have been accounted for, if only narrowly. Theories and research results related to the research subject have been discussed, but on the whole the approach may be mechanical, merely listing the relevant research bases. The language range used may be limited.

Fair

The research work is acceptable but there are shortcomings on several aspects. Research goal and the terminology used may be unclear. The scientific or practical background may be either too narrow or badly delimited. Analysis of the material may be incomplete and the presentation of the results not fully convincing.


(From P&P AA-3-1-1: Policies on Grading approved by the Academic Senate on 02 February 2010 (URL: http://www.ait.ac.th/administration/policies-and-procedures/AA/aa-3-1-1.pdf)

 
           
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    14   DISTRIBUTION OF DISSERTATIONS, THESES, RESEARCH STUDIES AND PROJECTS  
               
        14.1 A minimum of six copies of a thesis or research study/project, and seven copies of a dissertation should be produced. Softcopies in CDs may also be required.  
               
        14.2 The distribution of copies of dissertations/theses/research studies/projects is as follows:  
               
          •  original unbound copy  
            - AIT Library (Archives)  
               
          •  hard bound copies  
            - Student author
- Faculty Advisor
-  AIT Library (2 copies)
- Thai National Documentation Center
 
               
          •  optional copies  
            - Program Committee members
- Scholarship donor (if applicable)
- Royal Library (if applicable).
 
               
        14.3 Students should be responsible for the production of research copies.  
           
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