A master’s thesis is a high stakes genre at the summit of a student’s academic accomplishment, and writing a thesis in english is reported to pose difficulties for non-native english speaking students. Given the difficulty of writing master’s theses and their importance in students’ academic achievement, scarce or even non-existent research has been conducted on this specific genre written by vietnamese students. This paper, therefore, presents the study on the rhetorical structure of 24 master’s theses in tesol produced at three universities in vietnam. Employing chen and kuo’s (2012) framework, the results revealed the similarities and differences in the moves and steps of each chapter in the theses written by vietnamese and those by international writers from proquest dissertations and theses database (proquest). Moreover, these findings indicated both these vietnamese writers’ conformity to the rhetorical norms and their adaptation to suit their discourse community’s expectations.