Creating a Strong Research Paper Proposal: Basic Tips
You should not underestimate the importance of your research paper proposal. If it is poorly written, you may be rejected by the advisory committee to go on with your project. If your proposal is strong, it will convince the committee members that your ideas are worth further investigation, your plan is reasonable, and you are competent enough to do the job.
Your proposal should cover the following questions:
- What do you want to investigate?
- Why do you want to do it?
- How are you going to accomplish the task?
The answers to these questions should be formulated clearly and concisely. Be sure to provide enough information in the following standard sections: introduction, literature review, methods, results, and discussion. Here are some basic tips that will help you organize these sections properly and create a strong and compelling research paper proposal:
- Provide enough context for your research problem in the introduction.
- Base your literature review only on relevant materials.
- Include sufficient information into your methodology section.
- Share your plans on how research results will be gathered and processed.
- Make your discussion section convincing.
- Keep to the guidelines.
Your opening paragraphs to proposal should be interesting and catching. Firstly, look at the issue in a current light. If it is hot, it won’t be difficult to persuade committee that the problem should be explored more deeply. Secondly, look back and explain how the issue was treated historically. Thirdly, refer to the most influential scholars exploring this area.
Rely mostly on the sources of great scientific importance. Don’t pay too much attention to citing secondary unknown references. If you cite someone’s paper, be sure to evaluate it critically. Don’t forget to mention recent discoveries in the field.
Sufficient information will prove that your research plan is sound. Remember to add alternative methods of research. Your methods should be elaborated according to the demands of either qualitative or quantitative analysis.
Of course, you won’t be able to provide any results at the proposal stage. However, it is necessary that you inform what kind of results you are expecting to gather and what statistical methods will be involved to process the results.
Describe what positive impact your paper will have on the current scientific situation in the industry. Be sure to mention possible weak places of your research problem and limitations that can be experienced in the process of work.
Follow your advisor’s instructions when creating your proposal. Stick to the assigned formatting style.
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