Writing a research proposal is a key endeavor in all graduate studies. When undertaking a research project at the graduate level, a research proposal is a prerequisite, where serves an important role in determining the worthiness of the research project. The research proposal serves the following functions.
a) It is important in convincing the Supervisory Committee that your research project is worth pursuing. Arguably, it is true that a research proposal reflects on how good or bad a research project is likely to be.
b) Itís a tool used to help scholars conduct an in-depth preliminary research. Writing the research proposal is essential in ensuring that scholars carry out adequate research on a topic of interest in an effort to determine how feasible the research is.
c) The research proposal is important in highlighting the fundamental issues entailed in the research project by providing a broad analysis of the research topic as well as the research process.
d) Equally, the research proposal plays an important role in securing the funding necessary in conducting the research. A well written research proposal is the difference between success in securing research funds and failure to.
A good research proposal could be defined by numerous elements. Such elements include:
a) It must answer fundamental questions. A research proposal must answer various questions. These questions include; what you want to do, the time required, and the necessary funding; the intended research impacts; what has been covered in your research area of interest; and evaluation of the results.
b) The research proposal should have the right content. This means that it should be objective, clear, and realistic in its objectives. The objectives should be well stipulated and effectively justified. Equally, you should address the benefits to be realized from the research project.
c) Importantly, when writing the research proposal, the right style should be used. This requires that you use structured text, varying sentence length, draw on short paragraphs, and use diagrams or images where necessary.
The structure of a research proposal could vary based on requirements by different institutions; however, a contemporary research proposal could include some of these sections.
a) Abstract: It should be brief and include the key elements of the research proposal including the research question, hypothesis, methodology, and findings.
b) Introduction: It should provide the research problemís background. The background should stipulate what makes the research important or necessary.
c) Literature Review: The literature review should be expansive enough to ensure that it covers all previous studies on the topic to avoid repetition.
d) Methods: This should explain how the research problem will be answered. It encompasses the research work plan and respective activities.
e) Results: This should highlight the data you intend to collect in the research project.