PhD Research Proposal

Writing a PhD research Proposal

This article will define what a PhD research proposal is, how to choose a research proposal topic, how to organize your PhD proposal, and how to write a PhD dissertation proposal that will be accepted.

A PhD research proposal serves as a statement of intend for the more detailed PhD dissertation. It provides the reader with a clear understanding about why the research, your research, should take place. At this point, it is important to first distinguish between a thesis, and a dissertation.  A thesis or a dissertation is a discourse a debt or a discussion on a particular topic.  More specifically, a thesis is a body of work that is written to fulfill the requirements of a masters degree whereas a dissertation is written for the doctoral degree.  Both a thesis and a dissertation contain a question that needs to be answered; however, the main difference between the two is that a dissertation should make a significant original contribution to the body of knowledge. In contrast, the masters thesis answers a research problem or question based on previous research or literature.

Choosing a Topic and Supervisor

It is important that you choose a topic you are passionate about.  Research something you find interesting; you will be working on this topic for a significant period of time.  As for the choice of supervisor, select someone for their area of expertize or some one who will be able relate to you.  Although you may not be able to get a perfect match, the closer you get the better off you will be.  Once you have a definite topic in mind, the next step in organizing your research proposal.  The basic section in a research proposal are the following, title of study, introduction, significance of research, the literature review, and methodology, which includes the research design, and data analyses, expected results, ethical statements, time frame or type of plan, and budget, and finally your plan for budgets as well as primary references.

Your title must give the reader a sense of what you are examining in other words it must clearly indicate your topic and capitulate what you are saying however do not make it to general or to long it should be no more then fifteen words it should be catchy, and attention grabbing.  The introduction introduces the reader to the topic in question, and usually begins with a pref historic over view of the topic.  The introduction outlines the topic, and general field of interest. It shows how how your chosen topic fits within it. This section should show why you are interested in the study.  The significance of research discusses your main aim, and the significance of your main study there are two elements you should present at this point.  First is the purpose what is the purpose or over all aim of your research?  Clearly state your purpose.  There are hypothesis that should be clearly stated.  You should indicate what objectives you expect to achieve through your study, and what specific research questions should be addressed.