How to Write a Proposal for a Dissertation

As presented below, a dissertation proposal is the most important first step towards writing your final dissertation on a taught or research masters course, or a PhD level course.

Writing a Dissertation Proposal

How to Write a Proposal for a Dissertation

A dissertation proposal is a basic outline of the research you will do. A dissertation proposal should be well-written to persuade your faculty or University to allow you to continue with your research. As a result, you must first write a dissertation paper before beginning your dissertation.

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Furthermore, the length and structure of a dissertation proposal vary depending on your institution of study and the amount of information you must include in your dissertation.

The following elements should be included in a dissertation proposal:

  • A well-structured topic
  • An introduction to your topic and the goals of your research
  • A review of the current level of knowledge in the literature
  • A description of the methodology that will be used.
  • A discussion of your research’s potential consequences
  • A list of citations from reliable sources

A solid dissertation proposal is composed of six essential steps:

  1. Coming up with an idea

To avoid making simple mistakes while writing your proposal and dissertation, you must have a wonderful and strong idea for your dissertation before you begin writing your proposal. As a result, before you start writing your dissertation proposal, choose a topic interesting to you and relevant to your field of study. After that, conduct primary research on the subject to uncover any substantial gaps. Once you’ve come up with a concept, work on narrowing it down to a clear and exact dissertation topic. This issue must be specific and controllable, so narrow your attention to a particular field rather than a large area of interest.

  1. Presenting ideas in the introduction section

A dissertation proposal should have an introductory part. First, you explain your research topic, provide a brief background analysis of your case, and describe your research topic’s aims, objectives, and research questions. This section of your dissertation proposal should be short and sweet. As a result, you must describe the major issue in your research and explain why this topic is intriguing in the form of a hook. Then, include further background information about your issue, its current condition, and how your research will contribute to the field. Finally, your introductory section should state your research questions, objectives, and goals. Make sure your research questions are manageable and avoid having too many.

  1. Literature review

It is critical to investigate previous research works relevant to your study issue when you have created a clear, specific, and crucial research topic with a clear introduction. Exploring related research is essential for identifying research gaps and ensuring that you are not posing a subject that has previously been addressed. You must systematically assess and analyse the most relevant sources in your literature study in this area. This section is challenging for most students and requires much attention and time. However, by looking into different research materials, you should be able to compile a summary of study findings from these sources to identify holes in your research that will help you improve and support it. Furthermore, you must locate facts and theories that will influence your research as you read through these research materials.

  1. Describing your methodology

By outlining the exact tasks, you intend to accomplish in your research, describing your technique aids in the direction of your research. A research methodology can also assist you in deciding on the layout of your dissertation and the data gathering and analysis procedures you’ll utilise. This section demands you to be very detailed in your judgments, as this is what will persuade your supervisor that you’ve carefully considered your approach to the research and that you can carry it out realistically. The methodology entails a broad range of empirical research focusing on data gathering, new information discovery, new conceptual model development, and data analysis methodologies. There are two types of research involved in describing your methodology;

  • Empirical Research: To answer your research topic, empirical research entails gathering and analysing new data. This type of analysis could be qualitative, quantitative, or a combination of the two.
  • Theoretical research: The findings of this research approach are based on current hypotheses. On the other hand, theoretical research does not include collecting original data; rather, it focuses on the theories you intend to utilise throughout your dissertation.
  1. Outlining the potential impacts of your research

A section detailing your research activity’s desired or predicted outcomes is common towards the end of a dissertation proposal. Because you don’t know what your research will achieve in this area, you should create a projected impact and contribution to the understanding of your research activity. Consider the potential implications of your research first when presenting your research’s possible consequences and contributions. Then, discuss the desired outcome and any practical or theoretical implications for your field or industry. Finally, quickly identify and restate the addition to the knowledge you aim to make. Next, determine what precise questions your study will answer and what holes it will cover.

  1. Create a bibliography list or a reference list

A well-referenced dissertation proposal should include a list of all sources used in your research. This section is frequently moved to a new page at the end of your submission. Other referencing styles include Harvard, APA, MLA, and Chicago. These referencing styles might be used depending on your institution. Furthermore, a reference list and a bibliography may differ. A reference list is a list of sources cited in your proposal, but a bibliography is a list of all sources used during your research. Again, referencing styles may differ by institution, so check with your supervisor.