To answer numerous inquiries we are going to give a brief instruction how to write a research proposal.
Topic of the Study
Very many academicians at the beginning of their careers ask questions what topic they should take up for the research. They refer with this question to more experienced researchers, looking for a ready recipe where to move and how to work.
In fact there is no clear-cut, one way direction anyone can give you.
Starting a researcher’s career does not differ a lot from other professions and careers. It means that before taking a step into science you have to think about the subject field where you feel a passion and determination to work in and to learn more about it.
The passion about the subject matter is very important because writing a thesis is not a straightforward and linear process with the definite start and observable end. It will require lots of work, patience, attention to the details, abilities to be consistent and systematic.
No-one can promise it is going to be very exciting to spend all the time with the academic books and journals, reading and writing. That is why the passion about the subject and your clear understanding why you want to start this way are as nothing else crucial to begin your academic career.
That is why the first questions you should ask are the questions to yourself “What do I have passion for?” and “Why do I want to start academic career?” Be sure to answer yourself openly and clearly, moreover, you should think if those answers are really good motivation to start beating your road in the academic world. The motivational factors must be strong enough to bring you from the beginning till the end, despite all hardships you will experience on the way.
Don’t be afraid that the subject you feel a passion for is already very well elaborated, researched and examined. There is always a place for developments and enhancements no matter how far we are in the technological and scientific progress.
The next step to take when thinking about your future study is analysing the subject field, you choose, the problems which exist in the reality either in the world or in your community. Does everything go smoothly in the field? What are the lacks, gaps and yet unsolved problems your community (social group, country, region, industry, etc) continue to experience? What can be done to cover the gap? How to bring a desired solution to solve the problem?
To answer these questions you can have your own experience in the field, you can talk with the experts who have already worked in the area for years, or you can turn to the literature, analysing resources and highlighting the problems which are mentioned by other academicians.
Compare and analyse different points of view, different perspectives at the subject – in this way your comprehension of the missing parts and the places for enhancements will become much more distinct as well as the understanding where you can move to continue the research and to find the solution to the problem highlighted.
Remember, that it is just a beginning of the way, and your success will depend a lot upon your passion and determination to start and to proceed till the end.
When preparing a proposal of your study, be sure to lay it out in the following logic.
In this part you have to highlight the topicality of the research, the motivation to the study, which is caused by the current problems in the community (society). The significance of the problems, you are going to deal with in your study, should be proved with the references to the literature sources, official papers, documents, etc. At this stage you will have to highlight the strategies and approaches you are going to apply when dealing with the problem, the subject of your research.
Statement of the problem should be clear and precise with the reference to the reliable resources about the necessity to solve it. The urge to deal with the problem outlined, and a necessity to find optimal solutions can be the answer to the question “Why does this research need to be done?”
Purpose of the study as driven by the problem outlined, should be literally stated as “The purpose of this research is …..”. In its formulation the researcher has to make a reference to the problem under the discussion, and to direct the readers to its solution, how it is perceived by the researcher. In the connection with the purpose of the study the author formulates a hypothesis, the initial statement which is going to be proved or objected in the cause of the research. The hypothesis can be accompanied with the research questions, which, when answered, will help to prove or reject the hypothesis as the initial statement.
Methodology in the Research Proposal
In the table below we present you with the outline to follow for organising your research plan. Answering the questions in the rubrics will help you provide a comprehensive proposal to submit, either it is an academic paper or a doctoral thesis.
This is just a tiny piece of advice and guidance in conducting research. We hope it was helpful to consider your further academic decisions and steps in your research and academic career.
From all our IATELS team we wish you success in your academic endeavours!