Please check carefully with each department to find out whether a specific template is provided or required.
In general, however, the following elements are crucial in a good research proposal: This can change, but make sure to include important ‘key words’ that will relate your proposal to relevant potential supervisors, funding schemes and so on.
Potential supervisors, admissions tutors and/or funders use research proposals to assess the quality and originality of your ideas, your skills in critical thinking and the feasibility of the research project.
Please bear in mind that Ph D programmes in the UK are designed to be completed in three years (full time) or six years (part time).
Make sure that your title goes beyond simply describing the subject matter – it should give an indication of your approach or key questions.
In this section you should provide a short overview of your research and where it fits within the existing academic discourses, debates or literature.Be sure to include specific techniques, not just your general approach.This should include: kinds of resources consulted; methods for collecting and analyzing data; specific techniques (ie statistical analysis; semi-structured interviewing; participant observation); and (brief) rationale for adopting these methods.This section should discuss the texts which you believe are most important to the project, demonstrate your understanding of the research issues, and identify existing gaps (both theoretical and practical) that the research is intended to address.This section is intended to ‘sign-post’ and contextualize your research questions, not to provide a detailed analysis of existing debates.Remember that this is not simply a bibliography listing ‘everything written on the subject’.Rather, it should show critical reflection in the selection of appropriate texts. The key purpose of research proposal is convincing other people that you have a decent research project, as well as that you have enough competence and detailed work-plan to accomplish it.Ideally, a research proposal should include all the essential components involved in the research process and comprise sufficient and reliable information for the future readers to be able to evaluate the study proposed.You should also use this section to make links between your research and the existing strengths of the department to which you are applying.Visit appropriate websites to find out about existing research taking place in the department and how your project can complement this.