Writing a dissertation proposal can be overwhelming, especially when you don’t know how to go about it. Many questions run through your mind seeking answers.
You wonder, what is a proposal? What should you include or leave out? What does your supervisor want to see? Etc. This guide walks you through the process and ensures you hit the target with your proposal.

What is a Dissertation Proposal?

A proposal itself is a long piece of academic writing usually responsible for presenting the topic of the research focus. Therefore, the first step to writing a proposal is to choose a topic.
The next step is to formulate your research questions and cover in detail how you will tackle them. It also should include the limitations in your research, reasons for your choice of data, and the ethical considerations.
Note that as you research, your proposal can get a new look, and your research questions will experience changes. It is allowed.

Why is a Proposal so Important?

A proposal is an integral part of dissertation writing because it provides you with the guidance you need when writing the main research body. A proper proposal will take away the fear that comes at the beginning of your dissertation writing.
To have a proper proposal, you have to obey the following;

  • A regular and continual meeting with your supervisor
  • Following the guidelines for your university carefully
  • Make a list of the sources you encounter as you do your research

Reading and Selecting a Topic

Selecting a topic is the first stage of your proposal. However, choosing a topic will demand that you read widely. Topics are everywhere; they are there in your notes, lecture slides, relevant journals, publications, etc. but they are hidden.
You have to study to find them out. You must take notes of all the sources you read and use in your research. You will include them in your bibliography later.

Narrowing your Focus and Choosing Existing Literature

As you read, the more you tend to refine your research questions. You could discover that the findings in some previous research works are outdated and needs a modern touch. You can also decide to investigate whether the results in past research remain consistent in a more recent study.

Putting Pen on Paper

By now, you would have a clear understanding of the potentials of your research. At this stage, the next step is creating the structure of your dissertation. Here is a guide to writing your essay.
A proper dissertation proposal should comprise the following;

  1. Introduction
  2. Main Body, which includes:
    • Methodology
    • Aims and objectives
    • Literature review
    • Limitations
    • Ethical considerations
    • Timeframe
  3. Mini-conclusion

Dissertation Proposal Ethics

Ethics in the academic world refers to the moral principles found in any research work. You must put ethics into account because, without it. You open your research to severe criticism.
Your research can be seriously undermined if you do not give room for ethical consideration during research phases, planning, and preparation process. You have to put the following into account for a proper ethical perspective in your work,

  • Make it clear why you’re doing the research
  • Keep your participants well-informed
  • Keep it confidential

A proposal is a crucial part of dissertation writing. It determines how acceptable your dissertation will be at the end. You can write an excellent proposal with the guides and points in this article.