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The first from our Student Learning, and the second from Massey, outline the basic steps needed for a successful proposal.The third is a longer guide from the University of Sydney with examples of model proposals for both the Sciences and Social Sciences.A research proposal is a succinctly written document outlining the premise of the research to be conducted.
Think about which areas have most interested you in your studies to date, and what you would most like to explore.
Then start to read around those subjects to narrow down the field of interest.
Again, a narrow question that you can research in detail is better than a broad one that you will not be able to cover in full.
Your research question(s) should be ones that have not been fully answered in previous research so that you are adding to the literature.
Learning outcomes include: identifying the characteristics of a strong qualitative research proposal including a look at the three main types.
Plus key considerations in writing and successfully defending your qualitative research proposal.
Once you have a topic, and research question(s), then you can decide on a title, which should broadly cover your research question(s) and summarise what you are going to do.
You can and should use your dissertation supervisor as a sounding board as you develop your thinking, although beware of bombarding them with enthusiastic and/or panicky emails.
Now is a good time to identify a possible supervisor and talk to them about whether they would be prepared to supervise you and help you narrow down your research topic.
As a general principle, it is better to research a narrow topic in more detail than a broad one in very little detail.