Writing A Dissertation Proposal: What Is The Proper Format?


Writing a dissertation involves more than researching and organizing. Students need to write a dissertation proposal in order to get the paper approved by the dissertation committee. While most dissertation proposals are written in the same way, you should always be sure that your proposal follows the format that was given to you by your dissertation committee. If you are not given a proposal format, here are the required elements:

Title Page: Your title page needs to be crafted in the formatting style that your instructor assigns. It could be MLA, APA, Chicago Style, or another option. The title page will need your name, the topic of your dissertation, and other elements. It should also say that this is the dissertation proposal instead of the entire project.

Abstract: Most abstracts should only be about 350 words and they should include several elements like the introduction, the problem you will research, some background about the problem, questions you will answer, and the methods you will use.

Introduction: This will be a brief section about the actual study you will conduct. You should include some background information so your committee knows why you chose this subject.

Statement of the Problem: This section shows the limitations of the field you are researching, so you can show why it is important to conduct this research. You will show how your research will advance the field.

Background of the Study: You will show the committee what previous research you have looked at to help you determine the course of your actions. You need to connect your education to the knowledge that already exists in the area you are researching.

Research Questions: Your committee will want to see a logical progression of the questions you want to answer in your dissertation. The questions should connect to the background section of the proposal.

Methods: This section will show the committee what you plan to do to prove your dissertation. You will need to discuss the scientific methods or other controlled techniques you plan to use. You will also need to share the different tools you will use to get the results you are hoping to see.

Limitations: In this section, you will show the weaknesses that could create problems for your dissertation. You can also show what you will do when those problems arise

References: This is the list of resources you plan to use and the list should be formatted in the style that was assigned to your dissertation.

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