How to Write a Research Proposal

How to Write a Research Proposal

Research is creative and systematic work undertaken to increase the stock of knowledge. It involves collecting, organizing, and analyzing information to increase understanding of a topic or issue.

A research project may be an expansion of past work in the field. To test the validity of instruments, procedures, or experiments, research may replicate elements of previous projects or the project. It is a document discussing what you want to research, why you intend and how you plan to perform research. The research supervisor or institution requires a proposal to ensure that the topic is suitable and manageable for you to complete. It also convinces the supervisor that the topic is worth exploring and its importance. If resources are needed while conducting the research, the information is passed through the proposal, and it should be convincing. Once you submit the proposal, a committee reviews the proposal to approve or disapprove it; once approved, you start the research.

 A research proposal is simply a short piece of writing that details precisely what you’ll be covering in a larger research project.

 Writing a research proposal requires effectiveness and good preparation, which is essential to grant a competitive advantage when competitive funding. It also helps researchers plan, project formulation, planning, and monitor the research.

The quality of the research proposal contributes to the evaluation outcome. Developing a research proposal requires a lot of reading, thinking, discussing ideas, and sorting them to create the best idea for the research proposal.

A research proposal also demonstrates that the author can conduct this research and contribute to the current state of their field in a meaningful way. To do this, your research proposal needs to discuss your academic background and credentials and demonstrate that your proposed ideas have academic merit. 

But demonstrating your research’s validity and personality to carry it out isn’t enough to get your research proposal approved. The research proposal also has to cover the following;

  • Introduction,

The structure of the research proposal follows the following steps

  • Introduction title,
  • Introduction,
  • literature review
  • methodology,
  • plan, budget,
  • And further reading.

Research title

The title of the research proposal should be simple, descriptive, catchy, and introduced favorably towards the proposal.


This is the first thing to tell a leader of the topic why it’s enjoyable by outlining a strong opening hook. This is a strong opening sentence that delivers the message to the audience. One will consider a strong fact, statement, question, or brief capturing statement that will get the reader wondering about the topic.

 The introduction generally covers the following elements:

  • The research problem or the purpose of the study.
  •  The study’s objective should be general specific and measurable, and feasible as well. Identify the key independent and dependent variables of the study. State the research hypothesis and be aware of the limitation or boundaries of the study.

The literature review

The literature review aims to provide adequate information on the proposed research, mainly on past incidence on the research topic the current status of the proposed research topic. It should be brief and indicate related research that had or is being conducted there should reference should be included.

A literature review has the following function;

  1. It demonstrates the knowledge of the research problem.
  2. It should illustrate the researcher’s understanding of theoretical and research issues related to the researcher’s question.
  3. It should indicate researchers’ ability to integrate and synthesize the existing literature provide new theoretical insight as a conceptual framework for the research.
  4. It should convince the reader that the proposed study will significantly contribute to the literature.


The methodology is a crucial section that explains how you plan to tackle the research problem. It will provide your work plan and describe the activities necessary to complete the project.

This section contains the following areas:

  • Study design; it tells what kind of design the researcher chooses, either case-control, cross-sectional or descriptive.

 In methodology, ethical consideration is necessary to submit a research proposal to the ethical committee (either your supervisor or manager) depending on what you are working on or any research you are conducting. This is to make sure researchers practice ethical behavior while researching.

Planning is an essential step in research proposal writing, which includes the proposed time frame and activity schedule. The time of research proposal should entail the purchasing and obtaining relevant consumables and facilities needed to conduct the study, analysis of data, and writing project report. Preparing an activity schedule is essential for monitoring the project. It should list the time frame for significant activities and include milestones of these activities Budget entails preparing a rough estimate of what you expect to incur during the research you are planning to conduct. The budget provides a total and yearly breakdown of the funding needed; it gives appropriate cost estimates depending on the different areas such as transport, service, and equipment, among others. It also provides adequate justification for costly items for the research.

Lastly, you conclude your research proposal by siting the main achievement and the research brief’s shortcomings. It would help if you wrote more while concluding it should be brief and direct.