Writing The Research Proposal


Writing the Research Proposal
You will be required to write a short proposal for your argumentative research paper.
This proposal will be an expansion of your thesis statement to tell a bit more about your
paper topic and present a few of the sources from which you plan to gather your
researched material. This short proposal must include the following information:
a. Your purpose for writing this paper. What will you examine and why is that
b. Your role as the writer of this paper. What techniques will you use to both inform
your reader and present your argument in a persuasive manner?
c. Your working thesis statement or hypothesis. What do you expect to find in your
Here is an example of a short research proposal:
Some university instructors complain that incoming freshmen are inadequately
prepared for the demands of college-level research tasks. This is probably due to a
failure of communication between high school and college instructors and
administrators. This research project will examine the existing literature concerning
the research habits of high school and college students and will also present original
data collected from the examination of hour first-year college English courses and
four senior-year high school English courses. This research and its conclusions will
seek to adequately prepare their students for the rigors of college courses. By
isolating the skills in which students most need improvement, this project will assist
high-school instructors and administrators to plan and teach more effective English
As you can see, this is a one-paragraph proposal. And yet, it conveys, directly or
indirectly, all of the required information listed above. The purpose is to help those
instructors and administrators to improve their students’ skills in research. The
researcher’s role in the project is both to inform the audience, and to advocate a
particular course of action (by drawing forceful conclusions concerning what methods
seem to work best at the high school level). And the working thesis is contained in
the opening lines: that the inadequate preparation of incoming college freshman is
due to high-school teachers’ poor understanding of college-level work.


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