Research proposal writing is an important component of research in higher institutions because how this is written determines the quality of the research. However, many students in tertiary institutions do not know how to go about writing proposals.
A research proposal is a concise and coherent summary of your proposed research. It sets out the central issues or questions that you intend to address.
In this article, I will show you important things to consider when writing a proposal so that you can carry out a good research that will make meaning. Take note of the following when writing your proposal.
1. Have a clear topic: Research is much easier if you have a clear-cut research topic. If your topic is not very good, it may affect how you write your proposal, so try to get a clear topic. An example of a good topic would be “Prevalence of Malaria in” … instead of “Malaria in”….!
2. Have a good introduction: The introduction of any write up is what determines the rest of the body. A good introduction would start with a bigger scope and get narrowed down to the subject in focus.
For instance, if you are talking about malaria prevalence in Lagos, you need to talk about studies on malaria prevalence in Africa and Nigeria before coming to put Lagos into the picture. Try to make it interesting as well by using tenses correctly and giving your proposal a good structure.
3. Have a good aim and objectives: A good aim will give your research good direction. This is directly dependent on your topic that is why it is important for you to have it straight from there.
In addition, bring out good objectives with the aim to get a clearer direction. The objectives state how you want to achieve your aim – they are more like steps towards achieving your aim so make sure your steps are right.
4. Have good hypotheses: Your hypotheses are the tools you will use to bring results out of your research when you test them by analyzing your data. Your hypotheses are based on your objectives that is why it is important to have clear objectives. Clear objectives equal clear hypotheses which equal easy data analysis.
There are two types of hypotheses namely; Null Hypotheses and Alternative Hypotheses which I like to call predictions. Null hypotheses are widely accepted in Nigeria but I prefer predictions because they prove you know what you are doing.
5. Make your data analysis clear: There is no research without data analysis so make sure you have a good data analysis figured out for your research based on your objectives and not just good data analysis but the right one.
This is one aspect that usually exposes students to attacks from lecturers and other people trying to make them look stupid because you have to defend your proposal publicly. You should also decide which analysis software to use, etc.
Writing your proposal is very important so take note of the steps in this article and you will be fine. It is important that you read widely about your research before you start writing so that there will be no cracks in your write up that anyone can spot. This will make your research powerful and most times useful to society. Good luck!
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