• March 15th, 2016

Phd proposal

Paper, Order, or Assignment Requirements

Choosing a subject is one thing, but writing a research proposal is another. A good research proposal will generally:
• Focus clearly on some specific question(s) that the research will answer, or on hypotheses to be tested
• Demonstrate some familiarity with key current work in the relevant area by citing recent literature
• Show awareness of descriptive frameworks or theories in the relevant area, and also of research methods that have been used there
• Describe clearly the methodology to be used for your research: eg what data you might gather, from whom, where and how or what linguistic, statistical or computational techniques might be involved
• Where relevant, indicate clearly the possible implications for real-world practical activities (eg for language teaching, business, speech therapy etc)
• Be written using a professional layout and conventions, eg subheadings, references properly made in the text and listed at the end etc
• Be clearly aimed at the interests of some member(s) of staff that we have here.

A good proposal will not:
• Provide an overview of an area (eg English for specific purposes, corpus linguistics, optimality theory or language teaching methods) without showing precisely what your study will be focused on
• Mention only very old sources, and/or propose to research something that was popular 20 years ago, from which researchers have now moved forward
• Propose to research questions that are too broad and un-researchable
• Propose an unimaginative duplication of research already done many times
• Fail to give proper details of the proposed method of answering the research questions (eg exactly how and where the data would be gathered, and why)
• Be too short (less than a page)
• Be too long (e.g. ten pages) – aim for 750 words
• Be incoherent
• Relate to an area in which we have no members of staff working/supervising

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