Please note that the nature of a research proposal will vary depending on your specific audience. If, for example, you are addressing only academics in your precise field, you can be quite specific about your area of study and assume a high degree of existing knowledge. But if you are addressing a wider audience, you need to assume that they have less existing knowledge. In any case, it is important to keep your tone formal and academic, while still being as clear and simple you can in your language. Many people writing research proposals make the mistake of trying to over-complicate their language with the idea that it will make them sound academic / impressive. What is most impressive is having an idea that is worthy of academic research whilst remaining comprehensible.
While this document has the form of a sample, the main body of an academic proposal needs to be based on your research idea: all the rest of the content needs to flow from that if it is to be academically credible. The notes and guide that form most of the words in this template are more important than the sentences to fill in. Often, the less ‘filler’ in an academic proposal, the better, as this means it is clear to your readers that your work is content-oriented. Often, the title of a subsection will be enough to introduce it. But it is important to get the title right.
The Sections of This Template
From here onwards, this sample is split into 13 sections according to the sections that should be included in an academic research proposal. Each section includes example notes and guidance on the suggested length and content. Some sections also include suggested content templates to be filled in, but given the nature of a research proposal as academic, this can unfortunately only be limited.
Please also note, the abstract, contents page, introduction and references should always appear on new pages on a printed document. Other sections can continue without page breaks