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Whatever the department regulations, all research paper proposals need to contain a few key points about what you intend to do. If you can already answer the main questions you pose, then they are probably the wrong ones. Your research paper proposal should outline your topic, its importance, and your approach to studying it.In clear, concise language, your proposal should explain: The proposal should briefly state your topic, its importance to your field, and the way you intend to analyze it. What you need not do is answer the hard questions you pose. It should pose one or two major questions, but it does not need to answer them. One way to explain your topic’s importance is to describe current debates surrounding it and how leading scholars treat it.
Once you have identified an important question and stated it clearly, you need to say how you will examine it. You may wish to illustrate your approach with a little preliminary analysis, probably only a paragraph or two.
In the social sciences, you should also mention what data you will use.
Now that you know what makes a good research paper topic, you also know the main points to include in a proposal.
It should briefly explain why it is interesting and how you are going to manage it.
This is a perfect time to think about the research paper as a whole and how you will approach it.
Your revised proposal should reflect your reappraisal, putting you in a much stronger position to launch your research.Are there major disputes among theorists or practitioners? If your topic is not particularly prominent, then you should say why it deserves more attention. In some fields, such as medical ethics, environmental regulation, or educational policy, you should also underscore the topic’s practical significance.Does it affect many people or perhaps affect a few with great intensity? You need to show that the investigation is a manageable task and is likely to yield answers.Then return to discuss it before moving on to more focused research.The draft proposal and its revisions will point you in the right direction.It’s essential to know these administrative details, and you should find them out now.But they are separate from the intellectual issues we cover here.Getting your professor or instructor to approve your research paper proposal is often seen as just a bureaucratic hurdle, yet another dull requirement among so many you have to meet in college. A good proposal would be worth doing even if it were not required, because it will start your research on the right path.That’s also why it is valuable to revise your proposal, to make sure it lays out the research questions intelligently and explains how you intend to study them.That is why revisions are standard operating procedures for much larger papers such as dissertation proposals.They can aid your research paper for exactly the same reasons.