how to start writing a dissertation proposal
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This concise, hands-on book by author Elizabeth A. Wentz is essential reading for any graduate student entering the dissertation process in the social or behavioral sciences. The book addresses the importance of ethical scientific research, developing your curriculum vitae, effective reading and writing, completing a literature review, conceptualizing your research idea, and translating that idea into a realistic research proposal using research methods.
The author also offers insight into oral presentations of the completed proposal, and the final chapter presents ideas for next steps after the proposal has been presented. Taking the view that we “learn by doing,” the author provides Quick Tasks, Action Items, and To Do List activities throughout the text that, when combined, develop each piece of your research proposal. Designed primarily for quantitative or mixed methods research dissertations, this book is a valuable start-to-finish resource.
Each UNT department has slightly different proposal requirements, so be sure to check with your advisor or the department’s graduate advisor before you start!
The purpose of a proposal is to convince your dissertation or thesis committee that you are ready to start your research project and to create a plan for your dissertation or thesis work. You will submit your proposal to your committee for review and then you will do your proposal defense, during which you present your plan and the committee asks questions about it. The committee wants to know if your research questions have academic merit and whether you have chosen the right methods to answer the questions.