How to Plan your Dissertation Proposal Effortlessly
Oct 22, 2019

A dissertation proposal clearly defines the framework of your research answering the following questions:

  • What is the core theme of your study?
  • What is your study aiming at?
  • Why do you want to shed light on a particular area?
  • How will you conduct your study?
  • What tools will you implement to collect the data?

These are just some fundamental elements that are needed to be sorted out in the dissertation proposal. Nevertheless, every university has its own set of rules and regulations for formulating a dissertation proposal. Whereas, the function of this respective piece of writing is the same as of a detailed research outline which guides you in planning the things for your dissertation. Not only it gives you a vivid idea of mapping the things out for the study but it also sustains the entire quality of your work. Therefore, it is an effective means of writing your final dissertation.

In addition, the structure of the dissertation proposal remains the constant generally, comprising of the following sections:

  • Introduction
  • Literature review
  • Research design
  • Reference list and bibliography

The Purpose of Dissertation Proposal

Being a student, it becomes quite challenging to directly write the dissertation without having any outline or points in mind. To ease this problem, a dissertation proposal operates as an initial draft to the final dissertation. While crafting a dissertation, students first have to select a wise subject area and a good dissertation topic and then assemble pertinent data by making use of authentic resources. The tasks do not end here. There is so much to be carried out in the tiresome journey of the dissertation from digging up factual data to determining the research methods and demonstrating the findings justly. Consequently, to stop chaos and trouble among students, preparing an outline of the dissertation beforehand, really helps. Moreover, along with a good supervisor, this journey becomes simplified and easy-going since the supervisor guides you throughout the phase and keeps a rigorous check on the working process thus if there is anything that needs to be amended, he would aid you in fixing it precisely. On the other hand, if you think your supervisor does not meet your expectations and creates hindrances for you to complete your work on time, then the best way to deal with this snag is to ask help from professionals of online dissertation writing service.

The Tone of Dissertation Proposal

The overall tone of your dissertation proposal should be formal and scholarly. Your words should mirror the fact that your study does not put a full stop from further exploration and you are adaptable in modifying your research designs and methods where it becomes necessary. Yet, you must sound proficient in your chosen subject area so that the readers could instantly get acquainted that you hold a firm grasp on the topic. Moreover, you should act open-minded and flexible enough to accept changes in your study. Stay vibrant and competent throughout the text but avoid being arrogant. Apart from this, your text should innate the quality of convincing the readers along with building their interest. Therefore, your choice of words should interpret that you have cautiously opted for the best and appropriate data, design, and tools of carrying out your study.

The Length of Dissertation Proposal

This element solely depends on the nature of your program and the guidelines listed by the particular university. If you are conducting a master`s or bachelor`s program, then the word limit of the dissertation proposal would be concise and relevant. Whereas, a Ph.D. or doctoral program requires in-depth data and thus, the length of the dissertation proposal would be prolonged.

The Process of Choosing the Topic for Dissertation

The topic of the dissertation must be fascinating and appealing to you since it is you who would work upon it meticulously. When you would love your topic then automatically, your data and the rest of the work would be brought about flawlessly by you. Hence, hunt for a decent topic that causes excitement in your mind and body by just hearing the name of it. As a matter of fact, the procedure of conducting a dissertation often baffles majority of the students since they are oblivious of the basics of their topic due to lack of interest. Hence, the right way out is to select the topic which livens your mood and energy. Furthermore, following is the list of certain factors which would turn out to be productive while going for the perfect topic for the dissertation:

  • Explore profoundly the material for your topic from journals, books, case studies, researches, articles, etc.
  • Keep track of all the information you have gathered for your study, as it would be needed in the bibliography section such as title, author, journal name, issue number, volume number, URL, and date of retrieval.
  • Go for that topic which contains a consolidated background and has a broad scope.
  • Take help by using different keywords for honing your topic.
  • Covert the topic into a research question so that it would transparent your concepts.

On the whole, by adhering to the above ways, it would become very feasible for you to choose a good thesis topic.

The Structure of Dissertation Proposal

The essential parts of the dissertation proposal are as follow:


This section incorporates the following elements:

  • The details of presenting the topic.
  • Background and context.
  • Objectives and aims.
  • Research question.
  • Hypothesis and variables.
  • Statement of the problem.
  • Scope and significance.
  • Assumptions and limitations.
  • Definition of keywords.

Therefore, you would highlight the above factors with extensive knowledge. You would also answer the reason for exploring the chosen area and conducting research on it. In addition, your purpose and importance would also be explained in this section.

Literature review

You are going to propose various schools of thoughts here in this part related to your study. This renders you a brilliant chance of connecting your topic with pertinent and credible factual data which you have extracted from different resources. In this manner, you would be able to relate their title, methodologies, research designs, population, sample, and findings with your own dissertation. The literature review helps in:

  • Giving the readers a solid context.
  • Critical analysis of the studies.
  • Comparing other studies with your case.

Furthermore, you should at least cover a maximum number of authentic researches and journals in this section to enhance the professionalism of the entire study. In the nutshell, the literature review would reflect the essence of the study and envelop the most significant studies that had aided you in deciding your designs and tools. Thus, you could take as many studies for your literature review as far as they are totally relevant to your study and augment its value.

Research methodology

This section answers the question that how you are going to supervise this dissertation. Generally, it would entail the following list:

  • Research design and paradigm.
  • Data collection techniques and tools.
  • Population and sample size.

If your study follows a quantitative paradigm then the possible designs would be a survey, questionnaire, observation through checklist, experiments, etc. and if you wish to employ qualitative paradigm then you may choose interview, observation, case study, ethnography, experiments for your designs. Moreover, together with providing all these details you would be required to explain the causes as well of selecting the particular methodology.

Potential outcomes

Here you would be assuming the possible outcomes that your study would generate. This section is not so compulsory yet it just covers your thoughts and ideas that what could be the result of your dissertation and what type of suggestions you could the out from the study.

Research work plan

If you are asked to mention a research work plan then you can create a schedule in which you have to organise the chapters distributing them in a particular interval of time. For instance, you could allocate one month for finalising your literature review. Moreover, it should sound realistic and you should try to stick to it. Thus, the work plan would give a rough idea to the supervisor and to you as well that your dissertation would be completed around the stated time period.

Reference list and bibliography

This section would include an accurate list of the in-text citations, references, and quotes you have used during the study to refine the worth of it. Therefore, the list would be an alphabetical order with proper format and style as recommended by your university. For further guidance and support, take help from ‘Basic APA Referencing in Dissertation.’

Bibliography refers to the section where you have to scribble the references of every source of information you have unearthed for your study whether you have used that source in your dissertation or not. In addition, this list would also follow the same pattern as the reference list does. Consequently, make sure to include all the references so that it could support the all-inclusive dissertation proposal.

Break a leg for your dissertation proposal!