Writing a thesis proposal demands an intricate understanding of what the thesis proposal should intend to achieve. Some of the things the thesis proposal should achieve include:
a) Demonstrating the need to conduct research on a topic. Thesis proposal is the tool used to identify research gaps and the consequent need for a research study.
b) Explaining the originality of the new knowledge to be acquired. Thesis proposal plays an important role in expounding on how the intended research will result into new knowledge within the field of study.
c) It is equally used to demonstrate how the research topic is in tandem with the researcher’s interests as well as capabilities.
d) It plays an important role in illustrating the feasibility of the research topic. The thesis proposal is essential in showing how the intended research is feasible in terms of data, available funding, relevant staff, and equipment.
A good thesis proposal has to fulfill some requirements. Some of such requirements include:
a) It has to clearly indicate the need to conduct the research. It must be convincing enough, with the purpose of the research being well stipulated. This is the most key element in the approval of the research project.
b) It has to clearly stipulate the intended objectives. The thesis proposal has to define the objectives to guide the research process. The objectives should be realistic in their scope and measurability.
c) There has to be a well-coordinated stream of activities. The thesis proposal must provide for a schedule of activities that the research project will be conducted through. A time-frame for the research project must be provided.
d) There must be an elaborate budget. The thesis proposal should provide for a budget for all activities in the research process. The proposed budget must be in line with the narrative in the thesis proposal.
Although the structure of the thesis proposal may vary from institution to institution, the structure of a contemporary thesis proposal could be as indicated below.
a) Title: The title should give an idea of what you intend to investigate.
b) Abstract: This could be optional in some cases. It should be brief and intend to summarize the introduction.
c) Introduction: It should cover an overview of the intended research project in a brief and succinct manner.
d) Background: This should focus on the reasons why the intended research is important.
e) Problem Statement: This should clearly stipulate the gap that requires addressing.
f) Purpose: This section should focus on the intended objectives.
g) Literature Review: This entails an evaluation of past studies that are related to the intended research in order to establish the available information and data.
h) Methodology: This looks at the methods, procedures, materials, and tasks entailed in studying the research problem.
i) Significance: This section evaluates the expected contributions of the research study.