A Review On "Research Proposal: Academic Writing Guide for Graduate Students"

Research Proposal: Academic Writing Guide for Graduate Students (Essay and Thesis Writing) is a short guide to developing your research proposal. Dr Grant Andrews, an academic writing teacher, wrote the handbook to simplify research proposal writing. If you’re working on a Master’s or a doctorate thesis, you’ll need to submit a thorough research proposal before your research may be authorised. In this quick guide, you’ll learn the fundamental components of a research proposal.

Research proposal writing might be perplexing, and it isn’t easy to obtain plain, straightforward directions on what to incorporate in your proposal. There are many dissertation proposal writing services available that can help you write research proposals. However, this book will help you start your academic writing journey on the proper foot, whether you’re writing an essay, a Master’s thesis, or a PhD thesis. The purpose of this article is to critically review the fundamental components of the book Research Proposal: Academic Writing Guide for Graduate Students.

Contents of the Book

The book consists of the following components:

  • Introduction
  • The Purpose of a Proposal
  • Motivation for Your Research
  • Methodology
  • Literature Review
  • Research Plan and Bibliography
  • Things to Remember

How to Write the Purpose of Your Study in a Research Proposal?

In the Academic Writing Guide, Dr Andrews emphasises that a thesis must present a novel idea or contribute to a better understanding of current research in some way. A Master’s thesis typically requires you to demonstrate that you are knowledgeable about the topic and can explain complex concepts. For a doctorate, you must provide a novel idea that advances research somehow. At the initial stages, your proposal should depict the following three aspects:

  • The Importance of Your Research
  • Demonstration of advanced knowledge in your field of study
  • Outline of Your Research

How to outline the importance of your research?

You can accomplish this task by pointing out research gaps or areas that require further exploration. Then you must demonstrate how your research can help close those gaps or increase understanding somehow.

How to demonstrate advanced knowledge in your field of study?

You can achieve this task by demonstrating that you have done extensive research on the topic. You can present a quick literature review for a Master’s thesis (two pages). According to the author of the Academic Writing Guide, a literature review for a PhD thesis should be between three to five pages. The literature review should encompass all of the essential ideas and references to the most renowned experts in your field. It should not be lengthy, but you should demonstrate that you have read at least all major scholarly works.

How to make an outline of your research?

According to the author of the Academic Writing Guide, your proposal should provide an outline of your research. You can complete this task by informing the readers about all of the stages of your research methodology. You should include all of the steps you’ll take, how long they’ll take, how you’ll collect data, and any other features your study will entail. It is pertinent to delineate the ethical considerations as well. In the methodology part, write about your research timeline and the list of chapters.

Format of a Research Proposal

According to the Academic Writing Guide, a standard research proposal has the following structure:

Cover Page

The first thing to incorporate in a research proposal is information about the researcher. It must consist of the following:

  • Full Name
  • Student ID
  • Degree Type
  • Full Title of Your Study
  • Name of the University
  • Name of the Department
  • Supervisor’s Name/Title
  • University’s logo
  • A list of 5-10 keywords

Abstract/Executive Summary

The next thing to include in your research proposal as per the guidelines of the Academic Writing Guide is to write an abstract or summary. An abstract is a concise summary of your entire research. Your abstract might be anything from 150 to 400 words long, depending on the scope of your research topic. Try to be as succinct as possible. Mention all of the major themes you’ll be discussing, as well as your key thesis statement. Here you should also include the main findings or your hypotheses/expectations.


The introduction section is important in the research proposal since it is the first impression that establishes the context of your research. Academic Writing Guide provides the following recommendations for writing the Introduction section:

  • Background knowledge of the topic
  • Thesis Statement
  • The length should be between half to full page
  • Overview of your research

Background of the Study

The background of the study in a research proposal is a justification for conducting the research. According to the Academic Writing Guide background of the study should talk about the following things:

  • Demonstrate a good grasp of the chosen subject and topic
  • Inform the readers about the existing body of knowledge
  • Identify the gaps in knowledge
  • Research background is not a literature review

Research Questions

Research questions are an integral component of a research proposal. In this section, you must include the following details:

  • Main Research question
  • Sub-questions
  • Devise solution-based questions
  • Develop practical and straightforward questions


Research methodology is a larger section of your research proposal. The methodology section consists of the following components:

Theoretical Framework

This section informs your readers about the theories that will guide your research. It establishes the context of your research and provides you with the perspective. Choose a theory that appears to be a good match for your study design.

Research Methods/Data collection

This section of your research proposal informs the readers about your research methodology to conduct your research. This part discusses how you’ll conduct your research and gather the data. You must provide as much details as feasible regarding the measures you will take to complete your research. The rest of the research proposal must have the following components:

  • Ethical Considerations
  • Sample Collection/Participant Gathering
  • Literature Review
  • Research Plan and Bibliography


Academic Writing Guide is a comprehensive guidebook for writing a research proposal. Dr Andrews has skilfully covered every aspect of a research proposal. Students who have to write a research proposal for their Master’s or PhD dissertation can overview this book. It will help formulate a research proposal that will be good enough for academic purposes.

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