Be sure to reference texts and resources that you think will play a large role in your analysis.
Remember that this is not simply a bibliography listing ‘everything written on the subject’.
This section is intended to ‘sign-post’ and contextualize your research questions, not to provide a detailed analysis of existing debates.
This section should lay out, in clear terms, the way in which you will structure your research and the specific methods you will use.
This should include: kinds of resources consulted; methods for collecting and analyzing data; specific techniques (ie statistical analysis; semi-structured interviewing; participant observation); and (brief) rationale for adopting these methods.
Your references should provide the reader with a good sense of your grasp on the literature and how you can contribute to it.To avoid this, keep the following advice in mind: Bell, J. (2001): How to Research, (Open University Press, Milton Keynes). (2000): The Research Student's Guide to Success, (Open University, Milton Keynes). (1999): Doing Your Research Project: A Guide for First-time Researchers in Education & Social Science, (Oxford University Press, Oxford). If you are interested in the work of a particular potential supervisor – and especially if you have discussed your work with this person – be sure to mention this in your proposal.We encourage you strongly to identify a prospective supervisor and get in touch with them to discuss your proposal informally BEFORE making a formal application, to ensure it is of mutual interest and to gain input on the design, scope and feasibility of your project.Research proposals are also used to assess your expertise in the area in which you want to conduct research, you knowledge of the existing literature (and how your project will enhance it).Moreover, they are used to assess and assign appropriate supervision teams.Remember, however, that it may not be possible to guarantee that you are supervised by a specific academic.Crucially, it is also an opportunity for you to communicate your passion in the subject area and to make a persuasive argument about what your project can accomplish. It is normal for students to refine their original proposal in light of detailed literature reviews, further consideration of research approaches and comments received from the supervisors (and other academic staff).In this section you should provide a short overview of your research and where it fits within the existing academic discourses, debates or literature.Be as specific as possible in identifying influences or debates you wish to engage with, but try not to get lead astray into a long exegesis of specific sources.