Elements of a Research Proposal Structure

Having the right components in your research proposal is the key to success. You may have written an error-free and informative project. But if the text is not organized, then your proposal is likely to be rejected. This results in not only time wastage but also energy. Failure can also increase the odds of not graduating on time or worse, affect your credibility as a scholar. To help out, here is an effective structure to emulate when you want to write a research proposal.


This section should contain the name of the project, the researchers’ name, date submitted, and the institution’s name. The information should be center-aligned and start on a new page. Depending on the course, you may also have to include the name of the supervisor. To ensure you include all the necessary details, look at previous proposal examples, or confirm from your guidelines.

When writing the title, adhere to the following checklist:

  1. Be brief and self-explanatory.
  2. The language should be simple, clear, and unambiguous.
  3. It should reflect the theme of the research that you intend to pursue.

H2: Abstract

This section contains a summary of the content found in the entire proposal. Keep the abstract within one page between 150 and 250 words. Crucial information to include are:

  1. The research question
  2. Research design
  3. Methodology
  4. Theoretical framework.

You can tell you have written a good abstract if the content accurately reflects the components that are in the proposal. Finally, ensure your abstract is concise, coherent, and readable.

Introductory Page

The biggest obstacle that most students encounter when writing the introduction is framing the research problem. If constructed in the wrong way, the proposal might look less appealing. Therefore, to captivate the reader, the problem question must be in the context of the current research area.

The ideal hook to use in the introductory section of a proposal is to have a unique statement of the problem. It should focus on a specific angle and be backed up by evidence that justifies the proposed study.

Literature Review

This section gives background information on the topic by focusing on existing literature. As a result, the writer must sift through numerous research and use only those relevant to the selected issue. While doing in-depth analysis, you are also more likely to find a gap that you can fill with your research.

The number of literature to use depends on the type of proposal. If your proposal aims to convince an organization to fund your research, you need to use a lot more research than a standard academic assignment. When in doubt about how much information to include in your literature review section, double-check the specified instructions.


Give as many details as possible about the procedures you will use to find a solution to the research problem. Some of the research methods include surveys, trend study, case study, and many more.


Follow the specified technicality when creating a bibliography. Include only the sources used in the text and arrange the information in alphabetical order.

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