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Master’s Dissertation

The Research Proposal

An introduction to writing the


research proposal

Dr Tony Bennett
Structure of the
Proposal

• Title page
• Background/Introduction
• Literature
• Research question and objectives
• Research method
• Timescale
• Resources
• Access to the study population
• References
Structure of the
Proposal
• Title page • A working title, and
• Background ideally should reflect
• Literature the content of the
• Research question and document
objectives
• Research method
• Timescale
• The title may change
• Resources
• Access to the study
population
• References
Structure of the
Proposal

• This section
Title page
• Background
describes the problem
• Literature
or situation you want

to investigate, and
Research question and
objectives why – prove -
• Research method understand
• Timescale
• Resources
• Access to the study
population
• References
Structure of the
Proposal
• Title page • Discuss the area of
• Background management theory
• Literature that provides the
• Research question and context for your
objectives study.
• Research method
• Who are the leading
• Timescale
authors, experts,
• Resources
leaders in their field
• Access to the study
population
• References
Structure of the
Proposal
• Title page • Explain exactly what it
• Background is that you want to
• Literature find out, and why:
• Research question and • Add to theory,
objectives
• Research method
• Add to practice,
• Timescale • Change practice,
• Resources • Change theory,
• Access to the study • Build knowledge,
population
• References
• Develop people.......
Structure of the
Proposal
• Title page • Positivistic?
• Background • Quantitative
• Literature
• Phenomenological?
• Research question and
objectives • Qualitative
• Research method • Research bias?
• Timescale • Ethics?
• Resources
• How are you going to
• Access to the study
population get your data for
• References analysis (sampling)
Structure of the
Proposal
• Title page • Write about how long the
• Background study will take to:
• Literature • Set objectives,
• Research question and • Plan the project,
objectives • Carry out the research,
• Research method • Collect, analyse and
• Timescale evaluate data,
• Resources • Discuss your findings and
• Access to the study write up, check,
population • Complete and give in
• References
Structure of the
Proposal
• Title page • What resources do
• Background you need to plan,
• Literature carry out data
• Research question and collection, analyse
objectives your data, write it up,
• Research method and finish the
• Timescale Dissertation – people,
• Resources time, IT/computing,
• Access to the study questionnaire
population
preparation,
• References
envelopes, stamps....
Structure of the
Proposal
• Title page • How will you collect
• Background your data, from whom,
• Literature and what methods will
• Research question and you use to make sure
objectives that your data can be
• Research method analysed and reported
• Timescale in a sound way?
• Resources
• Access to the study
population
• References
Structure of the
Proposal
• Title page • You should indicate
• Background the general subject
• Literature area of management
• Research question and with at least 10
objectives references, plus 2 or 3
• Research method research methods
• Timescale references.
• Resources
• Always use the
• Access to the study
population
Harvard system of
• References
referencing
Structure of the
Proposal
• Title page • Front cover page,
• Background/Introduction • This can be your
• Literature contents page at the
• Research question and beginning of the
objectives
assignment,
• Research method
• Timescale
• 4,000 words long,
• Resources • Diagrams,
• Access to the study • References,
population
• Pass mark 40%
• References
Where do I begin?
Find a management subject that needs exploring in areas of:
• People, leadership, human resource management, teams, management
of people,
• Change management, marketing, packaging, service,
• Business strategy, vision, mission, aims, objectives, business planning,
• Risk, project management and planning, costs, productivity,
• Competitive forces, innovation, technology,
• Customer service, consumerism, public accountability, governance,
• Taxation, finance, investment planning, corporate accountability,
corporate communications,
• Sustainability, environment, ethics and ethical issues, manufacturing
And then?
Write the Background or Introduction to your research topic on one
side of A4 paper.

What is the research issue?

Why is it an issue?

Why is it an issue now?

What could your research throw light on or find out?

Who are the leading theorists in your subject area?


And what then?
Go over what you have written with your supervisor.

Discuss the research problem or issue.

Think about your research approach or method for data collection.

Meet your supervisor and talk it through.

You do the work, NOT your supervisor.

CHOOSE A SUBJECT THAT YOU WILL ENJOY


AND GET SOMETHING OUT OF