Here a more challenging version

The following example illustrates a more differentiated standard for doing a research proposal directed to our Ph.D.-Students, which contains more scientific terms, and also an assessment-guide for this level of study.

  1. Title: The title shall convey the focus point of the hypotheses clearly and concisely.

  2. Abstract (ca. 15 lines): What is the intention and the purpose of the thesis? Hence, what can be expected?

  3. Problem and research question (1-2 pages): Clear formulation of what is going to be explored. Why is the hypothesis justified? Why is there a need to raise it? What problems are related to it and are discussed in the field of research? The illustration of the problem should be focused very precisely; however, not on a marginal level.

  4. State of field (in a broader context, 5-8 pages): Primary literature related to the major issue as well as clear content of sub-questions. Selected references (6-10 articles) shall provide a solid theoretical and empirical basis. While assessing the research proposal it is essential that cited literature has been reflected correctly, besides being quality sources, and that no relevant literature is missing.

  5. Theoretical and conceptual approach (2-4 pages): The theoretical core concept of work, derived hypotheses, propositions, prepositions to be established. When assessing the research proposal, it is essential to understand its whole reach and scope regarding its central areas and whether they are rather descriptive, explicative, technical, evaluative or prognostic. Also, it essential to compile the core value of the thesis to an extent that the research proposal has a well developed frame, which suits the need of the former. The latter needs to be based on logical and justified ideas, besides being convincing in its nature in terms of its consequences and practical implementations.

  6. Methods (2-3 pages). Epistemological basic information, data requirements, data compiling, analytical techniques (e.g. explorative or confirmatory analysis, etc.), avoidance of bias, securing external and internal validity, unambiguousness, securing plausibility. Methods of data analysis should be presented reasonable and justified, especially in terms of the procedure of testing the nature of the hypothesis using chosen quality data. Crucial when assessing research proposals is whether the proposed study and its implied variables are appropriate to the hypotheses, and whether the data compiling method is appropriate to the used analytical techniques. Other variables have to be taken into consideration as well like whether the applied research has internal and external validity and analytical techniques appropriate to the established theory and research questions.

  7. Relevance of thesis (1-2 pages): What is the intention behind the hypotheses? What will be the gain within the field of expertise? How can the scientific debate be stimulated? When assessing the research proposal it is crucial whether the thesis promises to be contributed by valued, already existing research, and whether the contribution to science is of quality, authentic, well-researched and documented besides being inspiring to the international science community.

  8. Bibliography: The fulfilment of the usual standards of citing (APA style) is taken for granted.

Last modified: Thursday, 27 August 2020, 6:20 PM