Disseration Proposal

A dissertation proposal is a long written plan that is done as a preparation for the thesis. Some of the people involved in drafting the dissertation proposal include people studying medicine, philosophy, and PhD. Although the dissertation proposal does not directly provide answers, it gives the steps or procedures followed in getting to the desired results for the research carried out. The other benefit of writing the proposal is to provide an understanding of the conclusions arrived at when the author attains the goal of the study.

Being one of the last yet essential pieces of document you need to write before you conclude with your thesis, it is crucial that you have ample preparation by mastering how to write the proposal and the right format to follow when writing too.

Why is the dissertation proposal written before thesis?

  • It describes the plot of the argument.
  • The proposal outlines the issue to be studied.
  • It provides the methodologies and techniques that the scientist intends to apply when carrying out the study.
  • It includes all the references and theories involved in the research.
  • It also indicates the potential results that may be arrived at the end of the study.

If you have no idea of how to write a well-presented dissertation proposal, below are some tips to guide you on how to write a dissertation proposal.

  1. Understand the purpose of the proposal.

The good thing about writing the dissertation proposal is that you get to choose the topic you want to write about. This means that you will be writing about something you have passion about and are interested in. But still, for you to have an easy time researching for the proposal and even write a project that makes sense, you ought to take your time and fully understand the purpose of the plan.

How to prepare for the proposal topic( purpose).

Read from various sources about the topic to get an in-depth understanding and ideas of what to write about. You don’t want to get stuck in the middle of your proposal due to lack of purposes or objectives to write about. Thus, read related topics and information from both primary and secondary sources.

  1. Write a draft.

Before you arrive at the final paper of your proposal, it is advisable that you first write a draft. But note that the draft should contain the same info that will be included in the final dissertation. Those who have written a proposal before can agree with me that before you arrive at the final proposal that is ready for approval, you will have to undergo a lot of revisions in the process. So, as a way of lessening the number of times to revise the proposal, create a draft first. The draft guides you on how and what to include on the final proposal. Just write freely and contain all the data you have gathered in your research on the draft. Ones you are done with the draft, take your time and proofread it with your advisor to correct all the mistakes that may be present.


  1. An outline is a pan that you develop to guide you on how to write the proposal.

If you have written an essay before then, you will have an easy time writing an outline for the dissertation proposal since the plan is similar. But keep in mind that in the case of the thesis proposal, you will be needed to include the arguments in the outline.

  1. Follow the recommended guidelines.

Some departments provide the students with guidelines or the structural details of how they should present their final proposal like. So, read the provided structure carefully and make sure it matches with what you have written. If you are having an issue structuring your proposal according to the given guideline, make sure to consult your advisor before proceeding or submitting the final documents. Most of the dissertation proposals have the following structure;

  • The title.
  • Introduction.
  • Methodology.
  • Objectives.
  • The literature review.
  • The scoop and constraints.
  • Timetable.
  • References.

Note that the administration may require you to use other structure elements, but the above listed are the most common ones.

  1. Focus on your formatting.

The kind of formatting you use helps the proposal to look more presentable and legible. Although the proposal formats may differ depending on the discipline, you are writing about, and it is crucial to ensure that it well structured and readable as well.

The factors that determine a well presented and readable proposal include;

  • The right font, the page, and the margin size.
  • The style of citation, the note formatting, and bibliography.
  • The title format plus the cover sheet.
  1. Work closely with the committee members.

In most cases, the proposal writers are provided with a committee to work with immediately their topic is approved. The purpose of the committee is to guide you and help you come up with the best and well-structured proposal at the end. The committee consists of one supervisor, and two additional members who may come from your department. Within the period you are given to write the proposal, you will need to present your written pieces to the faculty for reviews.

From there they can advise you in case there are issues that you need to change before you proceed to the next level. If you are given an opportunity to select the committee to work with, choose people who are familiar with your topic or have shown interest in your argument.

  1. Follow the approval program.

Completing the proposal is one thing but getting it approved may pose some challenges. For example, there are institutions which require the students to present their project to a faculty that will mark and determine if the proposal is worth or the students may have to make some changes. So, for preparation purposes, get a submission form and read carefully the requirement that you will need to fulfill before you get the proposal approved. If there are details that your committee is supposed to fulfill before you submit the project such as signing the proposal before sending, or verifying any particulars, ensure they do so.


If you are preparing to write your PhD’s dissertation proposal, the above are seven tips that can guide you to come up with a well- written and structured plan. Make sure to work hand in hand with your advisor and other committee members to guide you where you may need help.