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Research Planner

Step 9: Writing a Research Prospectus

Developing an initial prospectus will help faculty understand where you are in the research process and help you bring focus to your research throughout the experience. Typically 1-1½ pages single spaced, a research prospectus, also called a précis, summarizes the key points about your research plan including:

  1. Your research question

  2. The methods and data you plan to employ to answer your research question

  3. Your qualifications and preparation

  4. A brief evaluation of the existing scholarly literature on your proposed research question

  5. Names of contacts you have arranged to work with on this research project

  6. What you hope to achieve in the future with this research

  7. An initial reference list or bibliography of scholarly sources you plan to use to conduct your research

Developing a Research Prospectus
A prospectus is a plan or research design that includes the following points:

  1. Introduction: Attention Getting Statement - This field is IMPORTANT because… Get your reader's attention.

  2. Research Question: Exactly what you will research. Your take on the important field.)

  3. Methods & Data: How will you do it - What are your sources and methods?

  4. Qualifications & Preparation: What are your qualifications to do this research (language preparation, coursework, previous experience, etc.). What is available to you that you know about to help you prepare for the project?

  5. Evaluation: Critique 2 scholarly sources that address your field of research

  6. Contacts & Directors: With whom will you work on your research?

  7. Future Plans: What do you hope to achieve with this research.

Research Milestones

Things to do this academic year.

Planner Checklist

Track your research progress.

Research Notepad

Keep track of research jottings.