Drafting a Research proposal RHET201 SPR 2011 Functions of a Research Proposal The PRIMARY FUNCTIONs of your proposal are to SELL your research idea, and to prepare yourself to do the research in a systematic way. Introduces your topic and your focus Presents the rhetorical stance and thesis that you will develop Explains the significance/importance of the research Explains your research methods—how you will approach this project Functions of a Research Proposal Lists preliminary sources for investigation, including a bibliography with annotation/explanation Gives a detailed timeline for this investigation Suggests anticipated difficulties or obstacles and possible solutions Gives a biography of your credentials and your relationship to this project. Steps for developing a research proposal What is your topic and how might you state it as a question? How might you state it as an argument or a thesis? Make a list of possible questions associated with your topic Make a list of possible arguments you might make about your topic. Steps for developing your proposal 2. What do you already know? Write down everything that you can think of that you already know about your topic and categorize this information in ways that make sense to you (For example: history, current issues, personal experience, possible experts, possible sources, related examples) Where are the holes in your knowledge? What are the highest priorities for further investigation? When will you look to find this information? What do you need to answer or prove? Steps for developing your proposal What methods will I use to research this topic? Be creative in this brainstorming phase—you may eliminate some methods later. List all the possible ways you might research your topic— under each method list possible sources and the kinds of information and evidence you might find using various sources? Goals & Importance List your personal reasons for doing this research List all the ways you can think of that this research also might be important/helpful/interesting to others Who are the different individuals, groups, institutions, etc. that could be interested in this research and/or benefit from it List any ways that you can think of that your research will contribute to existing conversations (scholarly, popular, political, etc.) about this topic SELL your project!! Timeline List the steps do you have to go through between now and the completion of your project. Envision the time you will need for each step/ Leave yourself some wiggle room Anticipate obstacles and account for them Check the class schedule for DEADLINES Coherence Now: Use all of the lists you have made in the brainstorming process to then write your proposal as a coherent *narrative*, NOT a series of bullet points. Sections of the Proposal 1. Overview of the topic you are investigating, it’s importance, the argument you will make (or the question you will answer) and the existing conversation around this topic. 2. Methods: How will you go about answering your question or proving your argument with evidence/ What specific types of evidence will you use? 3.Sources: Before you provide your annotated bibliography, give a narrative description of the types of sources you will, use, why you will use them and how they will help to support your argument or answer your question. Sections of the Proposal Obstacles: Describe any potential obstacles that you might encounter and how you will address them if/when they come up. Bio:Your credentials and your relationship to the project. Timeline: Break your projects into steps and give yourself some due dates including the following: Timeline March 27 & 28: First draft conferences on Annotated Bibliography and research proposal: Please upload your proposal and bibliography to your portfolio before you come to your conference AND bring a hardcopy to your conference. Name the file: ResProp_AB_Draft1_yrname.doc Timeline April 3 and April 4: Second Draft of Research proposal and annotated bibliography due in conferences on Please upload your proposal and bibliography to your portfolio before you come to your conference AND bring a hardcopy to your conference. Name the file: ResProp_AB_Draft2_yrname.doc April 10: Final Draft of Research Proposal and Annotated Bibliography due on your portfolio by midnight. Map out the rest of the semester. I will give you additional due dates by Wednesday.