Thesis Proposal Examples
The Honors in the Major program requires students to submit a research proposal to the Office of Honors Research prior to enrolling in the Thesis semester.
Generally, a scientific research proposal will include a brief introduction to the research topic, a literature review, and a methodology that will explain how the student plans to meet the objectives of the research. A proposal in the Arts and Humanities will generally include an introduction and a creative work (e.g. screenplays, short stories, artwork) or theoretical analysis.
Students will create a signature cover page for the thesis proposal that will list the entire committee, Department Chair (or HIM Department Coordinator, if applicable). Thesis proposal cover page template found here.
The following are examples of substantially researched, properly formatted research proposals and their respective signature pages. These examples should be used for reference only and not necessarily as templates. Students should his or her Thesis Chair and committee regarding the structure of the proposal, information that should be present, and documentation style.
What is a Thesis Proposal?
A thesis proposal is a document that outlines the thesis topic, defines the issues that the thesis will address, and explains why the topic warrants further research. It should identify a problem and provide a proposed solution to that problem.
Proposals representative of the sciences (both hard sciences and social sciences) should generally include the following:
- A brief introduction, which will define the thesis topic and explain the purpose of the thesis.
- A literature review that outlines the most relevant readings and theories which pertain to the thesis topic.
- A methodology section, which should include the research questions, hypotheses, participants, materials, and procedures.
- A bibliography or reference list. Most of the sources should be from peer reviewed articles or books. As with other academic papers, the use of internet sources should be limited.
For students conducting more theoretical or comparative analyses, the structure could also take the form of chapters that define and specify each concept, and a concluding chapter that brings all of these ideas together.
For students in the arts, a proposal and thesis may take the form of a creative project. In this instance, the proposal may include:
- A brief introduction, which includes the thesis statement, general intent of project, what the project should accomplish, and justification for considering the project a legitimate endeavor.
- A literature review, which includes any supporting literature that justifies the intention of the project.
- A method for accomplishing the project. Include any necessary background or equipment needed for the project, where the project will be conducted, and a proposed timeline for completion.
- A bibliography or reference list.
An alternative structure would be for students who are writing their own short stories, novellas, or screenplays.
Here, the thesis should include a clear mastery of the skill set by producing chapters of the novella, poetry selections, or the working/final screenplay. [/accordion-item][/accordion]
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