Format of a Research Proposal: Case Study University of Buea

A research proposal is an account of what a researcher intends to do and how he intends to do it.

It is a document that presents a plan for a project to reviewers or sponsors for evaluation.


It can be a supervised project submitted to instructors as part of an educational degree (e.g., a degree project/thesis, a master’s thesis or PhD dissertation), or it can be a research project proposal to a funding agency.


Its purpose is to convince reviewers that the researcher is capable of successfully conducting the proposed research project.


Proposal helps the researcher to have a proper perspective on what is involved in executing a particular study.


It possible for the researcher to visualize, ahead of time, the major difficulties, the workability of some techniques, the cost and several other things involved in the study.


It should always be remembered that in writing proposal, it is important) that you communicate the methods and findings of a research project to others.


In writing a proposal, it is important to remember that since the actual work is yet to be executed, the tense should be futuristic.


Components of a Research Proposal

A research proposal usually consists of the sections immediately after the title of the project:




1.1 Background of the Study


1.2 Statement of the Problem


1.3 Research Questions

1.3.1 Main Research Question


1.3.2 Specific Research Questions



1.4 Objectives of the Study

1.4.1 Main Objective


1.4.2 Specific Objectives



1.5 Hypothesis of the Study (if any)



1.6 Assumption of the Study (if any)


1.7 Scope of the Study



1.8 Significant of the Study


1.9 Definition of Key Terms




2.0 Introduction


2.1 Conceptual Review


2.1.1 Conceptual Framework


2.2 Theoretical Review


2.3 Empirical Review


2.4 Gaps Identified




3.0 Introduction


3.1 Study Area


3.2 Study Design


3.3 Study Population


3.4 Sample Size


3.5 Sampling Techniques


3.6 Instrument of Data Collection


3.7 Validity of the instrument


3.8 Reliability of the instrument


3.9 Method of Data Collection


3.10 Method of Data Analysis


3.11 Ethical Consideration


3.12 References


3.13 Estimated Budget


3.14 Time Frame



NB: For Faculty of Education the Background of the Study consist of the following:

Historical Background

Theoretical Background

Contextual background

Conceptual Background


NB: For Faculty of Education, do not number your proposal


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