Writing a Research Proposal


Course Objective

By the end of this course, you have advanced knowledge about design,
methodology, procedure and data analysis, in order to answer social
research questions (KU3), are able to formulate good arguments on the
scientific and societal relevance of research design and results (JF10),
and are able to reflect on the social and ethical aspects of the
collection and analysis of big and small data, and of the dissemination
and application of research results (JF11). You learn to write a
research proposal that can be submitted to a funding agency, that
clearly presents the research design, and its expected results, and
makes a convincing case for funding (C13). You will learn to work in an
interdisciplinary and/or multimethodological research environment (L14),
abide by ethical values and codes of conduct (LS16), and reflect on
their own learning skills and abilities (LS17).

Course Content

This course aims to support you in further developing and delimiting
your research question, to review and evaluate the literature, and to
determine appropriate methodologies for their research project. During
the course you specify a research plan. The course will teach you to
position your research vis-à-vis an established body of literature,
identifying gaps in the literature and new ideas in their own research.
You are encouraged to come up with a multimethod approach to answering
their research question - preferably creative combinations of
qualitative and quantitative research methods.

Teaching Methods

In the course, we use different teaching formats:
- Weekly plenary meetings last approximately 3 hours with a 20-minute
break. In these meetings, students and lecturers discuss approaches and
methods based on the assigned literature and literature suggested by
students, report on the progress of individual projects, and receive
feedback. Different educational formats will be applied during the
plenary meetings – mini-lectures, group assignments, and
interactive/flipped formats
- Before each plenary meeting, you submit a brief report to the group.
These reports will serve to focus the discussion, and to generate peer
feedback from other participants (integrated in the peer group learning
- Smaller group meetings take place in between plenary meetings. In
these meetings, you receive and share draft texts and literature
suggestions relating to individual projects and provide tailored advice
on them. Where applicable, they collaborate on complementary research
pro-jects (for example, taking a quantitative versus a qualitative
approach to the same problem, or studying different cases relating to
the same conceptual issue).
- Finally, you meet with your (prospective) thesis supervisor
individually on a weekly basis. During these meetings, you will discuss
the theoretical/methodological content, progress, and writing of the
research proposal.

Method of Assessment

Assessment includes proposal outline (15%), midterm presentation (10%),
presentation of the concept proposal (15%), final research proposal
(30%) and class participation (30%).

Target Audience

Students Research Master Societal Resilience

Recommended background knowledge

This course builds on the elective courses in P4 by taking the tentative
research questions these have as an outcome, as an input. Also, the
course builds on the theoretical and methodological foundations of the
previous courses.

General Information

Course Code S_WRP
Credits 6 EC
Period P5
Course Level 600
Language of Tuition English
Faculty Faculty of Social Sciences
Course Coordinator dr. I.E. Vermeulen
Examiner dr. I.E. Vermeulen
Teaching Staff prof. dr. P.D. Nyiri
dr. I.E. Vermeulen

Practical Information

You need to register for this course yourself

Teaching Methods Study Group, Reading