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A key part of your application is your research proposal.
View the guidance on how to write your Ph D by published work research proposal.
You are encouraged to contact us to discuss the availability of supervision in your area of research before you make a formal application, by visiting our areas of research.
A similar approach is suggested by Punch (2000), who also proposes writing a two-page document which focuses on the basic questions – what is your topic, how are you going to research it, why is it important.
The approach involves going through a number of stages: At the stage prior to registration, university departments are probably only concerned that the student has thought about the area, has some basic research aptitude, and is interested in an area that the university can provide support for.
The research proposal serves as a quality and reality check: it helps confirm that you have a genuine research area and that you will go about the research in the most appropriate way.
Writing things down helps give clarity to your ideas: the written word is a lot more unforgiving that the spoken one in terms of its demand for precision.
The research proposal also clarifies expectations and acts as a record for all concerned of the research to be carried out.
There area two main occasions when it is appropriate to submit a research proposal.
As stated above, it is very important that you first read and study your university regulations, which may be university wide or may be specific to your department.
These documents may well have very specific requirements such as the number of pages or the house style, and may also indicate the sort of questions you should tackle in the research proposal.