Unit II Research Proposal
Follow the directions below for the completion of the Research Proposal assignment for Unit II. If you have questions,
please email your professor for assistance. As always, you may also seek out the guidance of the Success Center; the
tutors are always there to assist you with your writing and comprehension. You may submit writing assignments to the
Success Center by using a “Writing Center Request form” located on the myCSU Student Portal. To submit a “Writing
Center Request form,” log into the myCSU Student Portal, click on “Success Center,” and then click on “Tutoring.” If you
have questions concerning APA or your writing assignment, you can contact the Success Center at
firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at ext. 6538.
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The purpose of the Research Proposal is to mold the preliminary ideas you have about your topic and to develop them in
an academic manner. This development occurs as a direct result of your research on the subject. Therefore, this is your
first formal articulation of your project. The Research Proposal is the next step towards writing assignments that will help
you construct your Research Paper.
In this 500-600-word, essay-style Research Proposal, you will develop the project that you intend to write about for your
final Research Paper for this course. If your Research Proposal is less than this word count, then it is likely you have not
fully developed your proposal or adhered to the assignment appropriately, which can severely impact your grade for this
assignment. Your Research Proposal will include the elements listed below.
Your Research Proposal should also include a list of references in APA style and should adhere to APA convention
throughout for in-text citation and style. When you write for academic or public audiences, it is imperative that you are
supported by voices other than your own. In other words, even if you are an expert, you still must support your assertions.
In a Research Proposal, the same is true. For this assignment, you will include at least one source in your description of
your tentative argument. The source cannot be yourself, an interview, or your text book. You must research your topic in
order to gain a valid academic source that speaks to your topic in some way.
Your Research Proposal grade will be largely based on your inclusion of the elements listed below, as well as your
development of the project. For assistance, you might want to refer to Chapter 1, Section 1a, of The Little, Brown Compact
Handbook with Exercises (pp. 3-4). Your Research Proposal must contain the following elements:
1. Cover page and APA formatting:
You will include an APA-style cover page for your Research Proposal. See the example on page 16 of The CSU
APA Guide (6th edition). Your cover page should include the following: the title of your future Research Paper (this
may be changed as your project develops), your name, and the name of your university (Columbia Southern
University). The cover page must also include a running head which should include up to 50 characters from the
title of the paper, along with a sequential page number in the upper right-hand corner. You can find instructions for
formatting the running head on pp. 9-11 of The CSU APA Guide.
Review the purpose statement on p. 333 of Strategies for Writing Successful Research Papers. You may also want
to refer to Chapter 1, Section 1c of The Little, Brown Compact Handbook with Exercises (pp. 6-7). The following
questions should be addressed in the first paragraph of your Research Proposal, which should be dedicated to
establishing your purpose for doing this particular project.
• What is your rationale for this project?
• What do you hope to learn from the project, or what to do you want to see happen as a result of it?
• Who is your audience for this project? Chapter 1, Section 1d, of The Little, Brown Compact
Handbook with Exercises (pp. 7-8)
• What role will you play in this project: investigator or advocate?
3. Statement of qualification:
Address the following questions as they are applicable to your project.
• What is your investment in the topic?
• What personal experience do you bring to the topic?
• What special qualities do you bring to the project?
• How might your investment, experience, and special qualities make you particularly apt at developing this
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4. Tentative argument:
Your final Research Paper for this course will be an argumentative, research-based, academic paper. While it is
unlikely that you will have a concrete idea of what your entire argument will be at this point in the writing process, it
is necessary for you to articulate your argument as you understand it to be right now. Address the following
• What is the context surrounding your topic? In other words, is there some event that was a catalyst
for bringing your topic into the public eye? (Optional)
• What is your explanation or definition of the topic?
• What is your analysis of the specific issue surrounding your topic?
• What is your tentative thesis statement or hypothesis?
Include a references list as the last page of your Research Proposal. See the example on pages 6, 7, and 21 of
The CSU APA Guide (6th edition). All entries are those that have been cited in the text. No others are to be
included. No textbooks should be included on the references list.
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