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Writing and Presentation of Academic Proposal. Assoc. Prof. Dr. Vijay Kumar Biotechnology Research Institute. Content. A. Writing of Academic Proposal Follow IMRAD Introduction Literature Review Methodology References Gantt Chart Tables and Figures B. Presentation of Academic Proposal

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Writing and presentation of academic proposal
Writing and Presentation of Academic Proposal

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Vijay Kumar

Biotechnology Research Institute


A. Writing of Academic Proposal

  • Follow IMRAD

  • Introduction

  • Literature Review

  • Methodology

  • References

  • Gantt Chart

  • Tables and Figures

    B. Presentation of Academic Proposal

  • How to prepare power point

  • How to present your proposal

    Other important issues

Logical thinking
Logical Thinking


  • What question (problem) was studied? The answer is the Introduction.

  • How was the problem studied? The answer is the Methods.

  • What were the findings? The answer is the Results.

  • What do the findings mean? The answer is the Discussion.

    The simple logic of IMRAD provides the author to organise and write the manuscript, and IMRAD provides and easy road map for editors, referees and readers to follow in reading the paper.



  • Title

  • Introduction

  • Literature Review

  • Methodology

  • Results

  • Discussion

  • References

  • Appendix

  • Title

  • Introduction

  • Literature Review

  • Methodology

  • Research Outputs/ Benefits of study

  • References

  • Time Frame/Gantt Chart


-Discuss with your supervisor.

-Refer to past thesis or journal publication.

-All words in the title should be chosen with great care. –most common error is faulty syntax (word order).

eg. Mechanism of suppression of pneumonia in mice induced by Newcastle Disease Virus.

(Is the mice induced? Or is the pneumonia induced?)

- Avoid “waste” words eg. “Studies on”, “Investigations on” etc. An opening A, An or The is also a “waste” word.


Should include:

  • Purpose of study

  • Problem statement

  • Hypothesis

  • Objectives


-Objectives must be precise, direct-to-the-point, and descriptive.

-Must be written as an action verb.

-Give at least three objectives.

Badly written objectives
Badly written objectives


  • Design, installation and standardisation of stirred tank reactors.

  • Comparison of experimental studies with predicted model and evaluation the accuracy of the predicted model.

  • To establish a pilot plant based on our modeling studies in alternate configured bioreactors.

Good objectives
Good objectives


  • To characterise the bacterial diversity that is present in Lake Toba using 16S ribosomal DNA sequences.

  • To identify….

  • To evaluate….

  • To determine…..

  • To estimate…

  • To establish…

  • To study???

  • To make sure??

Literature review
Literature Review

  • Do a review or search based on current knowledge of the subject matter.

  • Don’t mix lit.rev. with methodology.

  • Know the difference between lit. rev & discussion!

  • Provide paragraphs (2-3 para. per page).

  • Provide subheadings.

    Min. 2 para per heading

  • Every statements/facts must be supported with references.

  • Never start a section with a figure/table/plate etc..


  • Make sure you provide references for all your methods.

  • Know your tenses.

  • Never start a sentence with a number

    eg. 20ml will then be added to Solution A.

  • All numbers less than ten should be spelt out except for measurements.

  • Never start a section with a figure/table/plate etc..


-If it isn't reproducible than objectivity is lost.

-Every scientific experiment should be objective.

-Results obtained from the methods used should be


- If statistics are used to describe the results, it should be

meaningful statistics.

eg. 33.3% of the mice used in this experiment were cured by the test drug; 33.5% of the test population were unaffected by the drug and remained in a moribund condition; the third mouse got away.

Tables and figures
Tables and Figures

  • Know where to write your titles for tables & figures.

  • Try not to mix photos with text.

  • Always provide legends.

  • A reader must be able to understand the table/fig/chart etc. without having to read the text.

  • Maps- show north, longitude & latitude

You must indicate the position of north. You mustprovide the longitude & latitude.

Avoid colorful maps.

Other important issues

1. Publications

  • Aim for the head… you may get the neck.

  • MSc. – 4 proceedings & 2 journals

  • PhD. – 6 proceedings & 3 journals

Other important issues
Other important issues

2. Authorship

- Who deserve authorship/co-authorship of a paper?

- scientific/ conceptual contribution

- technical contribution

- analytical contribution

Sample provider?

Other important issues

  • Plagiarism

  • turning in someone else's work as your own.

  • copying words or ideas from someone else without giving credit.

  • failing to put a quotation in quotation marks.

  • giving incorrect information about the source of a quotation.

  • changing words but copying the sentence structure of a source without giving credit.

  • copying so many words or ideas from a source that it makes up the majority of your work, whether you give credit or not

  • Self-plagiarism-Copying material you have previously produced and passing it off as a new production.

Avoid plagiarism in research
Avoid Plagiarism in Research

  • Make sure you have a lab / log book.

    • Write down every experiments/ work done.

    • Every protocol used must have a citation.

    • This will prevent you from plagiarizing other people’s work & also prevent others from accusing you of plagiarism.

  • Do not summit research proposal with excessive details.

    - proposal are meant to be P&C but can sometimes be plagiarized by the evaluators.

  • Non-disclosure Agreement

    - Make sure all students sign the NDA.

  • Publish ASAP.

  • Do not cheat, copy or lie.

    Show integrity!

    Give credit where credit is due.

    Your reputation is at stake.


    • Provide at least 40 references.

    • About 70-80% should be from the last 10 years.

    • Alphabetically arranged.

    • Be consistent with the format.

    For extra points
    For Extra Points

    • Include Research Outputs or Benefits of the Study.

    • Include some color.

    • Ring-bind your proposal.

    Oral presentation
    Oral Presentation

    • First impression counts!

      (Examiners normally look at other issues apart from the proposal).

    • Be confident.

    • Speak clearly.

    • Never argue with your examiners (even if your disagree with their comments).

    • Rehearse with friends.

    • Be aware of your time limits. Don’t rush through your slides when the time is up. Just simply summarize, conclude and end your presentation.

    Oral presentation1
    Oral Presentation

    • Choose correct color schemes for your Power Point slides.

    • Don’t include slides that you have no intention of sharing with the audience.

    • Avoid animation or automated slide timing.

    • Make sure you test out your slides before the presentation.

    • For conference presentation, bring a copy of your slides as transparencies.


    • A good MSc/PhD proposal is a proposal with good clear problem statements and aims, and has an appropriate methodology to solve the problem at hand within the given time schedule.

    • Postgraduate training also includes: presentations, writing proposals, lab demonstrations, inventory keeping, writing financial & progress reports, teaching.