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Research Proposals . & Grants. Research Proposals. A proposal sets forth both the exact nature of the matter to be investigated & a detailed account of the methods to be used Contains material supporting the importance of the topic & the appropriateness of the research methods to be used.

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Research proposals1
Research Proposals

  • A proposal sets forth both the exact nature of the matter to be investigated & a detailed account of the methods to be used

  • Contains material supporting the importance of the topic & the appropriateness of the research methods to be used

Research proposals2
Research Proposals

Functions of a Proposal

  • Means of communication

    serves to communicate the investigator’s research plans to those who provide consultation, give consent, or disburse funds

    2. Research Plan

    serves as a plan for action, step-by-step guide

    3. Contract

    a completed, approved proposal can serve as a bond of agreement

Research proposals3
Research Proposals

Regulations Governing Proposals

  • All funding agencies have their own guidelines for submissions (for example: NIJ Guidelines

  • These should be followed exactly

  • Download and complete the proper forms

  • Heed deadlines

Research proposals4
Research Proposals

  • Specific formats may vary

  • Nearly all proposals include:

    • Introduction/Background

    • Importance of the Study/Project

    • Review of Literature

    • Methodology

    • Definitions

    • Limitations/Applications

Introducing the study
Introducing the Study

  • Start with a short, well devised statement

  • Establish the overall area of concern, peek interest, communicate essential information for understanding the rest of the proposal

  • Identify & define the central concept

  • Most common error: Failure to get to the point


  • Any research problem should show its lineage from the background of existing knowledge, previous investigations, or contemporary practice (in applied cases)

    • What is already known or done?

    • How does this research relate to what is already known or done?

    • Why select this method?

State the question goal
State the Question/Goal

  • Set forth a clear and explicit statement of the question or goal to which your research is directed

  • Does not need all subtopics or even formal ‘hypotheses’

  • Should be a specific & accurate synopsis of the primary target of study

Importance of the study
Importance of the Study

  • Why is that question or goal an important one?

    • What’s contributed to the knowledge base?

    • Or, Why is it useful in a practical setting?

  • This should also tie in to the Background, Literature, and any Hypotheses or Research Questions

Review of literature
Review of Literature

  • See previous notes on Lit Reviews

  • The best research proposals achieve links using the organized framework of the lit review to connect existing knowledge on a topic, the importance of that topic to a specific research question, & how it should best be studied

Methodology procedures

  • All proposals should include a plan for the careful & systematic investigation of the topic

  • This section is usually the most critically scrutinized

  • Work through your methodology as a step-by-step plan

  • Be detailed

Methodology procedures1

  • Include: sources of data, collection of data, and analysis of data

  • Target population/sampling methods

  • Instruments/techniques for measurement

  • Design for the collection of data

  • Procedures for collecting & recording data

  • Explanation of data analysis procedures

  • Plans for contingencies (like subject mortality)

Methodology procedures2

  • Specific to this class, you should also be sure to note the computer programs you’ll use for these tasks

Additional components
Additional Components

  • Definitions where appropriate: Define the variables, any jargon, etc.

  • Limitations/Applications: Indicate what your study can and cannot do or show (and for what groups)

  • Budget: Personnel, materials, etc.

  • Timeline: Projected start dates and completions dates for each element of the project

Government grants

Government Grants

Finding & Applying

Government grant categories



Business & Commerce

Community Development

Disaster Prevention & Relief


Employment, Labor, & Training


Environmental Quality

Food & Nutrition




Information & Statistics

Law, Justice, & Legal Services

Natural Resources

Regional Development

Science & Technology

Social Services & Income Security


Government Grant Categories

Applying for a government grant
Applying for a Government Grant

  • Register

  • Download application package (& any special instructions

  • Complete all sections

  • Submit on-line or mail, as appropriate

  • Track Status

  • Complete any follow-up requests

Government grants3
Government Grants

Computer Applications:

  • Most govt. grant applications accept only three types of files

    • PDF files

    • Word documents

    • Text documents

  • PureEdge Viewer

  • Adobe Acrobat

Submitting proposals for grants
Submitting Proposals for Grants

  • Typically forms are in PDF format

    • Complete using Adobe

  • Write the major components in Word

  • All documents then submitted on-line

Successful grant proposals
Successful Grant Proposals

Best Chance of Success

  • Find a grant opportunity that matches well with your issue, needs, abilities

  • Follow all the guidelines

  • Keep your budget reasonable & appropriate to the tasks proposed

  • Account for all elements of the research plan (especially methods) in detail