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Writing Research & Education Plans Proposal Writing Workshop II. October 14, 2009. Proposal Development Team Office of Research & Sponsored Projects (ORSP) . ORSP Proposal Development Team. Introductions. Workshop Topics. Research Process. Research Process.

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Writing Research &

Education Plans

Proposal Writing

Workshop II

October 14, 2009

Proposal Development Team

Office of Research & Sponsored Projects (ORSP)

establishing research question s
Establishing Research Question(s)
  • Review the literature to determine what has been conducted in your area of interest
  • Determine gaps in knowledge
  • Identify areas that need greater understanding
  • Determine the impact of the question
  • Criteria for evaluating research questions:
    • Is the question relevant or significant?
    • Is it feasible? Is it focused?
    • Is there interest in the question?
    • Does the question probe or does it have a Boolean answer?
example project goals
Example Project Goals
  • The long-term goal of ICE is to develop a coordinated circumpolar approach to understand climate interactions in the Southern Ocean, the implications for ecosystem dynamics, the impacts on biogeochemical cycles and the development of management procedures for the sustainable exploitation of living resources.
example project goals1
Example Project Goals

3. A goal of Project CAE is to increase the representation of Hispanic girls and women in science, mathematics, engineering, and technology (STEM) programs of study.

example project goals2
Example Project Goals
  • The goal of the Aspect-Oriented Functional Programming (AspectML) project is to explore the semantics and implementation of aspect-oriented programming language features in the context of typed functional languages such as ML.
example project goals3
Example Project Goals

8. Research Question: What is the potential for survival and adaptation beyond the home planet?

Goal 1: Identify natural processes that may spread life from one planet to another.

Goal 2: Define the minimal ecosystem that is required for organisms to survive and then adapt beyond Earth.

Goal 3: Establish ethical principles for seeding life elsewhere in the solar system.

project objectives

Specific things that will be

accomplished in the project

  • Operational
  • Measurable
  • Basis for the activities of your project
  • Basis for the evaluation of your project
objectives some guidelines
Objectives:Some Guidelines
  • Ensure that all objectives relate to and support your overall project goal.
  • Ensure that your objectives correlate with a specific goal.
  • Delineate a reasonable number of objectives, presented in a logical order.
    • “Why” objectives are generally stronger than “What” objectives.
  • Make sure no objective is dependent on the successful outcome of another.
smart objectives
Smart Objectives

Specific: concrete, detailed, and well defined

Measurable: concrete criteria for measuring success; helps define when objective is achieved

Achievable: ability to attain with effort and commitment; feasible and actionable

Realistic: considers resources, e.g., equipment, time, and people

Time-bound: defined timeline


Strong & Weak Verbs for Objectives


  • to increase
  • to determine
  • to create/design
  • to evaluate/analyze
  • to describe
  • to calculate
  • to contrast
  • to classify


  • to promote
  • to encourage
  • to understand
  • to become aware
  • to work with
  • to support
  • to grasp
  • to study
common errors
Common Errors
  • Too specific to be meaningful
  • Too broad to be measureable
  • Too many to be manageable
    • Too few to be comprehensive
  • Too arbitrary to be relevant
  • Too boilerplate or “cookie cutter” to be individualized

Time Limit: 5 minutes


Time Limit: 10 minutes

common research plan components
CommonResearch Plan Components
  • Introduction (motivation; overarching goal; research questions and/or hypothesis)
  • Goals & objectives (specific aims)
  • Background and significance/ related work
    • Research plan (design, methods /approach)
    • Education plan
  • Project management – timeline
  • Evaluation
  • Dissemination
integrating research education
Integrating Research & Education

Effective integration of research and education at all levels generates a synergy in which the process of discovery stimulates learning and assures that the findings and methods of research are quickly and effectively communicated in a broader context and to a larger audience.

NSF Career Program Solicitation


What is Integrating Research

and Education?

 Not a “tack on” to your research project

 The best integration is mutuallyenhancing – research enhances the education activity, education activity enhances the research

 Happens at different levels of education and different levels of formality

Slide from QEM Network Presentation “Integrating Research & Education

HBCU-UP LDI August 11, 2009. Karen D. King, Ph.D.



  • What kind of activities could you incorporate in your proposal that would integrate education into your research plan?

Time Limit: 5 minutes

  • Share your answer with the group.
  • Discussion:
    • How do the proposed activities mutually enhance research and education?
    • How do the activities include students?
    • How do the activities relate to your long-term research goal?

Time Limit: 15 minutes


Report Out

Time Limit: 5 minutes

strategies integrating research education

Incorporate educational objectives into the research plan

  • Include students in the research activities
  • Develop collaborations and outreach activities with the community college or K-12 schools
  • Establish mentoring programs
  • Integrate research results into courses & curriculum
  • Disseminate results to broad audiences to include formal and informal learning sites
  • Link to education and outreach programs on campus
Strategies: Integrating Research & Education
linking to programs at utep
Linking to Programs at UTEP
  • Upward Bound: (Contact: Tita Yanar)
  • Gear UP:(Contact: Juliette Caire)
  • Talent Search: (Contact: Carol Hicks)
  • Mother-Daughter: (Contact: Josie Tinajero or Luz Rolon)
  • Engineering (Contacts for Engineering Programs: Peter Golding, Associate Dean & Gabby Gandara)



Engineering Ambassadors:


Pathways: (Contact Aaron Velasco)

CenMaSTER: Center for Mathematics, Science and Technology Education and Research (Contact: Laura Serpa)


Proposal Development Team

  • Contact Information

ORSP Development Team

Proposal Writing Workshops

Fall 2009

Session III - October 26th

Selling Your Idea


Location: Blumberg Auditorium (UTEP Library)

Session IV - November 11th

Project Management, Evaluation

& Assessment


  • Location: Blumberg Auditorium (UTEP Library)

Session V - December 2nd

Budget Preparation


  • Location: Blumberg Auditorium (UTEP Library)