Proposal Instructions

Word count target: 1650 words Format: 12-Point Times New Roman; Name, Date, Course Name and Section, and Dr. Babson listed in the upper left-hand corner. References in APA. Goal: To propose a research plan for responding to your research question.

Step 1: State your RQ and summarize your conceptual framework. This should include a snapshot of the gap in the academic literature, i.e. the “missing puzzle piece” your research question addresses, and a sentence or two about your personal rationale for posing the RQ. (4-6 sentences)

• This step can be largely taken from the RQ assignment

Step 2: Provide further detail on the gap or “puzzle piece” you described above by using your five sources to paint a picture of your understanding of the academic literature on the research problem. As with the RQ assignment, organize as follows 1) State the main finding(s) of the source; unlike the RQ assignment, do not write out the title and full names of the authors, just cite the sources in APA format, e.g., “Jones (2000) talks about …”, etc. Then, 2) describe in a few sentences how it helps you understand what your project can contribute to “the literature”, to the best of your knowledge—that phrase is very important, because you will only be reading a tiny bit of “the literature”. (25 sentences)

• This step can draw heavily from the Research Question assignment Step 3:

*The Research Methods Instructions document provides you with the parameters for this step. You must consult it in order to complete this step.*

You will conduct interviews and observations and use the resulting data to address your research question. In this step, you are stating your research plan, or in other words, your interview and observation choices. For your interview choices, state the type of interview (formal or semi- formal), sampling approach for that (group or individual), and optionally, a detail or two you’d like to share about the sample. For your observational choices, state: direct or participant; and if direct, obtrusive or unobtrusive stance, and continuous monitoring or time/spot sampling. You should state a detail or two about the setting of your observations. Finally, provide your best guess at logistical details such as locations and times. Remember: it’s just a plan, and plans change. (8-10 sentences)

Step 4: If step 3 is the “what”, this step is the “why” and “how”. Briefly explain your choices above: tell me how you think your methods plan will address the research question. Think of it as a defense of your plan. Use your notes of my lectures and the Glesne and Seidman readings on observations and interviews for further guidance. (6-8 sentences)

Step 5: Provide a summary of your question and your plan, and your rationale for both. (3-5 sentences)

Step 6:

*This section does not count toward the word count target* In a section entitled “References”, list the five sources which you have cited here

in this assignment. Use APA format, and be as detail-oriented as you can possibly be. This step is very important and often a source of dropped points for many students.

Further guidelines:

For this assignment, you are committing to addressing a research question and demonstrating how you will do that. This proposal can, and should, change a bit over time. Committing now to a detailed plan will help you make progress. To repeat from above, what you actually do may not match this proposal, which is fine. Keep track of how what you actually do departs from the plan and include this information in your final paper.