Remember that this is not simply a bibliography listing ‘everything written on the subject’.
Rather, it should show critical reflection in the selection of appropriate texts.
Your references should provide the reader with a good sense of your grasp on the literature and how you can contribute to it.
Be sure to reference texts and resources that you think will play a large role in your analysis.
Research proposals may vary in length, so it is important to check with the department(s) to which you are applying to check word limits and guidelines.
Generally speaking, a proposal should be around 3,000 words which you write as part of the application process.
(1999): Doing Your Research Project: A Guide for First-time Researchers in Education & Social Science, (Oxford University Press, Oxford).
Students have the opportunity to follow their own investigational instincts through undergraduate research.
Crucially, it is also an opportunity for you to communicate your passion in the subject area and to make a persuasive argument about what your project can accomplish. It is normal for students to refine their original proposal in light of detailed literature reviews, further consideration of research approaches and comments received from the supervisors (and other academic staff).
Although the proposal should include an outline, it should also be approached as a persuasive essay – that is, as an opportunity to establish the attention of readers and convince them of the importance of your project. It is useful to view your proposal as an initial outline rather than a summary of the ‘final product’.