How to write a dissertation proposal: grammar rules to stick to

There are four necessary steps to writing a good dissertation proposal

  • Have a short dissertation title
  • Clear overall objectives
  • Consistent grammar tense
  • A well constructed reference list

Have a short dissertation title

You do not want a really long title. Keep your title short but summing up what your dissertation is about. Long titles can bore or give away too much before your dissertation is actually read. You want the title to be interesting so that people will actually pay attention to it, but you do not want it too long or one word either.

Clear overall objectives

You should have a maximum of three objectives in your dissertation and these should be clearly stated at the beginning. Having more than three objectives could prove disastrous as it usually means your research needs to be narrowed down. Too much information, whether necessary or otherwise, can also overload your dissertation and you could lose your focus. So keep the number of your objectives minimal and clear, after all, if you do not know what you are talking about than neither will your audience. After outlining your objectives it would most likely be best to explore each one in the order you listed them, this will cut down on any confusion.

Consistent grammar tense

 Grammar is an important key in any writing project. Future tense is usually preferred when writing a dissertation proposal. ‘I will explore such and such’ is one example of how the future tense is used. Sticking to your chosen tense is essential, as switching between past, and present or future can not only confuse you but your audience as well, so stay consistent to your grammar tense.

A well constructed reference list

The reference list is usually called a bibliography and is required to be at the end of your dissertation. The bibliography can be optional; it depends on your supervisor and the requirements of your dissertation. If a bibliography is required you should find out if there is an expectant number of references to be listed. Then you can alphabetically list your references on your bibliography page so that they are neat and well organized. A sloppy bibliography will reflect poorly on you, even though the main focus will be on your dissertation the bibliography will be scrutinized as well, so it is important to make sure that it is well constructed.

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