Topic: The effect of macroeconomic variables on London stock exchange.

Project Proposal Guidelines

Following are the guidelines of what a proposal should include:

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Word count:  3000-4000 words (not including references).

Format: The proposal should be written in Microsoft Word, font used should be Times New Roman 12pt., one and half line spacing; All tables, graphs and appendices are to be CLEARLY LABELLED

Structure and Contents of Project Proposal: The Project Proposal is an outline of your intended 20 credit Project, providing information on the “What, Why, How conceptually and How practically”[1] of your research. The purpose is to show the reader you have managed to arrange your broad Project research ideas into a logical account of research intention; and that these plans are justifiable and achievable. It requires you to think clearly about your research objectives, research methods and relevant literature. The proposal will be assessed by a module team member and your Project supervisor.

The following information needs to be included in your Project Proposal: [2]

a. Title of your Project Proposal

Indicating the focus of your research

b. Introduction-Background

This section should explain the rationale and the context for identifying your research plans. You should provide sufficient background information on the issues you want to research for the reader to be able to understand the rest of your Project as well as its value. If you focus on an organisation you should provide enough organisational information to put your research plans into context.

c. Literature Review

This should be presented under a separate heading. This is a critical review of the literature, provide an identification of themes from academic and other relevant recent and/or historically important literature which acts as the basis for your intended study and clarify where your intended study fits into this debate.

d. Research Objectives and Research Questions

Your research objectives should make it clear to the reader exactly what is being planned by the proposed research.  Well-defined objectives should identify what is to be analysed, and to what purpose. Your objectives should provide sufficient scope for a Project of this size, but also be achievable within the resources available to you. They should not be vague or too general and should be leading to observable outcomes.

The research objectives will be used by the reader to judge the rest of your proposal, so make sure that your proposed research design, data collection and analysis fit with the objectives.

Specific research questions (or hypotheses, if relevant) should be easily identifiable in your Project Proposal.  

e. Research Design

Overall view of the approach and methods chosen to achieve your research objectives, as well as a justification of these choices. Provide information and justification for the research methodology you propose (for instance case study, cross sectional, time trends, modelling …) and demonstrate your reading on the topic.

If relevant, it should also detail particular areas your research will focus on, such as sectors of industry or regions and the identity of your research population.

f. Proposed Data collection and analysis 

In fieldwork based Projects, provide details of the data which need to be collected; the way in which you intend to collect these data (for instance investigation of secondary data, survey, questionnaires) and the way you intend to analyse these data.

Be as precise as possible. For instance: for secondary data collection, specify the exact data sources you intend to use; for surveys specify survey strategy, population and sample size; for interviews specify interview population, intended interview duration and way of analysis etcetera.

Provide clear information on access to this data: have you made sure all necessary data is available to you? If relevant, do you have the agreement of essential people to use certain data or conduct interviews? Is your Project agreed with the organisation you focus on if this is necessary?

Are there any other particular ethical considerations you need to abide by in your research?

g. Time scale

A rough schedule of the tasks to complete between the submission of the Project Proposal and the submission of the Project.

h. Conclusion

Expected resultsbased on the current literature and hypothesis.

i. Reference list (Harvard standard)

Ethics

Ethics considerations have to be taken in to account. One week after the research proposal is submitted students will need to submit WBS student research ethics consideration form using the Virtual Research Environment (VRE). You will be notified as to what steps to take at a later date.


[1] See Watson (1994) in Bryman & Bell (2007:p.89).

[2] The guidance on each element of the structure and content of the project proposal is summarized from Bryman & Bell (2007) and Saunders et al (2007).

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