How Do You Write A Good Dissertation Proposal In Civil Engineering?


There was a time when wondered the exact same thing. I was in my final year in graduate school and was quickly approaching my dissertation proposal deadline without a clue on what one was and what characteristics it needed to be considered “good.” I turned to some professional assistance provided by one of the top academic writing agencies out there and received a great sample document that showed me exactly what I needed to do. Here is what I learned:

  • Narrow the Topic Down
  • When you first get to writing the first draft of your dissertation proposal, it’s important that you spend a few minutes thinking about how you can narrow down your topic within civil engineering. The more precise your topic the more likely it is that it will be approved.

  • What to Include
  • Your proposal should include several common key aspects as follow: the intro, the methodology, goals and objectives, the literature review, and research constraints. More detail about each follows below.

  • Introduction
  • This is the easiest part of the dissertation proposal. It simply states your research question(s) and gives a little background on the topic. You may also include a couple of sentence connecting your topic to the broader issues surrounding it, however you don’t want this section to be longer than four or five sentences.

  • Methodology
  • This is place where you point out how you plan on conducting your research. Some studies are empirical while others are non-empirical. Your topic should consider the most appropriate approach, considering everything from the level of detail your topic and course requires.

  • Goals and Objectives
  • In this section you should state in exact terms what you hope to achieve and what you believe the outcomes of your study will be. Keep in mind that your work should add to the discipline in some way, so consider different ways you will be furthering research in your specific topic area.

  • Literature Review
  • This section should list the written works (articles, essays, reports, etc.) you intend on referencing or consulting in your research. This is an important component of the proposal because it gives your advisor a clearer idea about your approach and could lead to some additional reading recommendations.

  • Research Constraints
  • Finally, the last thing you’re going to want to include are the constraints on the research you plan to perform. Some civil engineering topic ideas are simply too broad and lead to a number of complex ideas that you will simply be unable to research thoroughly. By stating clearly what limitations your work has, you convey that you understand those larger issues you will be unable to cover.

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