University of Southern Indiana

Project Writing Guidelines

Writing Guidelines

Proposal workshops work. These OPRA workshops will provide specific writing techniques and tools for successfully writing your Endeavor proposal.

Brevity is better. Keep your proposal short, direct, and to the point.

Avoid jargon. The people who will be reading your proposal are educated faculty members across ALL disciplines. Thus, if you use jargon or acronyms specific to your individual discipline, the reader will not know what you mean unless you explain, in simple terms, highly technical words or discipline-specific acronyms. When in doubt, spell it out.

Use your faculty mentor's expertise. Submit your Endeavor! proposal to your faculty mentor 10 days before the Endeavor! deadline.

Proposal Components

I.  Proposal Title

II. Abstract

See instructions on preparation of the abstract. Keep your abstract to 350 words or fewer.

III. Research Question and Significance

What is the question or technique that you want to explore in your research or creative work?

Why is this an interesting and important question? Significance means the intellectual significance to both members of your discipline and you. Significance also means that you have addressed the question of "so what?" about your research. Citation of literature references in this section is required.

IV. Goals/Objectives

Explain specifically what you plan to accomplish during the award period.

V. Methodology or Procedures

Describe exactly what activities or procedures will take place during the award period. Specifically explain how the project will be completed.

Identify what you will do and what other individuals involved in the project will do.

What kinds of techniques will you use? Are they new or unique? In what ways? What types of data will be collected and analyses will be performed? Is your research quantitative? Qualitative? Exploratory? Historical? Another type of research? What procedures, materials, or concepts will drive your project?

Describe the extent of the involvement of the faculty mentor in the project. 

V. Timeline

Identify the time period (weeks, months, etc.) you plan to work on the project, and give the dates you expect the project to begin and end along with an approximation of how many hours each week you will focus on the project. Include a timeline that outlines the progression of activities that will take place during the entire award period sequentially. The timeline may be presented graphically or in outline form.

VI. The Student Investigator's Qualifications

Briefly describe your qualifications to pursue the project. Include your major and number of completed credit hours and expected graduation date.

Explain why you are interested in this project, what related classroom or laboratory experience you have had, what background reading you have done, what discussions you have had with a faculty member, or any other background that qualifies you to complete your project.

VI. Evaluation/Dissemination

Describe ways that you might share the results of this project with the University community and with a larger audience if appropriate. Don’t forget that if you receive monetary support from the Endeavor Awards Program that you will be required to present your work at the Endeavor Undergraduate Research and Creative Works Symposium on April 10, 2014.

VII. Budget Summary - $2,500 maximum for student-collaboration proposal

Make sure the items listed in your budget have been mentioned elsewhere in the proposal. If you are ordering materials, include the vendor estimates in your proposal. Remember to include shipping costs when appropriate.

VIII. Budget Narrative

Make sure you justify the expenses in your narrative including why the items you are requesting are essential to your successful completion of the project.

IX. References Cited

All proposals must have citation of appropriate and relevant previous works and research. Creativity proposals must also include citation of background research. Consult your faculty mentor to decide on the number of references you need to provide adequate depth and breadth for your research. A failure to include relevant citations will result in automatic rejection of the proposal. 

Contact Michael Strezewski


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