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HSC: Healthy Campus Capstone Project


This guide is designed to help support your work on your Health Capstone Project. It will walk you through the proposal structure, how to approach literature reviews and creating posters. In addition to the resources you'll find here, you're always welcome to schedule an appointment with your librarian for individual and in-depth assistance.

Healthy Campus Student Objectives

Healthy Campus is focused on empowering campus communities to improve health and well-being through:

  • Become the cornerstone of the campus by striving toward health equity and eliminating health disparities.
  • Support a community that increases academic success, student and faculty/staff retention, and life-long learning.
  • Create a culture where social and physical environments promote health.

You'll be connecting your Capstone project to a Student Objective, which you can find below:

Purpose of a Research Proposal

The purpose of a research proposal is to:

  • justify the need to study a research problem 
  • present the practical ways in which the proposed study should be conducted.

A proposal should contain all the key elements involved in designing a completed research study, with enough information that readers can assess the validity and usefulness of your proposed study. The only elements missing from a research proposal are the study findings and your analysis of them. An effective proposal is also judged on the quality of your writing so it's important that your proposal is coherent, clear, and compelling. Each discipline has its own required elements and procedures for research, but structure for general research proposals is much less formal. Research proposals usually:

  • contain extensive literature reviews
  • a rationale: persuasive evidence that a need exists for the proposed study
  • detailed methodology for conducting the research
  • a statement on anticipated outcomes and/or benefits derived from the study's completion.

Krathwohl, David R. How to Prepare a Dissertation Proposal: Suggestions for Students in Education and the Social and Behavioral Sciences. Syracuse, NY: Syracuse University Press, 2005.

Approaching a Research Proposal

Research proposals are opportunities to:

  • Develop your skills in thinking about and designing a comprehensive research study;
  • Learn how to do a comprehensive literature to figure out if a research problem has not been adequately addressed or has been answered ineffectively;
  • Improve your general research and writing skills;
  • Practice identifying the logical steps that must be taken to accomplish one's research goals;
  • Critically review, examine, and consider different methods for gathering and analyzing data related to the research problem; 
  • Nurture your inquisitiveness and to see yourself as an active participant in the process of doing scholarly research.

Questions that a Research Proposal Answers

Regardless of the research problem you are investigating and the methodology you choose, all research proposals must address the following questions:

  1. What do you plan to accomplish? 
    Be clear and succinct in defining the research problem and what it is you are proposing to research.
  2. Why do you want to do the research? 
    In addition to detailing your research design, you also must conduct a thorough review of the literature and provide convincing evidence that it is a topic worthy of in-depth investigation. Be sure to answer the "So What?" question.
  3. How are you going to conduct the research? 
    Be sure that what you propose is doable, your professor or faculty advisor will have some great tips. 
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