Thesis proposal writing workshop series

Eligibility: DSW and PhD students at the beginning of their research degree
Day: Thursdays, March - June (check below for exact dates)
Time: 4–6pm
Venue: tbc upon registration
To register, email: Research Student Liaison Officer, Faculty of Education and Social Work

Note: some students are required to enrol in this workshop series as a condition of candidacy (for example, students undertaking the EdD); for others, formal enrolment is optional. The Unit of Study code for formally enrolled students is EDPZ5003.

Whether enrolled formally or not, students are requested to attend the full series rather than choose specific workshops. This will allow for the creation of study groups, and the fostering of a sustained collegial atmosphere. ‘One off’ seminars and workshops are available for research students via the Faculty Research Training Modules.

Workshop synopsis


The objective of the series is to support Research Higher Degree students as they prepare their formal thesis proposals for presentation and approval, through a program of workshops organised around issues in thinking, reading and writing about research design and practice. The aims of the workshops are to:

  • support students to develop their own research proposals by giving them an environment in which they discuss and 'defend' their proposed approaches, and receive feedback on their proposals-in-development.
  • develop their understanding of ways of writing about social science research methods, to enable them to be critical consumers of research carried out using approaches they may not personally use, but will encounter in the process of writing their thesis proposal and in the research process more generally.

What happens in workshops?

The workshops explore a range of approaches to writing about research practice and emphasise the common logic of the research process, and the importance of rigorous and systematic approaches to writing about design and analysis in all research traditions. Opportunities to write and receive feedback on research writing are integrated into workshop pedagogy.


What will I get out of coming to workshops?

As a result of conscientiously participating in this series of workshops and careful and wide reading, students should be able to write a coherent, rigorous research proposal to support the conduct of their Higher Degree Research. Students will also gain opportunities to work closely with colleagues in the development of their research proposals.


Workshop timetable 2016

4-6pm Topic
3 March Introduction to research reading, writing and design
10 March Optimising your use of online library resources
17 March Writing a literature review for a thesis proposal: purposes, processes, pitfalls
24 March Writing research questions
7 April The thesis proposal (and thesis)
14 April Theory, coherence and rigiur in research design
21 April Writing workshop: the background to your study
28 April Writing workship: the social/educational and research significance of your study
5 May Writing workshop: the literature review
12 May Writing workshop: your research question(s)
19 May Writing workshop: the research design and selection for your study
26 May Writing workship: the research instruments and procedures of your study
2 June Pulling it all together: a plan for a well-justified, well-designed project

Students who register for this workshop series are expected to attend the whole series.

To register: email the Research Student Liaison Officer, Faculty of Education and Social Work.



Other doctoral workshops