Research Paper Proposal Instructions

Research Paper Proposal Instructions

As you prepare to write a major research paper, you should keep in mind the following:

· This course covers the history of Christianity since 1500 (the Reformation to the present). You may choose any topic of study from within this era.

· The topic must be historical in nature but may have a historical theological component as well.

· Review the course materials for topic ideas. Take a few minutes and think about what topics in Church history might be of interest to you. It may be denominational history, a biography, or an examination of how the Protestant Church has responded to a particular issue or theological debate.

· You may write a biography of an individual but it should be a critical biography. A critical biography reviews the published biographies of an individual and compares their interpretations of the individual’s life and contributions.

Your proposal must contain the following components:

  1. brief      introduction to the proposed topic. Typically this is 1 paragraph.
  2. The need for the study: Explain why this research is important. Include the      reason(s) the topic may warrant the study, e.g., the significance and/or      implication of the topic in relation to history, contemporary situation,      or academic controversy.
  3. A working thesis statement: State the tentative, proposed thesis of the research paper      in 1 sentence.
  4. The procedure of the study: What sources are you going to look at? This will      include a working bibliographical paragraph of the major works you have found on this topic. The working      bibliography must include a list of at least 10 scholarly sources.

In posting your proposal to the course discussion board, I encourage you to respond to your classmates’ proposals with substantive feedback, much like you would do in a classroom setting following a research proposal presentation. This will only make the final products better.

Please note the following format guidelines for your proposal:

1. The proposal must be 600–750 words.

2. The following section headings must be included in the body of the proposal:

The Need for the Study


3. The proposal must be in current Turabian format.

The Research Paper Proposal is due by 11:59 p.m. (ET) on Sunday of Module/Week 4.


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