A dissertation research plan

The application for postgraduate studies should include a research plan. One of the selection criteria for postgraduate studies is quality and feasibility of the research plan (JyU Graduate School for Doctoral Studies). The research plan is written in either Finnish or English and its length is 2–4 pages. The research plan is free of form, but it must contain:

1. The preliminary title of the thesis

2. The supervisor(s)

Give the name(s) of the supervisor(s). If you have more than one supervisor, describe their role in your PhD project.

3. Introduction

The introduction contains a short literature review of research already done on the topic, giving theoretical background for the thesis. Explain expected contribution of your thesis to the topic in question. The introduction ends with the focus of the thesis, outlining the main goals and stating the research questions of the thesis.

4. Methods

A description of methods, which will be used to address the research questions.

5. Schedule

The schedule must be designed so that the doctoral degree can be completed within 4 years of full-time work (General principles of the University of Jyväskylä Graduate School for Doctoral Studies). Make a more detailed research plan for the first year and then a more general one for the following years. Brake up the research into milestones that helps you to verify that your research is on track and on schedule. Give a timeline for experiments/data collection, analyzing the data, writing, manuscripts submission, the steps in the dissertation process, and graduation. You can also include a research visit to a research institute/university abroad or in Finland.

See an example of a typical timeline for PhD project.

6. References

A free-form reference list.