每个学术研究者必须经历的一道关就是Research Proposal。Research Proposal大致对应中文里的“开题报告”、“选题报告”、“研究报告”，是一项研究开始之前的提纲、规划和陈述；Research Proposal既是为了帮助自己梳理文献、整理思路、廓清方向，也常常是写给相关他人的说明：研究动机和意义何在？可能有何成果？为什么它值得你的资助/认可/支持/批准？不知道是否可以说，好的proposal是研究成功的一半。但实际而功利的说，如果你的proposal很烂，可能根本就不会有开始研究的机会。
How to write a research proposal?
能否写出漂亮的proposal，本质上取决于你对研究的思考深度和专业水准。但形式也很重要。英文的Research Proposal自有一套“八股”。程式化和结构化的好处就在于，可以让读者直接集中注意到最本质的内容上，而不是为形式分神。对于非英语native speaker的我们，如何理解英文学术世界的规范或曰思维定势，也是写作proposal之前必备的背景知识。下面这篇流传甚广的Research Proposal写作指南，言简意赅，颇具启发，对我自己的写作有所帮助，也希望能给更多的学界同仁带来便利。
文章作者 Ph.D., C.Psych. (Research Director, Graduate Program in Counselling Psychology. Trinity Western University Langley, BC, Canada). 题为：How to write a research proposal?全文转载如下：
Most students and beginning researchers do not fully understand what a research proposal means, nor do they understand its importance. To put it bluntly, one’s research is only as a good as one’s proposal. An ill-conceived proposal dooms the project even if it somehow gets through the Thesis Supervisory Committee. A high quality proposal, on the other hand, not only promises success for the project, but also impresses your Thesis Committee about your potential as a researcher.
A research proposal is intended to convince others that you have a worthwhile research project and that you have the competence and the work-plan to complete it. Generally, a research proposal should contain all the key elements involved in the research process and include sufficient information for the readers to evaluate the proposed study.
Regardless of your research area and the methodology you choose, all research proposals must address the following questions: What you plan to accomplish, why you want to do it and how you are going to do it.
The proposal should have sufficient information to convince your readers that you have an important research idea, that you have a good grasp of the relevant literature and the major issues, and that your methodology is sound.
The quality of your research proposal depends not only on the quality of your proposed project, but also on the quality of your proposal writing. A good research project may run the risk of rejection simply because the proposal is poorly written. Therefore, it pays if your writing is coherent, clear and compelling.