Idea paper Topic: THE DEBATE OVER SANCTUARY CITIES; ARE SANCTUARY CITIES MORE PRONED TO CRIME? Compare and contrast the crime rate between non sanctuary and sanctuary cites in similar size.
The Dissertation Idea paper is in general 10-12 pages long, written in the future tense and must include the following elements:
Nature of the Research Problem
In this section, students will present a concise statement of a research-worthy problem to be addressed (i.e., why the work should be undertaken). Follow the statement of the problem with a well-supported discussion of its scope and nature. The discussion of the problem should include:
what the problem is, why it is a problem, a short discussion of the impact of the problem, and a brief purpose statement indicating the overall purpose of the study.
Background & Significance
In this section, present enough information about the proposed work such that the reader understands the general context or setting. After a brief synthesis of the literature decide what the existent literature/research lacks as it is this gap that you will fill with your research. Briefly discuss the significance of the problem and the importance of conducting research on it.
Overall, this section should provide the necessary support for both the problem statement and overall purpose of your study. Consider the following questions and support your discussion by citing the research literature: Why is there a problem? What groups or individuals are affected? How far ranging is the problem and how great is its impact? What is the benefit of solving the problem? What has been tried without success to correct the situation? Why weren't those attempts successful? What are the consequences of not solving the problem? How does the goal of your study address the research problem and how will your proposed study offer promise as a resolution to the problem? How will your research add to the knowledge base?
Barriers & Issues
In this section, you should identify factors that may hinder progress in your dissertation or in one of its phases. Some of these factors may be related to cost, lack of cooperation in the organization where the research takes place, poor recruitment, lack of participant assistance or data collection/availability matters among others. Briefly describe some of the ones you anticipate may affect your study along with potential solutions to overcome thebarrier(s).
Include a concise statement of the purpose of the study (i.e., "the purpose of this study is to .... "). Aim to define a goal that is somewhat measurable.
Definition of Terms
This section, if needed, will include definitions that the reader might need to understand in order to better interpret the ideas presented by the researcher. Terms that are jargon specific or sometimes may adopt more than one meaning should be included in this section to clarify their meaning in the context of the proposed study.
Section 2—Literature Review Overview and Research Questions Brief Review of the Literature
In this section, it is important to clearly identify the major research areas as presented in the literature on which students will focus their research in order to build a solid foundation for the study in the existing body of knowledge. The literature review should be the presentation of quality literature including peer reviewed journal articles in a particular field that serves as the foundation and justification for the research problem, research questions or hypothesis, and methodology. While students will develop a more comprehensive review of the literature as part of Chapter 2 of the Dissertation Proposal, this review, albeit brief, must be clear, well organized,
and support the purpose of the study. Students may also emphasize here areas of the literature that may benefit from additional research.
The study’s research questions must be properly formulated (i.e., QUAN and/or QUAL) and should derive from the argument previously raised in the brief review of the literature. In general, three to five well-formulated questions are usually adequate. As the research proposal evolves, it is likely the research questions will change as well. Depending on the design of the study, students may also present hypothesis(es) related to the questions, although this is not a requirement.
This section should outline 2 distinct elements: sampling procedures and description of intended sample. How do you intend to recruit research subjects? Who are these subjects? How many subjects are anticipated as participants in the study?
This section should present information on what particular instruments the researcher intends to use to collect the data. Instruments may comprise from standardized tests, interview protocols or observation checklists. Forms, existing or developed by the researcher in the context of a study also count as data collection instruments and should be listed. If available, psychometric information on the instruments (i.e., validity and reliability) should also be stated.
Proposed Research Design & Methodology
This section will open with the research design that the researcher intends to use in the study. A brief discussion on the design, why it’s appropriate to answer the questions under study, and a step-wise description of some of the steps of the study will follow (consent, data collection, etc.).
Based on the research questions, the student-researcher will propose a sound data analysis plan, indicating not only the software to be used (if applicable), but the specific statistical tests, or qualitative approach, that will address each unique question.
In this section, identify the potential threats to the internal and external validity of the study. Discuss how these may impact your study’s findings and how the researcher plans to control for some of these factors.