Honors Proposal

Honors Research Proposals Guidelines for Submission
PHR 288H

Date of Submission:
Research Proposals must be submitted to the Oversight Committee chair at least four weeks before the last class day of the semester.  Oversight Committee-requested revisions must be completed before the last day of classes.

Style of Proposal: The Proposal will generally consist of 8–10 double-spaced pages (~2,500 words) under the following format:

Title Page: include the title, your name, and the date.

Advisor’s Page:
This page should contain a statement of the form below with your research advisor’s original signature:

“I agree to supervise Mary Smith in carrying out the research project described in this proposal.”


Professor John Doe                                       Date


Background:  Sufficient background should be provided so that a scientist who is not familiar with the area of research can understand the nature of the problem you are addressing and any previous studies relevant to your proposed work.

Specific Aims:   State the Hypothesis and the Specific Aims of the proposed work.

Methodology:  Describe how each Specific Aim will be accomplished. Provide enough detail that the committee members can have an idea of the intensity and time-commitment of the work that is planned.

Facilities & Source of Funds:  Describe any essential resources for completing the proposed work and how access to these resources will be obtained.  Indicate if there is current or pending funding for the proposed work and if this funding is critical for access to the resources identified above.

Estimate of Research Timetable:  Provide a realistic time-table for completion of the work that accommodates difficulties in achieving critical milestones where possible.

References (This section is exclusive of the page and word limits):
In preparing your proposal, please keep in mind the evaluation criteria that the Oversight Committee will be using, including the following:

  1. Is the proposal well-written?
    1. Are there any typographical/grammatical errors ? (if so, indicate these on the proposal for editing by the student)
    2. Is sufficient background information presented to put the proposed work in context?
    3. Is the proposal well-referenced with up-to-date, relevant citations?
    4. Are the goals or specific aims clearly stated?
    5. Is the proposed work described in sufficient detail and does it address the specific aims of the proposal?
  2. Do you think the proposed project is worthy of honors credit?
    1. Is the scope of the project appropriate for honors work?
    2. For projects in which the honors student is part of a group or team working on the project, is the role of the honors student identifiable?
  3. Do you think the project can be completed in two semesters?
    1. Is the timetable provided reasonable?
    2. Is there a clearly indicated milestone(s) that could serve as stopping point(s) if for some reason the project can not be completed in full?
    3. Has the student reported any preliminary results that would indicate the feasibility of completing the work within the given timetable?

Please contact the Program Director, Dr. Kevin Dalby (dalby@austin.utexas.edu), for further clarification or questions.