How to Write a Project Proposal
26oct15

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\maketitle

\section{Introduction}
A proper proposal for a project is almost as important as the project report
itself. In real-life, it is the instrument of funding the proposal. Generally,
it is read once by the granting agency officer responsible for the area of
study. This project officer may reject, request revisions, and finally
accept the proposal for review. Generally, your proposal is then
peer reviewed  If the reviews by other specialists in your field are
favorable, the project officer may then prioritize the successful proposals
for funding. Depending on your rank and the funds available for the purpose,
you get the research contract or grant.

In an individual study course with a professor, this process is somewhat simpler. There is no peer-review. The professor is solely responsible for determining wwhether you are able to complete the project in the time available, and whether the project is worthy of your efforts.

Still, requiring a proper proposal is good practice for later, in the real-world.

\section{Summary}

Here are some item the Project Officer expects to learn from your proposal.
\begin{itemize}
\item [Title:] Should be descriptive of what the project is about.
\item [Author:] Full name.
\item [Date:] Of this draft of the proposal.
\item [Nickname:] A very short title or identifier.
\item [Abstract:] Stated as succinctly as possible, but not vague. No fillers.
\item [Citations:] Numbered in the text, and collected at the end. (Rarely also
an additional bibliography, and other appendices, such as CV).
\item [Introduction:] Often just an expansion of the abstract, or ....
\item [Backstory:] Scientific and/or mathematical context.
\item [Goals:] Roughly what the outcomes are expected to be.
\item [Methods:] How your plan to accomplish this.
\end{itemize}

\section{Elaborations pertaining to a MA198 or MA597 project.}
Note, how the proposal is already the a framework for the report at the end,
or intermediate progress reporsts, and possible revisions.
\subsection{Nickname}
Please use a catchy, single word, all lower case identifier.
\subsection{Citations} These should conform with the customary style of the
field. Since these are math projects, a number in brackets in the text and
a numbered list (called  References ) collects the citations at the end.
\subsection{Introduction and Backstory}
These can be combined here, and the relative weight given to each depends on
the project itself. If the project is an RTICA simulating some physical process,
then describe that but also show how (some of) it translates into mathematical
expressions, equations, and encoding.

If the project is more properly an illustration of a mathematical subject,
then the scientific background" is, of course, the mathematical theory
itself. Here the weight in the proposal should be on the particular example,
and you can expect the reader to be familiar with the math already.
\subsection{Methods}
Because of the nature of such projects I will list the items I have to know
from the proposal separately.
\begin{itemize}
\item Platform(s) on which you are developing the RTICA.
\item Programming language and associated libraries and packages needed.
\item Graphics package and associated libraries and additional packages needed.
\item Here you should also mention components already completed.
\end{itemize}
\section{Timeline}
It is a good idea to include an approximate timeline of
socalled  delivarables. These consists of deadlines for progress reports, seminars,
proof-of-concept experiments, etc. These are often revised in the progress
reports.

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