2 Writing the rationale


All research needs to have a purpose, and a key aspect of your research proposal is to justify that your research is worth doing. Key questions for you to ask are:

  • What is the existing body of scholarship/literature/practice that is relevant to your research? How is it relevant?
  • What is the value of your research, and for whom? 

Your research is likely to have a practical focus as much as a theoretical one. There are stakeholders who will benefit, directly and indirectly. Identify these stakeholders. Show how your research will benefit them. This provides a further warrant for your research.   

Intended Learning Outcome

On successful completion of this module you will:

  • be able to justify your proposed research
  • critique key relevant literature to demonstrate how your proposed research will contribute to this body of knowledge. 


Discussion Forum

In this module, we’ll ask you to post some reflections about writing the rationale:

  • What are some of the issues you’re facing justifying your proposed research?
  • What key relevant literature will you need to use to justify the importance of your research?
  • What suggestions can you make regarding identifying stakeholders and the benefits to them?  

Workspace Forum

Write two or three paragraphs about one of the following:

  1. How will your proposed research contribute to the existing literature? 
  2. Explain why you have chosen to do theory-driven research, or practice/project-driven research (as is common in the art or design fields). What implications does this have for your selection of key relevant literature?