[A2] Research Proposal (Draft)

⚠️Submission Deadline

CST 23:59:59 Nov 16, 2023. The deadline is firm. Submit via this URL.

Write a research proposal about your current research project. It should include the background, motivation, plan, and expected (or preliminary) outcomes of your research. This assignment focuses on the contents of the paper. The requirements are:

  1. Write in English. Use the primary ACM article template (single-column) from the ACM article template.
  2. All proposals must not exceed six pages (single-column) for the main text (including figures, tables, and appendices). Additional pages containing only references are allowed.
  3. The research proposal should be anonymous that the author's identity is not revealed. See the “double-anonymous review process” part of the FSE 2024 submission guideline for more details.

Submissions should strictly conform to the formatting guidelines. Any submission violating the guidelines will be desk rejected without review. Violations include exceeding page limit, using a wrong template, alternation of spacing/font size. Desk rejection results in a “fail” in this assignment.

What is a Research Proposal?

A research proposal is a preliminary version of a research paper. Your research proposal may not include every details involved in solving a research problem. However, it should clearly describe the background, motivation, and plan of your research. A typical research proposal consists of:

  1. Abstract (100-200 words).
  2. Introduction (usually less than 1 page) to overview your paper. You don't need to provide many details in the introduction. But you should try your best to make any relevant reader interested in your paper.
  3. Preliminary literature review or related work to help the reader understand state of the art.
  4. Problem formulation. Always beware that the problem is much more important than your solution.
  5. Research plan or methodology.
  6. Preliminary results or expected outcomes, if you have any.
  7. Discussions, e.g., threats that may lead to failure of your research.
  8. Conclusion (also short).


Abstract, introduction, and conclusion are mandatory in your research proposal. Other parts can have a flexible organization:

  1. Discussions can be placed within the preliminary results;
  2. Literature review or related work can be placed after the discussions;
  3. ...

No matter your research proposal organization, try your best to make your proposal readable to a broad spectrum of readers (not only expert readers in your field). You may search the Web for more information about writing a research proposal.