Proposal Essay Topics
The Proposal Essay is an assignment that requires the student-writer to create a proposal convincing their reader that something is a good idea and that the reader should consider it. These essays prepare students to write for business and economic transactions in the real world, and are generally used in the context of a project, product or investment.
Proposal Essays assert an argument and defend it; they define a problem and suggest a remedy, solution or course of action, and include if necessary background information on the subject being expounded on. It is generally composed of five or more paragraphs, each focusing on the Thesis – in this case, the action being proposed to fix the problem: the solution.
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List of Topics for a Proposal Essay
- The causes of Global Warming, its consequences, and a solution to it
- Ways to prevent bullying on Social Media, which is very prevalent
- How to tackle the problem of homelessness
- Issues with cyber-crime and how it can be prevented
- Ways to reduce pollution of the ocean
Reflective Essay Topics
Research Essay Topics
Narrative Essay Topics
Persuasive Essay topics
Definition Essay Topics
- How the standard exam is not helping students learn, only how to take a test, and a better solution to this approach, which is not working
- Social inequality and ways to solve the problem: making people more equal in all aspects of society, regardless of race, religious devotion and income
- Ways to tackle the glass ceiling for women in business
- How to get more people voting in elections
- Ways for parents to tackle childhood obesity
- How to combat gun violence, a big problem in the U.S. and other parts of the world
- Approaches to US gun control, and which are the best
- The lack of public-art institutions and how to grow them in communities all around the globe
- How to encourage an active lifestyle, since obesity and other health problems are so ubiquitous in the U.S. and other countries
- How to have equal party representation in government decisions, for federal, state and local operations
- A look at drug addiction and the different ways to prevent it
- Ways to combat high gas prices: commute via bike, public transit, or carpool, etc. and which is best
- Animal poaching and ways to prevent further killings of exotic and rare animals for money
- Combatting childhood obesity by teaching students and parents more about the benefits of good food/nutrition and exercise
- Littering on the streets: giving people tax-break incentives for cleaning communities and neighborhoods
- For teacher improvement, they should be required to travel and do substantial research on the field they are teaching
- The problem with Corruption at the Federal government level and how to prevent it
- To combat heavy immigration into the U.S. from Latin-American countries, give immigrants seasonal visas but with heavy monitoring; or, let them stay in the country, but tax them on what they earn while working in the U.S.
- The rate of high school and college dropouts and how to combat the problem so that people stay in school long enough to graduate
- To combat racism, Hollywood – the movie-making industry that impacts people all over the world – should be made to make a more appropriate, proactive effort to eliminate racial stereotypes and tension between races
- To improve a nation, its people need more education. To do this, college tuition should be affordable for everyone
- The issue of college safety: ways that colleges can be made safer for all students, including those with mental illnesses
- Ways to prevent people from drunk driving, besides increasing jail penalties for those convicted of Driving Under the Influence
- With people becoming increasingly dependent on technology, a solution would be to heavily promote the downfalls of it – how it negatively impacts people’s health, their time and success, etc.
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Elements of a Proposal Argument
Choose a problem that is important or interesting to you and propose a solution to it. Your proposal should include the following elements:
1. A claim that
- proposes specific action, whether a change of practice or policy, to resolve a problem or need, and
- is suitable for your audience.
2. Evidence and reasons that
- show clearly the problem and its significance,
- clearly relate the proposal claim to the problem or need, and
- show that the proposal will work and resolve the problem or need.
3. A consideration of
- other proposals, and
- possible rebuttals to your proposal.
Consider practical problems at Kean University; your high school; your city or town; your place of work; your hobbies, etc. If you were to choose a problem or situation at Kean, for example, you might consider proposals like the following:
- A proposal to improve the quality of advising for students in your major.
- A proposal to improve the ESL program
- A proposal to improve the international student exchange program.
- A proposal to improve safety conditions in a particular building or facility.
- A proposal to change a rule at your dormitory.
Proposals are generally addressed to someone who can do something with them, and they are accompanied by a cover letter that introduces the proposal to that specific person or persons. For example, if you were writing a policy proposal based on a social issue, you might name your senator or representative as the individual capable of taking action, but it must be the correct senator or representative for your voting district. If you feel that the senator or representative might not listen, then you might address your proposal to a specific group or organization that the senator or representative might listen to.
Some tips to help you
Find an issue that is manageable. For instance, proposing changes to the New Jersey education system requires an enormous amount of research and expertise. Instead, propose specific, small changes to the school you or your children attend. In this situation, you can talk to the people in charge, find out why something has or has not been tried, and adapt your proposal to what you find out. Because you have the opportunity to talk with your audience, you have a better chance of understanding what the problem is from their perspective and be able to make a better proposal that they will at least listen to.
Preparing to Write
Brainstorm to find a narrow, local issue which is a problem for you.
Brainstorm and research who the right audience would be for your proposal. Find someone who can implement your proposal or pass it on to someone who can do something about the problem.
Use your own research (interviews, surveys, graphs, polls) and library research. Document your sources accurately both in your text and in your bibliography. Your research should show that other problems like yours exist in the world, that people are concerned about them, that they are serious, that there are counterarguments and criticisms to your solution, and that there are solutions that can solve these problems.
Consider the values of your audience.
Use details and vivid examples (if possible, of real incidents and your own personal experience).
Create credibility by looking at the problem objectively, not as a complainer.
Writing the proposal
The following sections explain the shape of this proposal paper and give the subtitles that you should use in your own paper.
This one-page letter introduces your audience to the problem, its significance, and your proposal to solve the problem. It should be addressed to a specific individual or group.
This section summarizes the problem, its background, the proposal, and justification in one paragraph.
This is a one-sentence description of the problem.
Background to the problem
This section is an introduction to the problem.
Describe the problem, its background/history, and its significance.
Convince your audience that it's a real problem and something needs to be done about it. Sometimes, a reader might initially respond by saying, "Oh, that stuff again." So you need somehow to make it personal or show how it affects the reader.
Present your proposal (thesis statement) concisely.
After showing a problem really exists in the introduction, you need to show your solution, one which is solvable, doable, and practical.
Explain your proposal in detail (with step-by-step specifics on how your solution works):
- how much money it will cost,
- who will be responsible for implementing it,
- how easily it can be implemented,
- how much time it will take to set it up and make it work,
- what kinds of materials and labor are needed to make it work,
- how it addresses the problem,
Use analogy: Perhaps your solution or a similar one elsewhere is successful.
Use precedent: Perhaps your solution or a similar has been successful in the past. If a similar solution was not successful, show how your situation is different so that the solution will now work in your situation.
Give reasons for your audience to implement your proposal (other than those which relate to its being able to solve the problem by giving arguments from the heart and from values).
Show how the benefits of your solution outweigh the costs. If the costs are high, appeal to the values of the audience by showing that your proposal will lead to actions that lead to consequences that your audience values.
Summary and rebuttal of opposing views
(This section may go before the proposal and justification sections.)
Describe rebuttals to your solution, including other proposals for this problem.
Respond to each of these rebuttals.
Sum up the main points and state your case clearly and directly, so that your audience feels convinced to do something about the problem, preferably adopt your proposal.
Use either APA or MLA style for your sources, and unlike on the wiki, do not annotate them.