Research and Design I & II

For Doctoral Project and Dissertation Candidates

Research I

Step 1.    Begin working with the Dean or Associate Dean to identify the topic you plan to address in your proposed study.  Submit an initial one or two-page outline with enough citations to substantiate the evidence for the basis for your proposed study. The Dean or Associate Dean must approve your study’s general content, breadth, and depth.


Step 2.    Obtain a mentor who has a relevant doctoral degree and can help you successfully complete your project or dissertation. The mentor must submit his or her vitae for the Dean’s or Associate Dean’s approval. If you cannot identify an appropriate mentor, the Dean or Associate Dean will identify one. The importance of the mentor cannot be over-emphasized. The mentor’s relationship with you and their knowledge of the topic and research design are vital in producing a quality study. The mentor is to be the primary contact with the Dean or Associate Dean as the project or dissertation progresses.

Step 3.    Research I results in the development of typically a four to five double-spaced page annotated, integrated outline and initial bibliography for the project or dissertation You are to complete this summary, have it approved and signed by the mentor, and submit it to the Dean or Associate Dean for approval.


Research II

Once Research I is approved, you may advance to Research II.

Step 4.    Research II results in a more complete annotated, integrated, outline and bibliography. It typically comprises eight to eighteen double-spaced pages. This longer and more detailed document provide you the platform for a greater opportunity to complete a quality dissertation or doctoral project. This advanced outline and bibliography typically represent more than half of the total effort. In reality, the dissertation or doctoral project is not primarily a writing endeavour, but rather one of research and structure and of expanding the initial outline.

Step 5.    Upon final review of your proposal, your Dean or Associate Dean approves the final outline and bibliography. This fulfils completion of the courses Research I & II (twelve credit hours).

Step 6.    You may now proceed to write your doctoral project or dissertation. During this phase, your primary interactions will be with your mentor. The Dean or Associate Dean should be contacted only if major problems or questions arise.

Step 7.    Email your final draft of your dissertation or doctoral project to your Dean or Associate Dean for review and comments. Any changes or edits required will be made before the Dean’s or Associate Dean’s final approval. The following specific guidelines will be followed.


Your outline and bibliography will expand as your research and literature review develops. From your initial one or two-page proposal to four to five pages for Research I and finally, resulting in eight to eighteen pages with the completion of Research II and approval of your advancement to candidacy.

Your research and literature review should stimulate interaction between the growth of your bibliography and the growth and structure of the annotated, integrated outline.

Relevant page numbers from citations should be kept in separate notes to be used later in writing the study. The Social, Health, and Behavioural Health domains should use APA Style. Some short summary guidelines are available here. It is recommended, but not required, that other academic domains use Harvard Outline format.

The candidate’s research should stimulate interaction between the growth of the bibliography and the growth and structure of the detailed outline. All researched areas should be listed in the bibliography but not necessarily integrated into the outline.

Candidates will be required to have their projects or dissertations screened by Turnitin, ( to show the independence of their work. All submitted projects and dissertations are expected to have been submitted through spell and grammar-check. If necessary, work with a copyeditor.

The final submitted annotated, integrative outline and bibliography may differ somewhat from the original outline and bibliography.  Major changes, however, must be submitted to the Dean or Associate Dean for approval.