How to structure a Research Project

This document aims to guide you in the preparation of an academic work consisting of the design of a research project with pilot test, establishing the foundations that facilitate the tutorial work. Its structure must be complemented with the recommendations of the Teaching Guide of the module or subject for this modality (for more information go to it). A Project or Protocol of Investigation (PI) is a document that allows to go from the conception of a research problem to the implementation of the same (Contandriopoulos).

The sign (asterisk) means that at the end of the outline, in the Frequently Asked Questions section, you can find additional information on this topic.


  • 1. Title: Identify in about 15 words the main theme of the Project.
  • 2. Author: your name and surnames without abbreviating (ex .: María José López González).
  • 3. Tutor: your name and surname headed by the academic degree (ex .: Dr. Manuel Amezcua Martínez).
  • 4. Summary: structured, no more than 250 words.
  • 5. Keywords: around 6 according to the MeSH (Medical Subject Headings) or the DeCS (Descriptors in Health Sciences).
  • 6. Index: a different page will include an index or summary that allows locating the specific parts of the work, stating the main epigraphs of the same and the page where they are.


Introduction. You can organize it based on the following ingredients:

Conceptualization of the problem. Follow the following sequence to explain it:

Field of study: In what general subject is the problem registered?

Origin, what reasons have led you to study this matter?

Importance , why do you consider that this issue should be studied? Are there epidemiological or statistical data that inform about its dimension?

Research question: includes a question that refers to the knowledge you want to obtain (then you will transform it into the general objective)

Pertinence , briefly defends the need to carry out this study by identifying who are the direct and indirect beneficiaries of the knowledge you obtain.

Antecedents and knowledge gaps. You must describe the works that you have located about the study problem through the bibliographic review . Resign them critically , taking into account that you have to consider with preference the recent (around 7 last years) and important . This part has had to be based on a detailed search in the main bibliographic databases related to your field of study.

It also highlights those more specific aspects for which there is less information available or that have not been studied previously (knowledge gaps).

Theoretical framework / hypothesis. Complete the introduction incorporating your theoretical framework, in which you make a basic presentation of the concepts, theories, models, etc., that are directly related to the topic you are addressing.

In experimental or intervention type designs, a hypothesis must be included, in which a cause / effect relationship that can be verified empirically is exposed.

Objectives. Write the objectives clearly, in infinitive and affirmative. Clarify what you pursue with the work you intend to do, which is obviously in keeping with the desire to answer the research question posed above. They are enunciated with verbs that allude to the acquisition of knowledge: describe, explore, analyze, identify, know, understand, etc.

General: is consistent with the research question.

Specific: they try to detail the general objective and are coherent with the specific aspects that will be studied (variables or dimensions).

Yardley Finley / June 4, 2019 / Research

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