A key part of your application is your research proposal.Whether you are applying for a self-funded or studentship you should follow the guidance below.
Consider not only methods that other researchers have used but methods of data gathering that have not been used but perhaps could be.
Be specific about the methodological approaches you plan to undertake to obtain information, the techniques you would use to analyze the data, and the tests of external validity to which you commit yourself [i.e., the trustworthiness by which you can generalize from your study to other people, places, events, and/or periods of time].
The only elements missing from a research proposal are the findings of the study and your analysis of those results. This section can be melded into your introduction or you can create a separate section to help with the organization and narrative flow of your proposal.
Finally, an effective proposal is judged on the quality of your writing and, therefore, it is important that your writing is coherent, clear, and compelling. This is where you explain the context of your proposal and describe in detail why it's important.
For part-time study your research should be completed within six years, with writing up completed by the eighth year.
The goal of a research proposal is to present and justify the need to study a research problem and to present the practical ways in which the proposed study should be conducted. Approach it with the intention of leaving your readers feeling like--"Wow, that's an exciting idea and I can’t wait to see how it turns out!
Approach writing this section with the thought that you can’t assume your readers will know as much about the research problem as you do.
Note that this section is not an essay going over everything you have learned about the topic; instead, you must choose what is relevant to help explain the goals for your study.
Since a literature review is information dense, it is crucial that this section is intelligently structured to enable a reader to grasp the key arguments underpinning your study in relation to that of other researchers.
A good strategy is to break the literature into "conceptual categories" [themes] rather than systematically describing groups of materials one at a time.