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Research Paper Proposal Example Turabian Style

Where To Go Looking For A Research Paper Proposal Sample In Turabian Format

The Turabian was developed by Kate Turabian for the University of Chicago. It is just a type of formatting for writing research papers. The University of Chicago Press publishes the handbook on the style. It has a certain procedure for composing and then formatting papers. The style also has a certain sequence for punctuating bibliographies and footnotes. The style is currently on its seventh edition, so make sure to use the latest edition as a guide. It is quite similar to the Chicago Manual of Style. There are many places to go to when looking for a proposal sample of this kind.

Where to Look for a Proposal

  • Ask your teacher-if your teacher or instructor is assigning this particular style, he or she needs to be able to give you examples of what the teacher wants. Ask for proposal models so you can format it correctly.
  • Go to a writing business-since this is a rather unique style; you may want to employ a company for help. This company can guide you through your proposal and all parts of the Turabian process.
  • Check online at a reputable site-you can locate many things online. You should be able to find samples of every step of this format. If you are unsure of the quality then simply move along and use another sample.
  • College websites-you will see that many colleges have instructional writing websites, on different styles, and this style is no exception. The best place to go would probably be the site at the University of Chicago on the Turabian style.
  • School writing lab-every college and university has a writing lab, and if you are not in post high school, some of these facilities are open to public use. The lab will have an assistant as well as archived models for you to explore.
  • Library Reference Section-in the reference section of the library, you will see many textbooks which have examples in them. You should be able to find one that covers all styles of papers. You cannot check out reference books, but you can photocopy the pages you need.

When you need an example proposal of any type you should ask your teacher, go to a writing company, check at online sources, use a college website, go to a school writing lab, or check out the school library reference section.

On this page

Formatting the Basics | Writing the Main Body | Formatting Citations and Bibliographies

If you are a School of Divinity student, you will need to refer to the School of Divinity Turabian Guide.

Formatting the Basics

Always check the requirements and preferences of your professor, department, and institution. They may have particular preferences for how a paper should be formatted.


  • Usually, margins are 1 inch on all sides, but the rule of thumb is no less than 1 inch and no more than 1.5 inches.
  • Our sample paper uses 1-inch margins.

Font and Typeface

  • The preferred font is Times New Roman.
  • The preferred size is 12 pt. font.
  • The Turabian manual requires that font be readable and no smaller than 10 pt. font.


The entire paper should be double-spaced, apart from the following exceptions:

Page Numbers

You can use our Pagination Tutorial for Turabian to help format your paper.

  • Page numbers should begin on the first page of the paper's text, not on the title page.
  • Page numbers are most often placed on the top right of the page header or the bottom center of the footer.

Our sample paper puts the page numbers at the top right.

Note: The table of contents (if a paper has one) should have its own page numbers in Roman numerals (i, ii, iii, ix, etc.).

Title Page

Because the title page requirements may vary, we have a separate page, with visuals, for formatting a title page as either the typical title page for an undergrad paper or the typical title page for a dissertation/thesis.

Table of Contents

The table of contents should be structured around the main headings and subheadings of the paper. If it is long enough, a paper may require chapters with subdivisions.

Note: A table of contents usually has what’s called “Dot-Leader Tabs,” or a series of periods between the content title and its page number (Content Title………………...1).

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Writing the Main Body

This will present some basics about writing the body of your paper.

Voice and Writing Style

  • The paper should be written in the 3rd (he, she, it) person with an active voice. 
  • Unless a professor specifically asks for a paper in 1st (I, we) or 2nd (you) person language, avoid these in a paper.

Headings and Subheadings

  • It can be helpful to divide the paper into logical pieces, almost like “mini-papers” within the larger paper.
  • We have a separate page with visuals dedicated to understanding and formatting headings.

Incorporating Research and Quotations

Incorporating research that is credible and relevant helps to support and validate a paper's argument. 

With plagiarism, it’s better to be safe than sorry: if it’s not yours, cite it! Our page dedicated to incorporating research and avoiding plagiarism includes information on how to integrate summaries and paraphrases, quotations and block quotes, and more.

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Formatting Citations and a Bibliography

This will introduce the two styles used for citing sources and research within your paper.

Notes-Bibliography Citation Style

Used For

Citation Format

  • Footnotes or endnotes are the preferred methods to indicate in-text citations throughout the paper.
  • A bibliography is the preferred method for compiling sources in one list at the end of the paper. 

We can help create footnotes or endnotes or create a bibliography.

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Author-Date citation style

Used For

Citation Format

  • Parenthetical citations are the preferred method to indicate in-text citations throughout the paper.
  • A reference list is the preferred method for compiling sources in one list at the end of the paper.

We can help create parenthetical citations or create a reference list.

Search for Citations

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Material on this page adapted from Kate L. Turabian's A Manual for Writers of Research Papers, Theses, and Dissertations, 8th ed. In manual, see 7.4, 7.6, 7.9, 11.1-11.5, 15.1-15.4, 16.1, 18.1, A.1, A.2.

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