When students are drafting their proposals for their research project, they should be aware of the standards set by the university board and the expectations of the professors who teach there. Different universities and different professors have varying expectations of what the proposals should be like. The standards might be rather uniform as far as the leading universities in various countries are concerned. But there might be differences in the kind of language that needs to be used and the variances in the structure of formatting.
The students need to be aware of what the expectations of the various universities are. If it is possible and if they have access to it then the students should ideally read through the proposals written by their peers. This will give them an idea of what they need to write and how they need to write it. For instance, if students are applying to universities in the United Kingdom then they need to know what the expectations from the professors teaching in those universities are. Then when they are preparing the proposal they can suitably frame all the sentences and they can write the material in a manner that is befitting of those standards.
The students also need to be aware of the language used in these proposals. English speaking countries and the universities in them naturally have high expectations in this language from their students, while countries that use English as a second language might be a bit more forgiving in terms of content.
The students also need to know what kind of supporting documentation in terms of Excel charts, PowerPoint presentations, tables and pictographs are needed for their proposals, so that they can use them effectively to convince the review board.