A research proposal is around 2500 words. However, it also depends on the educational institute (college or university) and its academic criteria on research proposals. Mostly it is short and doesn’t cover all the areas of research. It is only proposed as a pitch to your research idea.
For the research proposal, you write an overview of your upcoming research. It is divided into some essential headings for a successful research proposal. Namely: Topic/Title, Rationale of the background, research question, methods, planning and limitations, predicted implications and bibliography.
There is a minor difference in references and bibliography for a research proposal or dissertation. References indicate to the literature that you used or cited in your research proposal. While bibliography refers to everything you used or cited in your research proposal or dissertation with additional sources (if used).