SOAN 3070 Chapter Notes - Chapter week 3: Sampling Fraction, Systematic Sampling, Simple Random Sample

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Chapter 2:
In an applied context, theories can be understood as interrelated ideas
about various patterns, concepts, processes, relationships, or events.
In a formal sense, social scientists usually dene theory as a system of
logical statements or propositions that explain the relationship
between two or more objects, concepts, phenomena, or characteristics
of humans—what are sometimes called variables
Concepts, then, are symbolic or abstract elements representing
objects, properties, or features of objects, processes, or phenomenon.
Concepts may communicate ideas or introduce particular perspectives,
or they may be a means for explaining a broad generalization.
Since concepts are abstract representations, of course, they contain a
much broader range of possibilities than what any individual case is
likely to contain.
Concepts used in social scientic research similarly may seem obvious
at rst, but they must always be clearly dened.
Typically concepts have two distinct parts: a
symbolic
element (a word,
symbol, term, etc.) and an associated
denitional
element.
an important part of developing social scientic theory is rst to dene
relevant concepts that will be used in a given research process or
project.
any vagueness in the use of key concepts invites speculation
concept clusters
or what others may call
propositions
. One can connect
di'erent concepts or conceptual thoughts to each other through
propositions. Propositions, then, are statements about relationships
between concepts (Maxeld & Babbie, 2007). Taylor and Bogdan
(1998) suggest that although a concept may not t (may not convey
the intended meaning), propositions may be either right or wrong
statements of fact, although the research may not be able to prove
them.
Testable propositions about the relations among our research concepts
form a special class of propositions called
hypotheses
.
ideas promote potential research endeavors
There are some who argue that ideas and theory must come before
empirical research. This has been called the
theory-before-research
model
oone begins with ideas (conjectures) and then attempts to
disprove or refute them through tests of empirical research
(refutation).
oIdea → Theory → Design → Data Collection → Analysis → Findings
there are some who argue that research must occur before theory can
be developed. This
research-before-theory
orientation
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