Chapter 1 textbook notes

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Published on 5 Oct 2011
School
UTSC
Department
Health Studies
Course
HLTD04H3
Professor
HLTB10 – CHAPTER 1
Theory: an explanation of observed regularities or patterns
Components of a theory:
definitions what the key terms in the theory mean
descriptions of the phenomena of interest
relational statements (connect two or more variables)
a) deterministic: the two variables go together all of the time
b) Probabilistic: the two variables go together with some degree of
regularity, but the relationship is not one of inevitability
theories of the middle range: more limited in scope, and can be tested
directly by gathering empirical evidence
grand theories: more general and abstract. Generally offer few direct
indications of how to collect evidence to test them. Include structural-
functionalism, symbolic interactionism, critical theory, post-structuralism…
grand theories are of limited use for research purposes. Middle range
theories are much more likely to be the focus of empirical inquiry
deductive method is the most common approach to social research
process of deduction: theory hypothesis data collection findings
hypothesis confirmed or rejected revision of theory (ex on pg 5, box 1.3)
in an inductive approach, theory is the outcome of research. The researcher
begins by gathering or examining data relevant to the phenomenon being
investigated (ex on page 6, box 1.4)
deductive approach: theory observation/findings
inductive approach: observations/findings theory
when inductive method is used, data is gathered to come up with the
information needed to construct a theory
practice of deriving theories from qualitative data is sometimes reffered to as
“grounded theory”
it is impossible to conduct a study that is purley inductive or purley
deductive… theres always a little bit of the other one involved
epistemological assumptions: notions of what can be known and how
knowledge can be acquired
contriversy is wheather the social world should be studied according to the
same principles and procedures as those used in the natural sciences
Positivism:
Follows natural sciences
Only phenomena and regularities confirmed by the senses (sight,
hearing…) can be accepted as knowledge (this is the principle of
empiricism, so ideas must be subjected to the rigours of empirical
testing before they can be considered knowledge)
Key purpose of theory is to generate hypotheses that can be tested
and thus allow explanations of observed laws and principles to be
assessed (deduction)
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Document Summary

Hltb10 chapter 1: theory: an explanation of observed regularities or patterns, components of a theory: Definitions what the key terms in the theory mean. Generally offer few direct indications of how to collect evidence to test them. Include structural- functionalism, symbolic interactionism, critical theory, post-structuralism : grand theories are of limited use for research purposes. Middle range theories are much more likely to be the focus of empirical inquiry: deductive method is the most common approach to social research, process of deduction: theory hypothesis data collection findings. Hypothesis confirmed or rejected revision of theory (ex on pg 5, box 1. 3) in an inductive approach, theory is the outcome of research. Only phenomena and regularities confirmed by the senses (sight, hearing ) can be accepted as knowledge (this is the principle of empiricism, so ideas must be subjected to the rigours of empirical testing before they can be considered knowledge)