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Difference Between Conceptual And Theoretical Framework

theoretical vs conceptual framework

Position your theoretical framework within a broader context of related frameworks, concepts, models, or theories. As noted in the example above, there will likely be several concepts, theories, or models that can be used to help develop a framework for understanding the research problem. Clearly describe the framework, concepts, models, or specific theories that underpin your study. This includes noting who the key theorists are in the field who have conducted research on the problem you are investigating and, when necessary, the historical context that supports the formulation of that theory. This latter element is particularly important if the theory is relatively unknown or it is borrowed from another discipline. Think of theories as the conceptual basis for understanding, analyzing, and designing ways to investigate relationships within social systems.

  • Researchers actively and subjectively construct research findings in collaboration with study participants.‡ Research questions in this approach explore phenomena or assumptions to increase our understanding of them.
  • This approach represents the most fully inductive approach to subjectivist inductive research.
  • For some researchers, the decision as to which theory or theories will inform the final interpretations of the data is a choice that can only be finalized during the data collection and analysis cycles.
  • The national presentation was delivered before Public Administration graduate students in Washington DC.
  • Even though most news organisation have compelling styles to which all newly employed journalists must adapt, the bottom line is that each journalist learns differently, and applies and interprets these values and styles differently.
  • Indeed, the proposed framework strives to explore financial diversification as a strategy for promoting financial stability.

Introduces your research and how it will advance your field of practice. A conceptual framework should include concepts applicable to the field of study. These can be in the field or neighboring fields – as long as important details are captured and the framework is relevant to the problem. The terms “theoretical framework” and “conceptual framework” are often used interchangeably but there are key differences between the two. The same research topic can be approached differently within different theoretical frameworks.

Research questions in this approach tend to focus on testing underlying assumptions about how something works by testing a cause-and-effect relationship underpinning a phenomenon. When a study is designed around a theoretical framework, the theory is the primary means in which the research problem is understood and investigated. Although theoretical frameworks tend to be used in quantitative studies, you will also see this approach in qualitative research. Attitudes to be developed include determination, motivation, love of subject and a concern for quality and detail. A substantial development in my thinking in relation to attitudes to learning, inspired by collaboration with Stephen Heppell, was the concept of delight. The challenge to script and present a Teacher’s TV programme, Happiest Days?

What Is Conceptual Or Theoretical Framework In The Research Study?

Note that Shields and Rangarajan do not claim that the above are the only framework-purpose pairing. Nor do they claim the system is applicable to inductive forms of empirical research. Rather, the conceptual framework-research purpose pairings they propose are useful and provide new scholars a point of departure to develop their own research design. The use of the term conceptual framework crosses both scale and contexts (social science, marketing, applied science, art etc.).

Many schools of thoughts exist as it relates to theoretical and conceptual frameworks. Definitions are ever expanding as qualitative research continues to evolve. But a theoretical frame is designed to help you understand what it means. A conceptual framework can be described as a simplified version of a theory.

theoretical vs conceptual framework

It is rather a collection of principles applicable to one area of study. While conceptual frameworks can be more precise and general, theoretical ones are more abstract and detailed. Important distinctions between theoretical framework vs conceptual frameworkare important when understanding how research is carried out. Although both are valid approaches, they each have advantages and drawbacks. There are many differences between traditional and conceptual frameworks.

How To Make A Conceptual Framework

The conceptual framework specifies the variables that will have to be explored in the investigation. In this example, the variable “teaching method” represents stimulus while the theoretical vs conceptual framework “students’ academic performance” represents the response. The variables make clear the kind of statistical treatment that will have to be used to analyze the relationship.

The corporate portfolio framework is useful to my dissertation because the proposed study is a socioeconomic paper that strives to understand the viability of using a financial diversification strategy to improve the financial position of Clayton County Library. The framework contributes to promoting the institution’s financial goals by identifying possible sources of finance for improving the library’s financial position (Frandsen & Johansen, 2013).

Although they are both used to understand a research problem and guide the development, collection, and analysis of research, it’s important to understand the difference between the two. When working on coursework or dissertation research, make sure to clarify what is being asked and any specific course or program requirements.

Importance Of Theory

Our descriptions of objectivist deductive and subjectivist inductive approaches are not tied to specific paradigms. Instead, these research approaches can be used across paradigms.26 Our descriptions should act as guideposts for when and how to engage with theory, theoretical frameworks, and conceptual frameworks. The real work of research is negotiating across these terms when we put them into action in our projects. This is an opinion piece on the subject of whether or not ‘theoretical’ and ‘conceptual’ frameworks are conceptual synonyms, or they refer to different constructs. Although, generally, a lot of literature uses these two terms interchangeably – suggesting that they are conceptually equivalent, the researcher argues that these are two different constructs – both by definition and as actualised during the research process. The researcher then subsequently argues that whereas a deductive approach to literature review typically makes use of theories and theoretical frameworks, the inductive approach tends to lead to the development of a conceptual framework – which may take the form of a model.

The issue of digital communication and its appeal to individualism as an influential determinant of identity is clearer now than before. Located within the ideas of Manuel Castells , the emerging networked relationship limits the workings of institutional analysis and rather draws attention to the relationship between the self and the net. Studies analysing media content must make explicit the symbolic environment within which the content is situated, in order to delimit the two blurring areas of research — what shapes the content and what impact it has .

  • Identifying and learning about theories requires a different search strategy than other types of research.
  • This is the work the researcher engages in to demonstrate how theory informs all aspects of the study design.
  • When used as a separate term, “theoretical framework” always refers to the larger ideas governing research and study.
  • My dissertation will use the modern portfolio theory as the main theoretical framework.
  • In my view, at the heart of this is the establishment and improvement of mental models.
  • The basic rationalisation in this study is that news factors and values are individual behaviour and attributes that most journalists gained through education, either in school or on the job.
  • Although the past tense can be used to describe the history of a theory or the role of key theorists, the construction of your theoretical framework is happening now.

Many graduating college students and even graduate students have difficulty coming up with the conceptual framework and the theoretical framework of their thesis, a required section in thesis writing that serves as the students’ map on their first venture into research. The conceptual framework is almost always confused with the theoretical framework of the study.

Common Differences Between A Conceptual And Theoretical Framework

Reality is never accurately represented in such a simplistic way; if you imply that it can be, you fundamentally distort a reader’s ability to understand the findings that emerge. Given this, always note the limitiations of the theoretical framework you’ve chosen [i.e., what parts of the research problem require further investigation because the theory does not explain a certain phenomena]. Having a theory helps you to identify the limits to those generalizations.

theoretical vs conceptual framework

Taylor & Francis requires you to delay making an Accepted Manuscript version of your article available if you are not publishing Open Access. As you move through your study, you may need to revise your framework. A theory has been extensively tested and is generally accepted among scholars; a hypothesis is a speculative guess that has yet to be tested. Means to guide and inform research so that it can, in turn, guide research efforts and improve professional practice. The objective of this study is to disprove astronomer Asaph Hall’s 1877 theory that Mars has only two moons orbiting it. For example, if you’re studying Mars’ moons, you might evaluate research from astronomers, astrophysicists or other scientists to determine whether their work supports or denies the existence of another Mars moon. However, the protein powder provides more structure and assurance in helping you to reach your goal.

To that end, the following roles served by a theory can help guide the development of your framework. The theoretical framework is most often not something readily found within the literature. You must review course readings and pertinent research studies for theories and analytic models that are relevant to the research problem you are investigating. The selection of a theory should depend on its appropriateness, ease of application, and explanatory power. If you’re planning to conduct a study or write a research paper, consider using a theoretical framework to organize your work.

Difference Between Conceptual And Theoretical Framework

For example, a psychologist writing a paper may be working in a Freudian, Jungian or behaviorist theoretical framework. A theoretical framework provides a large, overarching structure of ideas that the researcher can then draw from in beginning to analyze a phenomenon or a text. Notice in the illustrative example that the theoretical framework basically differs from the conceptual framework in terms of scope.

Be sure to always connect theory to the analysis and to explain in the discussion part of your paper how the theoretical framework you chose fit the research problem, or if appropriate, was inadequate in explaining the phenomenon you were investigating. The goal of a theoretical framework is to connect your research to existing knowledge and provide an explicit statement of theoretical assumptions to the reader. It helps you to lay the foundation that will support your analysis and help you to interpret your results and make broader generalizations. An analytical framework is, the way I see it, a model that helps explain how a certain type of analysis will be conducted. For example, in this paper, Franks and Cleaver develop an analytical framework that includes scholarship on poverty measurement to help us understand how water governance and poverty are interrelated. Other authors describe an analytical framework as a “conceptual framework that helps analyse particular phenomena”, as posited here, ungated version can be read here.

Its converse and, I suggest, closely related mental model is that of throwing a ball to arrive at a particular place at a particular time. In both cases, learner’s knowledge is argued to be modified by on-going experiences. Defined by Buckminster Fuller , Design Science brought systematisation to the design process, and became understood as the scientific study of design . This paper was written and submitted to our database by a student to assist your with your own studies.

Theoretical And Conceptual Frameworks Of The Study

Design as a verb entails the process of imaginative formation of an entity. The theoretical framework leads into the conceptual framework, which is a specific exploration of an aspect of the theoretical framework. In other words, the conceptual framework is used to arrive at a hypothesis.

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