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Please make sure that it is your own work and not copy and paste off of someone else work or article. Please read the study guide. Please watch out for spelling errors and grammar errors. Please use the APA 7th edition format. 

Book reference: Gray, D. E. (2020). Doing research in the business world (2nd ed.). SAGE. https://online.vitalsource.com/#/books/9781529700527 

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Using Google Scholar, locate an article relating theory to your topic by following the steps listed below.

  1. Go to scholar.google.com.
  2. Type in your topic using quotation marks (e.g., “business management”).
  3. Follow that with the Boolean search term AND.
  4. Follow that with the term theory (e.g., “business management” AND theory).

Post the link to your article here, and discuss how you might use it in your concept paper and dissertation study.

RCH 7301, Critical Thinking for Doctoral Learners 1

Course Learning Outcomes for Unit V Upon completion of this unit, students should be able to:

4. Assess theoretical research methodologies in contemporary business scholarship. 4.1 Discriminate theory and the theoretical framework from the conceptual framework. 4.2 Construct a research framework.

7. Implement a critical thinking process for business research methodology.

7.1 Outline evidence of comprehension about theories in the field.

Course/Unit Learning Outcomes

Learning Activity

4.1 Unit Lesson Chapter 2 Unit V Assignment

4.2 Unit Lesson Chapter 2 Unit V Assignment

7.1 Unit Lesson Chapter 2 Unit V Assignment

Required Unit Resources Chapter 2: Theoretical Perspectives and Research Methodologies in Business Unit Lesson

The Relationship Between the Research Framework, Conceptual Framework, and Theory-Based Knowledge

A framework is a structural frame or foundation that provides a base and support. In a research study, the framework is a theory or group of concepts from several theories that work to explain the phenomena that the researcher is studying. A research framework guides every study, and, as the diagram below illustrates, the theory or conceptual framework is at the center of the study’s design.

UNIT V STUDY GUIDE The Theoretical/Conceptual Framework

RCH 7301, Critical Thinking for Doctoral Learners 2


1. Problem a. Identify a real-world problem. b. Describe the undesirable symptoms. c. Identify the knowledge gap that needs to be filled to help solve the problem. d. Support assertions with peer- reviewed references.

2. Purpose Describe the new knowledge and insights the study will produce that will help to fill the gap; concentrate on the “type” of new knowledge.

3. Research questions (RQs) a. Identify the types of questions that need to be answered to fulfill the purpose. b. Develop the main research questions and sub-questions. c. Develop hypotheses, as needed.

9. Conclusions a. Identify the larger application(s) and meaning(s) of the findings. b. Identify how the applications contribute to the knowledge gap. c. Identify the limitations associated with the findings and conclusions.

4. Theoretical framework a. Identify and diagram the key variables in the RQs. b. Identify and diagram the key relationships between variables. c. Identify and diagram the key factors. d. Describe the framework.

5. Review of literature a. Create an outline or “mind map” of the key theories and concepts. b. Use a journal article matrix to dig into the peer-reviewed literature for each theory and concept. c. Create an annotated bibliography. d. Write the review of literature.

8. Data analysis a. Based on the RQs, the overall approach, and the data collected, identify the data analysis methods (be specific) b. Identify the validity and reliability issues and methods to address the issues

7. Data collection a. Develop a measurement plan for the variables in the research questions and hypotheses (e.g., survey, interview guide). b. Develop a data collection plan, including sampling strategy and data collection process.

6. Overall approach a. Identify the level of empirical knowledge (see the review of literature). b. Identify the type of knowledge needed (see purpose statement). c. Identify options, and select an approach d. Describe the approach.

Figure 1. Research framework for every study The theoretical framework is central to all of a study’s steps. Without it, the study has no anchor and the parts cannot stay together. The first part—steps one through three—would not link to steps five through nine without the integral step four, where the researcher creates and describes the framework that supports an understanding of the phenomenon being studied.

Conceptual Framework The doctoral learner’s conceptual framework is based on critical thinking skills. The conceptual framework is the learner’s understanding of the research and writing process involved in conducting and publishing a study, and it involves a detailed understanding of the questions that underpin research design. Answering the questions is crucial to writing the sections of the dissertation because the doctoral learner has determined the following information:

• what the doctoral learner will do in the research; • why the learner wants to do this research; • how the learner will do the research (i.e., methodology and methods that will be used, participants

who will be involved, and how to gather and analyze data); • how the learner will make sense of the data (i.e., what theoretical framework, what software, and

what analytical skills will be used); and • how the learner will report the findings (e.g., dissertation, scholarly publication, seminar paper).

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The conceptual framework is the plan for the research before the doctoral learner undertakes the study. Every doctoral learner develops a conceptual framework about research paradigms, methodologies, methods, and theories as a part of evolving as a graduate-level thinker and writer. Conversations about the conceptual framework take place in courses with the chair of the dissertation committee and with the doctoral mentor, but this framework is not something that has to be set out in the dissertation proposal, concept paper, or dissertation. Instead, this very important foundation is what the doctoral learner earns through rigorous study of the field.

Theory A theory also comes from the field; students do not create their own theories. In fact, very few researchers will ever create a theory. As Kivunja (2018) explains, the theory in a field comes from the prevailing ideas, concepts, and themes that explain how and why phenomena occur; the explanation is in the theory. Asher (1984) applies an understanding of theory to the ability to make predictions. Theories focus on different levels of phenomena: micro, meso, and macro (Neuman, 1997).

• Micro-level theories explain relationships among individuals. • Meso-level theories explain interactions among groups at an institutional or organizational level. • Macro-level theories explain relationships at an aggregative level such as “across gender within an

ethnic group” or “students across a state or commonwealth.” The most important role of theory is in providing a common frame of reference for researchers within a field, where the theory describes what is understood to be true or serves as a basis for finding the truth (Jaccard & Jacoby, 2010). Theory lets researchers put a name to the phenomena that they observe and to understand the relationships between variables, including human interactions.

Theoretical Framework The theoretical framework is the element that the doctoral learner creates from existing theories and published research that the doctoral learner encounters during coursework and the review of the literature for the dissertation proposal or the concept paper. A theoretical framework summarizes the concepts and theories that are pertinent to the study, and the doctoral learner must be able to explain how the concepts and theories will serve as a basis for data analysis and the interpretation of the data. Swanson and Swanson (2013) state that the theory of a research study is supported by the theoretical framework. Constructing the theoretical framework is the doctoral learner’s opportunity to study and synthesize the ideas from giant intellects in the field and to become fluent with the concepts of management, business administration, marketing, and so on. The insights that the doctoral learner gleans from a study of the foundational scholars and thinkers become the lens to use in examining and analyzing the data from the research, and the lens will help the doctoral learner to draw conclusions about the study also. A good theoretical framework begins to make its appearance in the review of literature for the study because it is based on the leading theorists’ work. Some theories are older than the ordinarily required “within 5 years” mandate for research, but given that, the theoretical framework in the doctoral study must offer the most relevant and current theoretical understandings in the field. Primarily, the doctoral learner has to explain how the theoretical framework relates to the research questions and how the framework will lend itself to an analysis of the data.

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Drafting the Theoretical Framework Like in all doctoral writing, clarity, conciseness, and correctness are the keys to writing the theoretical framework. Some steps to take in drafting the parts of the theoretical framework are listed below.

• Name the theory or theories you will use to frame your study, explain the existence of the research problem, and interpret the data. Remember that you will use it to perform three functions: 1) frame your study, 2) explain the existence of the research problem, and 3) interpret your study results.

• Lay out the basic tenets of the theory, and support with citations from the original theorists. • Present the concepts from the theory or theories, and explain how the concepts are related to one

another, how the researcher has integrated them, and how they are relevant to the current study. • Support the validity of the theory or theories with empirical evidence from studies that have used this

theory or theories to support research. • Discuss the existence of the research problem within the context of your selected theoretical

framework. Developing an understanding of seminal theories and bringing together the theories and components that best explain the phenomena surrounding the research problem can take time. Many doctoral learners have to review sources from the review of literature and coursework notes as well as dig further into current scholarship as they develop their theoretical framework.

Conclusion Figure 1 illustrates how the theoretical framework is the heart of the research study. The framework supports the existence of the research question or questions because without a theory about how phenomena occur, the researcher would not have any questions to ask about what is happening. The framework guides the researcher’s selection of the variables in a quantitative study and guides the phrasing of the questions for human subjects in a qualitative study; without the theoretical framework, there is not a foundational understanding on which the study’s parts can rest. The development of a theoretical framework is the element that separates observations of the world from publishable research.

References Asher, H. B. (1984). Theory-building and data analysis in the social sciences. University of Tennessee Press. Jaccard, J., & Jacoby, J. (2010). Theory construction and model-building skills: A practical guide for social

scientists. Guilford Press. Kivunja, C. (2018). Distinguishing between theory, theoretical framework, and conceptual framework: A

systematic review of lessons from the field. International Journal of Higher Education, 7(6), 44–53. Neuman, W. L. (1997). Social research methods: Qualitative and quantitative approaches. Allyn & Bacon. Swanson, R. A., & Swanson, B. L. (2013). Theory building in applied disciplines. Berrett-Koehler.

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Suggested Unit Resources In order to access the resource below, utilize the CSU Online Library to begin your research. The following eBook discusses different theoretical approaches to research. Read Chapter 1 (“Moving Away From Bad Practices in Research Toward Constructing Useful Theory and Doing Useful Research”), which is linked below, and then browse the table of contents to locate an approach that aligns with one that you understand and could use in a study. Woodside, A. G. (2016). Moving away from bad practices in research toward constructing useful theory and

doing useful research. In Bad to good: Achieving high quality and impact in your research. Emerald Group Publishing Limited. live&scope=site&ebv=EB&ppid=pp_1 https://dx-doi- org.libraryresources.columbiasouthern.edu/10.4135/9781849209540.n10

  • Course Learning Outcomes for Unit V
  • Learning Activity
  • Required Unit Resources
  • Unit Lesson
    • The Relationship Between the Research Framework, Conceptual Framework, and Theory-Based Knowledge
    • Conceptual Framework
    • Theory
    • Theoretical Framework
    • Drafting the Theoretical Framework
    • Conclusion
    • References
  • Suggested Unit Resources

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