The theoretical foundation of research is a justification built on concepts connected to a specific subject. It is a critical evaluation of the theoretical concepts used to structure research. It is a group of connected ideas, similar to a theory but perhaps not as thoroughly developed. Your research is guided by a theoretical foundation or framework, which specifies the variables you will measure and the statistical associations you are looking for.
Significance Of Theoretical Foundation:
The following are some ways that the theoretical foundation of research strengthens the study:
- The reviewer can deeply comprehend theoretical presumptions when they are expressed explicitly.
- The experimenter is engaged with prevailing information by the theoretical foundation. You are delivered with a basis for your theories and strategy of study selection, directed by a suitable theory.
- You are driven to answer the why and how queries by defining the theoretical premises of a study.
- A theoretical foundation specifies the crucial components that influence a target event and promotes the need to evaluate how and when those crucial components may differ
Writing A Theoretical Foundation:
A theory requires a framework for comprehending its applicability to the topic being examined, just as a research problem in your paper needs context and background material. The following should be kept in mind while you write and edit this section of your research paper:
1. State The Ideas And Theories:
Clearly state the framework, ideas, models, or particular theories that guide your research. This involves noting the names of the leading researchers in the area who have studied the issue you are looking into, as well as, if appropriate, the historical backdrop that helped support the creation of that theory. This last aspect is especially crucial if the theory is novel or was taken from a different field.
2. Explain Why You Chose This Theory:
Put your theoretical framework in the context of other frameworks, concepts, models, or theories that are similar to it. As seen in the aforementioned example, a framework for comprehending the study problem can be developed using a number of concepts, theories, or models. Therefore, explain why the theory you choose is the best one. You can also get dissertation proposal help when working on the foundation of research in your dissertation.
3. Use Of Tenses:
When discussing theory, the present tense is utilized. The development of your theoretical framework is currently taking place, despite the fact that the past tense might be used to describe a theory’s history or the contributions of important theorists.
4. Be Specific:
You should be as specific as you can with your theoretical presumptions. Your approach discussion should be related back to this theoretical framework later on.
5. Mention Limitations:
Take nothing the theory claims at face value! A reader’s ability to comprehend the findings that emerge is fundamentally distorted if it is implied that reality can be adequately depicted in such a simple fashion. Given this, it is important to always emphasize the theoretical framework’s limitations. Mention the aspects of the study subject that need an additional inquiry because the theory does not sufficiently explain a certain phenomenon.
Critical Elements To Consider:
While developing and writing the theoretical foundation of research, there are a few things that you must keep in mind. These critical elements are listed below:
1. Academic Field:
Make sure the theoretical foundation coincides with your discipline. Also, mention the other academic field in which it correlates and can be used.
2. Methodological Plan:
Does the theory make sense in relation to the methodology of your research? For further illustration on this, you can consult previous studies with a similar theoretical foundation as yours and note down the methodology they used.
3. Utilization Of Theoretical Foundation:
Your study’s approach should make use of the theoretical foundation’s tenets, concepts, and principles. Developing a theoretical foundation for your research but not following its principles and concepts does not make sense. Discuss the underlying presumptions or claims of this theory and highlight how they apply to your research.
4. Size Of The Study:
Identify the size of the theory and the size of your study. Is it fully developed, filled with numerous theoretical ideas that demand more research, or is its scope too narrow to be relevant to the subject? There must be a precise set of concepts and theoretical tenets chosen to achieve the study’s goals.
5. Research Problem:
Examine your research problem and thesis title. Your whole study is anchored by the research problem, which also serves as the foundation upon which you build your theoretical framework. You need to check if your study’s issue, goal, and relevance fit the theoretical framework well. Make sure that the theory is applied in conjunction with the developing research questions.
You can modify the research questions to accommodate and reflect the theory that has been predetermined and vice versa.
6. Factors And Variables:
Think about the factors you assume to be considered valuable in your study and the components that contribute to the alleged outcome. Make a list of the variables and structures that might be important to your research. Make independent and dependent categories for these variables.
Review the major theories, and then select the theoretical foundation that you believe best explains the relationships between the significant variables in your study.
7. Literature Review:
To come up with a perfect theoretical foundation of research, review the relevant literature. Identify the underlying presumptions the authors used to approach the issue.
For academic research, make sure your conclusions, implications, and recommendations based on the data analysis have a theoretical foundation.
How To Determine Theoretical Foundation Of Your Research?
You should read every scholarly article and piece of background information you can find on your subject. Keep track of the theories that are referenced in every article and book that you find to be pertinent to your subject.
After reading the secondary sources, go back and find the theory’s original publication, paying attention to any relevant historical background. Determine the theory’s importance for your future work.
The theoretical foundation of research is extremely important in deductive, theory-testing studies. The theoretical basis for those investigations needs to be quite specific and well-planned. We hope that the writing tips and critical elements given above will assist you in determining and developing your theoretical foundation of research.