Desjardins (2010) states a theoretical framework is a logically structured representation of the concepts, variables, and relationships involved in a specific study with the purpose of clearly identifying what will be explored, examined, measured or described. The theoretical framework introduces and describes the theory that clarifies the reason for the research problem. The information found in the theoretical framework expresses to the reader why the research problem was chosen, provides a clear hypothesis and gives a description of the theory. In short, the theoretical framework serves as a guide to why the research problem is significant and how the research problem will be investigated.
The theoretical framework is an important component of a research problem. It should be constructed in a way that demonstrates a sound understanding of the theories and concepts that are related to the research problem. The researcher also needs to be knowledgeable about the current and historical literature as it relates to the topic being researched. This is a critical component in the theoretical framework because it reduces the possibility of biasness in the research. A clear connection also needs to be made between the current study’s underlying theory and the study’s findings (Theoretical Framework in Dissertations: A Brief Discussion, 2010). Each construct in the problem, purpose statement, and the research questions needs to have literature to support the construct. The understanding that is demonstrated should also relate to extended fields of knowledge that include the research problem.
Obtaining the knowledge to demonstrate an understanding of the theories and concepts of the research problem is not an easy task. The researcher must gather meaningful and relevant information pertinent to the research problem. A clear relationship should demonstrate how the researcher’s research fits with the other research in the area (Best Practices for Dissertation Development, 2010). The research should also exhibit how the researcher’s research will contribute to the field that is being researched. The information collected should be appropriate, applicable, and communicated with ease by the researcher. Bell (2010) stated frameworks are efficient mechanisms for drawing together and summarizing accumulated facts. The linkage of findings into a coherent structure makes the body of accumulated knowledge more accessible and thus, more useful both to practitioners who seek to implement findings and to researchers who seek to extend the knowledge base. This knowledge base includes the current issues, perspectives, and controversies in the field.
According to Leedy & Ormrod (2010) the more you know about investigations and perspectives related to your topic, the more effectively you can tackle your research problem. Knowing what information is available can save a researcher time, effort, and frustration. If a researcher is aware of the...