PSY7860 WEEK 3

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Week 3

  • Role of Theory in Research

    Role of Theory in Research

    “How can we understand the concept of a phenomenon when it’s so broad?” Tiana posed this question to the study group. “And theory, wow! I keep reading the textbook and I want to make sure I understand it.” Jordan suggested that the role of theory in research “helps frame a study so that the topic can be understood through a specific lens. This framing keeps everything plumb and in alignment with the research problem, question, and ultimately the research findings, to name a few.”

    James offered a great summary that was screenshot worthy! “We can think about theoretical framing like the frames that go around lenses in eyeglasses; the ‘frame’ is a tool to help us ‘view’ a phenomenon—theoretical framing is a structure that holds the content and keeps everything together.”


    • Assignment: Complete the Literature Review Research Matrix.
    • Discussion: Discuss how theory informs research and vice versa.
    • Quiz: Take the quiz.
    • What You Need to Know: Become familiar with the role of theory.
  • Discussion Overview


    Each discussion in this course has a couple of questions that may ask you to apply your readings, use new skills, identify additional outside sources, reflect on how content applies to you, or give you an opportunity to talk about what interests you most. You may choose one to respond to each week or you could post your own content related to the concept for the week.

  • Assignment Overview


    In Week 2, you are introduced to literature mapping as part of the preparation for a literature review in your readings and course study guide. You were also introduced to the CASP tool to help you evaluate literature criteria for scientific merit. The literature review matrix is another tool to consider when organizing articles prior to the synthesizing and integrating the information into your literature review.

  • Quiz Overview

    Take the multiple-choice quiz to gauge your understanding of the material presented in Week 3.

  • What You Need to Know



    • Use your Creswell and Creswell text, Research Design: Qualitative, Quantitative, and Mixed Methods Approaches, to read the following:
      • Chapter 3, “The Use of Theory,” pages 49–74.
    • The Course Study Guide [PDF] highlights content to focus on as you read and absorb the materials. You may also find some additional articles with direct relevance to your field in the guide.
  • Assignment Instructions



    In Week 2, you were introduced to literature mapping as part of the preparation for a literature review. This assignment consists of completing a research matrix. This matrix includes research concepts that can be found and connected to the published scholarly research provided by your instructor. Five research articles related to the topic of first-generation college students and resilience at a four-year university have been chosen for you. The articles for this assignment are posted in the Announcements area of the courseroom. In the Literature Review Research Matrix below, the first article is completed for you as an example; you will need to complete the matrix for the remaining four articles.

    Assignment Instructions

    Fill out this provided Literature Review Research Matrix [DOCX] with research concepts connected to the topic of first-generation college students. Your instructor will provide the articles you are to use in the Announcements area of the courseroom. The first article has been completed for you as an example. The first article (Nin & Keeton, 2020) has been completed for you as an example.

    Additional Requirements

    Refer to the assignment scoring guide to make sure you meet the requirements of this assignment.


    Your Work will be evaluated using this criteria.


    Competencies Measured

    By successfully completing this assignment, you will demonstrate your proficiency in the following course competencies and assignment criteria:

    • Competency 1: Analyze the methodology used in scientific research.
      • Identify the study sample in the chosen research.
      • Identify the methodology used in the chosen research.
    • Competency 2: Evaluate the characteristics, purposes, benefits, strengths, and weaknesses of research methods.
      • Identify the main themes in the chosen research.
      • Identify the research question or questions in the chosen research.
      • Describe the theoretical framework of the chosen research study.
      • Describe the findings in the chosen research.
    • Competency 6: Communicate in a manner that is scholarly, professional, and consistent with the expectations for members in the identified field of study.
      • Communicate in a manner that is scholarly, professional, and consistent with the expectations for members of an identified field of study, using APA style and formatting.


  • Write Your Discussion Post

    For help using Yellowdig, please see Using Yellowdig [PDF] or Grading in Yellowdig [PDF]. Or visit Yellowdig Forums, Capella’s Campus support page for Yellowdig, with links for technical support.

    Begin practicing the use of APA style for citations and references. All information that is not your opinion or experience should have a citation to show the reader where the fact came from and then a reference at the end of the post.

    Discussion Question

    This week is about how theory informs the shape of research and vice versa. Please post something to the discussion board related to the content covered this week.

    Note: Do not create your post as a reply to the pinned post. Instead, use Yellowdig’s Create option to create a new post. Label your post with the hashtag for the week (#Week3) so that others can sort posts by the week’s topic.

    Here are some ideas for your post to get you started:

    • Every field has critical theories that help them explain why things occur the way they do. In your studies, what theory have you come across that really resonates with you—one you think has great explanatory powers? Share your thoughts about why you feel this way.
    • After completing the readings for this week, share which reading most interested you or you felt was most immediately relevant to your own professional or academic career. See Researching Theory in the Library and Library Help for additional guidance.

    Response Guidelines

    As you respond to your classmates, share your experiences and anecdotal feedback regarding their posts. How have your personal experiences resonated with their ideas? What can you add to their ideas, building upon the connections you have made to the material so far? Consider exploring the features of Yellowdig, such as your ability to embed videos and pictures, create polls and videos, use hashtags, love or like a post, and so on.


  • Take the Quiz

    In this course, you have been introduced to new concepts related to the role of theory in research. This multiple-choice quiz will gauge your understanding of the material presented in Week 3. The following competencies will be covered in this quiz:

    • Analyze the methodology used in scientific research.
    • Evaluate data collection and analysis strategies based on the characteristics of the research design.
    • Examine the appropriate application of scientific research methodology.

    Please carefully read the following instructions before beginning the quiz:

    • You must complete and submit the quiz by Sunday at 11:59 p.m. Central time.
    • You may take the quiz three times. Do not open and close the quiz to return to it later, as this will end the quiz session.
    • This quiz is not timed, but once you submit the quiz, you may not go back and change any of your responses.
    • Your score is automatically recorded in the instructor’s grade book upon completion of the quiz.
    • Your score and the correct answers will be accessible to you after you have completed the quiz and your score is recorded.
    • This quiz is worth 2% of your overall grade for the course. There are 5 questions each worth 20 points for a total of 100 points possible.

    Click the linked quiz title to access the quiz. If you have any issues with the quiz, contact your instructor.

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