The theoretical framework

The theoretical framework (TF) is the theory or model that establishes a structure to guide your research. It provides a theoretical base that supports the need for your research and provides a justification for studying the problem you have identified. The TF shows you are using an established theory to help define the research problem and the research variables, search for or develop an appropriate instrument to measure the research variables and use concepts from the theory to explain the results you obtain. Using the theoretical framework, you show the relationships between the research variables you want to better understand from conducting the study.

For your research proposal, the theoretical framework must be an established theory from nursing or another related discipline. The TF supports the contention that you are not trying to research a problem and question that is based on your suspicions alone—there is a knowledge base and theoretical foundation to support the relevance of the research.

The assignment for this week discussion is to develop a concept map depicting how the concepts form theory you have chosen for your theoretical framework connects the research variables you plan to study. See attached documents for an example of a concepts map showing the relationship of your TF theory to the variables of your study.



cardiovascular disease for African American women rather than African Americans in general; other ways to narrow the scope of the problem are age, socioeconomic status, etc. that the literature shows have not been widely studied.

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