Theory defines, assumes, proposes, explains, and predicts what the research outcome is likely to prove (right or wrong). It is an integrated body of propositions, assumptions, and definitions that are related in explaining and predicting relationships between two or more variables. Theory could be any of the following:
On the other hand, hypotheses are statements or assertions derived from theory that can be tested by scientific inquiry and that are capable of being refuted, and their tests may result in support or nonsupport for the theory from which they were derived.
You have been hired as a consultant by the local police commissioner to lend your expertise on criminal justice research for the education of the police captains, who will be developing a new citywide crime prevention strategy. As an introductory task in this position, you are to write a letter to the local police captains explaining the theories used to approach your research.
Prepare a 5–7 page letter to the captains of the police precincts that address the following questions: