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Review of Related Literature

Review of related literature is a process of identifying, collecting, and reviewing
articles, as well as selecting and citing passages within the articles that are relevant
to the proposed study.

Review of related literature becomes important the moment the researcher mulls
over a research problem. It helps the researcher in –

• Understanding what is already known and not yet known about the proposed
research problem, thus helping in formulating a more logical justification for
conducting the proposed study.
• Formulating a conceptual framework that shows the relationship between the
different variables central to the proposed study.
• Developing hypotheses that are based on previous research findings.
• Explicating or separating concepts that are closely related such as awareness
and knowledge, or opinion and attitude.
• Discussing the findings in a comparative fashion relative to others studies.

The proliferation of research studies in communication and other fields presents a
dilemma to the researcher. There are just too many materials to review. The
researcher, therefore, has to be highly selective in reviewing related literature. Here
are some guidelines that will make the task easy”

• Select articles that cite the practical importance of the proposed study. For
example, if the proposed study deals with political awareness, review those
articles in journals, magazines, and newspapers dealing with this topic.
Relevant passages that will strengthen the justification for conducting this
study should be cited in the section on introduction or rationale of the study.
• Select studies that deal with the causes and consequences of the selected
topic, e.g., political awareness.
• For relational studies that include both independent and dependent variables
(e.g., newspaper reading as the independent variable and political awareness
as the dependent variable), review studies that relate to these variables.
• Read the review of literature of related studies.
• Review the section on method and procedures in related studies if your
purpose is to know more about methodologies in carrying out the proposed
• Review the section on summary and conclusion in related studies if your
purpose is to know the highlights of the findings and the general conclusion
of the study. The researcher should know how to quote or annotate related
studies to the proposed study.

A framework is a set of concepts that are logically and sequentially arranged to explain and predict the occurrence of a certain phenomenon. Hypotheses Logically. Hypotheses may be divided into two general types – null and alternative: • Null hypothesis states that no relationship exists between the independent variable and the dependent variable. we need to formulate a simple one. For example: “There is no significant . a hypothesis is a conjectural statement of the relationship between two or more variables. Theories by themselves cannot be tested. Materials that relate to the variables we want to study should be given priority. They are derived from an existing theory or a newly formulated study framework. Looking for a theoretical framework to which a problem may be linked or developing a theory to provide direction to a study. some background in communication theories can be very useful in formulating a theoretical framework. either generally or specifically. a study framework provides the basis for the hypotheses. If we are not aware of an existing theory that applies to a field problem. The theoretical framework helps us see clearly the variables that we should measure. However. or the independent variable does not affect the dependent variable. is one of the most challenging tasks of a researcher. A starting point in developing a theory is to review related literature. Hypotheses tentatively answer the objectives of the study. It provides a general structure that guides us in data analysis.Framework The theoretical framework presents the theory or theories explaining why the problem under study exists. They take the declarative form and they relate. Hypotheses are the testable elements of theories. In essence. to one variable to another.

instead of saying: “The higher the level of exposure to mass media. True. other researchers argue that since it is understood that the null hypothesis is always the one being tested.” The null hypothesis is the one that is always tested in a study.” The type of hypothesis commonly stated in research proposals is the directional because it is easier to detect whether the null hypothesis is accepted or rejected. Here is an example of a direct relationship: “The higher the level of exposure to mass media. We may call this subsection of the paper . stating only the alternative hypothesis would be sufficient. relationship between mass media exposure and the level of participation in demonstration. However. For example: “There is a significant relationship between mass media exposure and the level of participation in demonstration. Some researchers prefer to state both the null and the alternative hypotheses in the research proposal.” An example of an inverse relationship is: “The higher the level of exposure to mass media. the greater the tendency to join demonstrations. For example. the greater the time spent reading newspapers. but it does not tell us if the relationship is direct or inverse. the higher the level of participation in demonstrations. say. Other researchers refer to state hypotheses in operational terms because these can be more directly tested that the conceptual words. Perhaps this type of hypothesis is less likely to tempt the researcher to be biased. Definition of Terms This section includes all the main concepts that are being studied and the operational definition of each concept. mass media exposure and the level of participation in demonstrations. Alternative hypotheses are of two types: directional and non-directional. • A non-directional hypothesis does not tell us the direction of the relationship between. • A directional hypothesis states very explicitly whether the relationship is direct or inverse. the lower the level of participation in demonstrations.” • The alternative or experimental hypothesis states that a significant relationship exists between the independent variable and the dependent variable. there is a relationship.

including intervening variables.operational framework. . Definition of terms provides operational definitions to all the key independent variables. to help the researcher identify indicators for measuring each variable.