Example for
Theory Assignment #1


Initial Observation


Theory 1

Implications

The essence of the theory is time availability. Anybody who has time to spare should be more likely to fill out surveys. Therefore, the theory would predict a number of additional observations that do not have to do with age:


Theory 2

Implications

The essence of the theory is the need to feel useful. People who are not filling this need in other ways will use filling out surveys as a way to fill this need.


Theory 3

Implications

The essence of the theory is that people need personal interaction. People getting plenty of interaction in their lives do not need to interact with strangers on interviews.


Distinguishing Among the Theories

  Theory 1: Time Theory 2: Useful Theory 3: Lonely
Non-workers will cooperate more Yes Yes ?
Vacationers will cooperate more Yes No No
Empty-nesters will cooperate more Yes Yes Yes
Nurses will cooperate less than factory workers No Yes No
Old people especially likely to do interviews No Yes Yes
The goodlooking less likely to cooperate No No Yes

Copyright 1996 Stephen P. Borgatti Revised: August 29, 1997 Home Page