As researchers use scholarly literature for both theory testing and theory building, they concentrate on the sources within their area of research. First, they determine what has been studied but has limits and further perspectives. Information about the limits and further research perspectives helps the researcher understand what gaps exist and how the angle of perception can be further developed or even changed. From literature review, the researcher conceptualizes the area of research and identifies key concepts used by other researcher in similar studies. From repeated references to certain sources, the researcher identifies seminal work in a selected area of interest (Babbie, 2017). The research conducted by Stedman-Smith, DuBois, and Grey (2015) tested the theory of planned behavior. The researchers’ theoretical orientation was to model planned behavior related to hand hygiene practices in the workplace. The theoretical orientation shaped the methodology as hand hygiene practices were constructed as predicted planned behavior. The study was motivated by the possibility of predicting planned hygiene practices. Appropriateness of the model was tested using structural equation modeling.
Using the Litmus test as guide, it is possible to note that the reviewed article states that there is a problem in reducing employee absenteeism caused by infectious disease. This study that investigates planned behavior in the workplace by descriptive statistical method of structural equation modeling could remedy the situation in similar workplace settings. The researchers give evidence that the problem is significant, for contaminated hands in all age groups are transmitters of gastrointestinal infections. They articulate the problem within the context of planned behavior theoretical framework grounded in the WHO and CDC strategic recommendations to develop effective interventions capable of reducing gastrointestinal infections related to hand hygiene. They reflect on a meaningful gap in practice utilizing the theory of planned behavior that can effectively address the planned workplace hand hygiene intervention. The purpose and design of the study called for a quantitative analysis. The researchers used their own pilot study of the bank employees whose little sample size prevented them from generalizability.
To evaluate how a research study can be grounded in the literature, Babbie (2017) advances a plan for considering theoretical orientation, research design, measurement, sampling, experiments, survey or field research, content analysis, and others. For example, the researcher who evaluates theoretical orientation needs to determine a theoretical aspect to the study with corresponding references, the author’s theoretical orientation, what is tested (hypothesis or theory), how the theoretical orientation shapes the method, and how the selected method is appropriate. The typical mistake is to consider one’s work unique without viewing it as a reflection on an existing gap (Brown, 2013, Walden University Writing Center, 2014).
The study was motivated by the possibility of predicting planned hygiene practices. First, their area of interest was justified by high costs of absenteeism and resulted lost productivity in a workplace across the United States. Second, they focused on the relationship between hand hygiene and gastrointestinal infections. Third, they tested the theory of planned behavior a the one to help developing hand hygiene beliefs and activities. The researchers hypothesized that construct validity could be generalized estimating how beliefs would predict hand hygiene beliefs and their influences on developing hand hygiene infections during a month. This study filled the gap in doing research on community hand hygiene improvement interventions among office workers and, specifically, in University settings. The researchers contributed to the study of planned behavior by finding no gender difference in hand hygiene practices. From their findings, parents have better hand hygiene practices than others. The gap between the age, degree, and hand hygiene motivation remains a gap that needs further research. The weaknesses of this study include reliance solely on self-reported information.
Babbie, E. (2017). Basics of social research (7th ed.). Boston, MA: Cengage Learning.
Brown, M. (2013). Developing social problems into research problems for graduate study [Online webcast]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=udfldYXvUxwfeature=youtu.be
Stedman-Smith, M., DuBois, C. L., Grey, S. F. (2015). Hand hygiene performance and beliefs among public university employees. Journal of Health Psychology, 20(10), 1263–1274. doi: 10.1177/1359105313510338
Walden University Writing Center. (2014). WriteCast episode #5: Five strategies for critical reading. Retrieved from http://waldenwritingcenter.blogspot.com/2014/01/the-podcast-returns-writecast-episode-5.html
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