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Key Terms: Theory

Concept A concept is an image or symbolic representation of an abstract idea; the key identified element of a phenomenon that is necessary to understand it
Conceptual Definition The conceptual definition defines or explains the concept as it is rooted in theoretical literature.
Conceptual/Theoretical Framework A conceptual and/or theoretical framework is a set of interrelated concepts that represents an image of a phenomenon. These two terms are often used interchangeably.
Construct A construct is a complex concept. Constructs usually comprise more than one concept and are built or “constructed” to fit a purpose.
Model A model is a graphic or symbolic representation of a phenomenon. A graphic model is empirical and can be readily represented.
Operational Definition An operational definition specifies how the concept will be measured.
Theory Theory, specifically nursing theory, is a structured set of ideas that project a tentative, systematic, and purposeful view of observed phenomenon.
Created by: Dr.D