With origin in the Latin term hypothesis, which in turn derives from a Greek concept, a hypothesis it is something that is assumed and that is given a certain degree of possibility to extract an effect or a consequence from it. Its validity depends on submitting to several tests, starting from the theories elaborated.
For example: “My hypothesis is that if we launch the new product before the end of the year, we will be able to increase market share”, “The coach does not contemplate any other hypothesis than the victory of Romania in the next game”, “The police still have no hypothesis about the murder of the girl”.
In colloquial language, its indiscriminate use is very common, with a degree of inaccuracy comparable to that suffered by the word philosophy. Given the close relationship between hypothesis and research organized, its use to speak of vague opinions about sports, politics and economics, among other controversial topics, is incoherent. Also, this term is very often confused with theory, the first of the components of a hypothesis.
Development of a hypothesis
For him scientific method, a hypothesis is a interim solution and that has not yet been confirmed for a certain issue. According to the empirical information that can be obtained in the field work, the hypothesis may have a lower or higher degree of reliability. Next, we find the steps to follow for its construction and developing:
* Preparation of questions, which arise naturally from ignorance about the phenomenon natural that is being studied.
* Search for possible answers, provided they are based on procedures and theories that can be tested in the field of science. On the contrary, those that cannot be proven are considered speculations and they are ignored.
* Prediction of the results that will be obtained when putting into practice the elaborated answers.
* Experimentation and detailed recording of the findings, so that they can be reproduced as many times as necessary if they are collected terms.
* Analysis and processing of the results obtained. An attempt is made to find a relationship between the data that have been recorded throughout the performance of the various experiments. Furthermore, this information is contrasted with the prediction mentioned above. Generally, this analysis culminates in a mathematical expression to organize the hypothesis, the prediction, and the results.
* Finally, it is concluded whether the hypothesis is true or false, depending on the degree of accuracy of the prediction.
These steps lead to a new hypothesis, which will generate more predictions and experiments, understanding the research cycles that result in scientific advances.
Classification according to type
Association or covariation hypothesis: are those that establish a certain relationship between two or more of its variables, in such a way that by modifying one of them, we directly or indirectly alter the dependent variable. A simple example: if the value of Y depends on xlet’s say increase x can result in both an increase and a decrease in Y.
Production ratio hypothesis: the behavior or alteration of a variable modifies or influences the variable dependent. Example of influence: a news of illness produces anguish. Regarding behavior change: acquiring knowledge about possible treatments improves the patient’s habits, to obtain a faster cure.
Causal relationship hypothesis: explain and predict events and phenomena contemplating certain margins of error. This type of hypothesis occurs when the behavior or alteration of a variable is the effect of other, cause, which is not strange or random and which takes place before the first. A clear example is stating that reading improves spelling, since reading (the cause) occurs before the supposed improvement in writing (the effect), and the result is not always the same.