EMPIRICAL / ANALYTICAL PARADIGM Also called: Objective - Quantitative - Deductive - Normative - Positivist-Authoritarian This worldview believes that you can explain-predict-control. Scientists see the world from this perspective


1. Cause and effect is real and can explain the world 2. Research is context-free 3. Believes in detached role of observer 4. Uses statistical analysis 5. Generalizes from the specific

6. Reality exists and can be predicted

7. Investigation is neutral

8.Theory and Practice are separate

9. Subject / Object relationship

10. Aristotle, Locke, Hume


INTERPRETIVE / SYMBOLIC PARADIGM Also called: Qualitative - Subjective - Inductive - Existentialist - Non-Authoritarian   This worldview is idiomatic and believes in nonstatistical interpretations of events. It values individual or specific observations and seeks to understand rather than to generalize into absolute truth.  


  1. Attempts to understand   2. Believes the world is contextual  

3. Observer-participant

  4. Holistic inquiry   5. Reports out with narrative description  

6. Believes realities are multiple social phenomena

7.  Believes investigation is context laden  

8. Believes theory and practice are interactive and specific

9. Subject / Subject relationship  

10. Anthropological approach- ethnography



CRITICAL PARADIGM This world view attempts to reveal the tacit values that underlie the enterprise or hidden agenda.  


1. Looking for underlying assumptions

2. Looking for internal contradictions and politics   3. Advocates social action   4. Believe society is controlled by power  

5. Believes reality is contextual

6. Believes self-reflection is the beginning