hypothesis is directly related to a theory but
contains operationally defined variables and is in
Hypotheses allow us to determine, through
research, if our theory is correct.
In other words, does prior work experience
result in better grades?
When doing research, we are typically looking
for some type of difference or change between two or
more groups. In
our study, we are testing the difference between
having work experience and not having work
experience on college grades.
Every study has two hypotheses; one stated as
a difference between groups and one stated as no
difference between groups.
stated as a difference between groups, our
hypothesis would be, students with prior work
experience earn higher grades than students without
prior work experience.
This is called our research or scientific
most statistics test for no difference, however, we
must also have a null hypothesis.
The null hypothesis is always written with
the assumption that the groups do not differ.
In this study, our null hypothesis would
state that, students with work experience will
not receive different grades than students with no
null hypothesis is what we test through the use of
statistics and is abbreviated H0.
Since we are testing the null, we can assume
then that if the null is not true then some
alternative to the null must be true.
The research hypothesis stated earlier
becomes our alternative, abbreviated H1.
In order to make research as specific as
possible we typically look for one of two outcomes,
either the null or the alternative hypothesis.
To conclude that there is no difference
between the two groups means we are accepting our
If we, however, show that the null is not
true then we must reject it and therefore conclude
that the alternative hypothesis must be true.
While there may be a lot of gray area in the
research itself, the results must always be stated
in black and white.
More on hypothesis testing will be discussed
in chapter 9.