Reply to student post
Theories try to help us explain and understand things. A theory is a set of ideas and a hypothesis
(Stewart, Harte & Sambrook, 2010), which obviously means that theories are not facts. For instance,
people may have different understandings and impressions about the theory of evolution but we
cannot say for sure that it is a fact. Darwin�s idea is a theory which attempts to explain how
organisms progressed and took the shape of human beings and other animals. But unless theories
are proved wrong, some may consider them as true.
Reply to student post
In this post, the student has rightly pointed out that theories are of major importance
as they help in explaining and understanding various concepts. Generally, a theory attempts
to answer the question, why? Theories are usually devised for the purpose of explaining,
predicting, and understanding phenomena (Lynham 2013). In addition, theories are also
formulated for the purpose of challenging or extending existing knowledge within the limits
of bounding suppositions (Weick 2014).
The student intends to utilize the Inference to the Best Explanation (IBE) concept in
investigating cultural implications of adopting a 360° performance assessment system in the
Afghan city of Kabul. According to the student, the IBE concept would be used since it views
the research problem in the perspective that every kind of explanation is a probable outcome.
Furthermore, the IBE concept is essentially a sort of abductive reasoning in which a person
reasons from the basis of a state of affairs. It holds that Y gives the best explanation for Z. As
such, it is likely that Y is factual (Koslowski 2012).
The student recommends the use of the integrated 360° performance appraisal model
as the theoretical framework. The student wishes to use this method of evaluation as it is
objective as well as a fair appraisal method. This is very correct considering that the 360°
performance appraisal technique collects feedback on a worker from various sources. It gives
every worker a chance of receiving performance feedback from the employee’s supervisor,
workmates, clients, other company employees, and peers. In essence, it is a tool for
performance appraisal which includes feedback from everyone who observes the employee
and everyone affected by the employee’s performance (Espinilla et al. 2013). Therefore, the
student picked a relevant theoretical framework for the proposed study.
Espinilla, M, de Andrés, R, Martínez, F, & Martínez, L 2013, ‘A 360-degree performance
appraisal model dealing with heterogeneous information and dependent criteria’,
Information Sciences, 222, pp. 459-471, Business Source Complete, EBSCOhost,
viewed 6 June 2016.
Koslowski, B, 2012, Inference to the Best Explanation (IBE) and the Causal and Scientific
Reasoning of Nonscientists. Albany, NY: Penguin Publishers.
Lynham, SA 2013, The General Method of Theory-Building Research in Applied
Disciplines. Advances in Developing Human Resources, 4(87): 221-241;
Weick, KE 2014, The Work of Theorizing. In Theorizing in Social Science: The Context of
Discovery. Richard Swedberg, editor. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press.