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Hypothesis: An Introduction

Last updated date: 15th Mar 2023
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You must have heard about hypotheses that led to several achievements in scientific inventions. A hypothesis is a milestone in any research; it is the point of the research where we propose an analysis. The hypothesis of any research corresponds to the assumptions we conclude from the evidence gathered. The hypothesis consists of the points or the concepts that are proven successful. Now, let us learn about what exactly a hypothesis means and the type of hypothesis along with examples.

What is Hypothesis?

An assumption that is made based on some limited evidence collected is known as a hypothesis. It is the beginning point of study that translates research questions into predictions that might or might not be true. It depends on the variables and population used, also the relation between the variables. The hypothesis used to test the relationship between two or multiple variables is known as the research hypothesis.

Hypothesis Properties

The properties of the hypothesis are as follows:

  • It should be empirically tested irrespective of being right or wrong.

  • It should establish the relationship between the variables that are considered.

  • It must be specific, clear, and precise.

  • It should possess the scope for future studies and be capable of conducting more tests.

  • It should be capable of testing it in a reasonable time and it must be reliable.

Types of Hypothesis

Hypothesis can be classified as follows:

  • Null Hypothesis

  • Simple hypothesis

  • Directional hypothesis

  • Complex hypothesis

  • Non-directional hypothesis

  • Causal and associative hypothesis

Null Hypothesis

It states that one variable doesn't affect the other variables being studied. A null hypothesis asserts that two factors or groups are independent of each other and that some traits of a population or process are identical. To contradict or invalidate the null hypothesis, we must assess the likelihood of the alternative hypothesis in addition to the null hypothesis.

Simple Hypothesis

There are two types of variables i.e, dependent and independent variables. A simple hypothesis shows the relationship between the dependent and independent variables. For example, if you pump petrol into your bike, you can go for long rides. Here bike is the dependent variable and petrol is the independent one.

Directional Hypothesis

A directional hypothesis is a researcher's prediction of a positive or negative change, relationship, or difference between two variables in a population. This statement is often supported by prior research, a widely established theory, considerable experience, or relevant literature.

For example, students who do proper revision and assignments could score more marks than the students who skipped. Here, we already know the process and its impact on the outcome. This is what we call a directional hypothesis.

Complex Hypothesis

The complex hypothesis shows the relationship that comes between two or more dependent and independent variables. For example, if you pump petrol in your bike, you can go for long rides, also you become an expert in riding a bike, you explore more places and come across new things.

Non-directional Hypothesis

There is no theory for this kind. Unlike the directional hypothesis, there are no predictions. We can say there is a relation between the variables but prediction and nature are unknown.

Causal and Associative Hypothesis

If there is a change in one variable and as a result, it affects the other variable, then we say it is associative. Meanwhile, the causal hypothesis comes into play when the cause and effect interaction occurs between two or more variables.

Sources of Hypothesis

The major sources of hypothesis are:

  • Scientific theories

  • Personal experience and conclusion arrived

  • Studies that underwent in the past

  • The resemblances between the phenomena, that is the pattern observed in common

  • Common thoughts and thinking

Functions of Hypothesis

The functions of hypothesis are as follows:

  • It tells us the specific aspects of studies we investigate. It provides study with focus.

  • The cnstruction of the hypothesis led to objectivity in the investigation

  • It helps to formulate the theory for the research work and sort out what is wrong and right.

  • It filters out the data that have to be collected for the work.

Hypothesis Examples

Some examples of hypotheses are as follows

  • Consumption of tobacco led to cancer, which is an example of a simple hypothesis.

  • If a person does work out daily, his/her skin, body, and mind remain healthy and fresh, which is an example of a directional hypothesis.

  • If you consume tobacco it not only causes cancer, but also affects your brain, turns your lips black, etc.

Role of Hypothesis in the Scientific Method

  • Experimental designing

  • Predicting results

  • Background research

  • Question formation

  • Data collection

  • Verification of results

  • Concluding the experiment

  • Being a future reference for the further studies

  • Role of hypothesis in the scientific method


In conclusion, it can be understood that a hypothesis is an assumption that researchers make on the basis of the limited evidence collected. It is the starting point of study that translates research questions into predictions. The various types of hypotheses include Null Hypothesis, Simple hypothesis, Directional hypothesis, Complex hypothesis, Non-directional hypothesis, and Causal and associative hypothesis. We proceed with our research or experiments according to the hypothesis we design.

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FAQs on Hypothesis

1. Why is a hypothesis important?

Hypothesis plays an important role in any research project; it's a stepping stone to proving a theory. Hypothesis serves in establishing a connection to the underlying theory and particular research subject. It helps in data processing and evaluates the reliability and validity of the study. It offers a foundation or supporting evidence to demonstrate the accuracy of the study. A hypothesis allows researchers not only to get a relationship between variables, but also to predict a relationship based on theoretical guidelines and/or empirical proof.

2. How do I write a hypothesis?

Writing a good hypothesis starts before you even begin to type. Like several tasks, preparation is vital, thus you begin first by conducting analysis yourself, and reading all you can regarding the subject that you decide to do research on. From there, you’ll gain the information you need to know , where your focus within the subject will lie. Keep in mind that a hypothesis may be a prediction of the relationship that exists between 2 or more variables. The hypothesis should be straightforward and concise , the result should be predictable , clear and with no assumptions about the reader's knowledge.

3. What are a few examples of hypotheses?

Consumption of drugs leads to depression is an example of a simple hypothesis. If a person has a proper diet plan, his/her skin, body, and mind remain healthy and fresh. This is an example of a directional hypothesis. If you consume drugs it not only causes depression, but also affects your brain, leads to addiction, etc. If you pump petrol in your bike, you can go for long rides, also you become an expert in riding a bike, you explore more places and come across new things.