The concept refers to terms that define phenomena occurring either in thought or nature (McEwen and Willis, 2006). Concepts normally contain some attributes which help to distinguish them. Since the formulation of concepts employs the use of words, concepts can be broadly be categorized as either concrete or abstract. The former can be perceived by the common senses and include concepts such as universe, passion, ground, which are symbolic and a representation of phenomena. On the other hand, abstract concepts include love, anger, passion etc. All these terms are particular to an entity and for that matter descriptive in nature.
Concepts can be formulated using a single word, two words or a phrase (McEwen and Willis, 2006). Examples of single word concepts include death, fear, anxiety etc. The concepts with two words can take the form of mutual agreement, self-fulfillment etc. There are concepts which take the form of a phrase such as user-friendly services, environmental conscious behavior, poor service delivery etc. There are many concepts in different disciplines which help to differentiate one from the other. For the reasoned purpose of the systematic study of nature, it is important to come up with concepts that are clear (Duncan, Cloutier and Bailey, 2007).
This becomes a stepping stone that gives researchers and scholars a grasp of reality. It also makes the study of phenomena easier. Also in order to communicate meaning clearly to readers, there is a need for scholars to avoid ambiguity. This means that every time a term is used in a particular context, scholars must endeavor to define it to ensure proper interpretation. On the other hand, metaparadigms define a discipline and set the boundaries with other disciplines.
It gives the discipline a global perspective which is useful for the practitioners of the discipline to observe phenomena within their parameter (Van Wyk, 2005). In most cases, it comprises a range of major concepts which act as its defining elements. These concepts within a metaparadigm act as limitations or boundaries of the discipline. Again, metaparadigm not only defines a discipline but also outlines its concerns.
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