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Chalquist.com Mixed Research Designs General rule: use methods whose strengths overlap and whose weaknesses cancel out. Example: phenomenological studies have low generalizability. So do one-shot case studies (a quantitative method). Pair phenomenological research with a method of higher generalizability (e.g., a well-authenticated questionnaire). Advantages of a Mixed Research Design: Tells the story behind the numbers. Triangulation of sources. Comes at the topic from more than one point of view. Can deal with a wider range of variables, questions, and hypotheses. The weaknesses of one method can be compensated by strengths of another. In general, makes it easier to connect theory with practice. Potential Disadvantages: More resources needed. More expertise needed. More time spent on analysis. Requires research participants who don’t mind multiple interventions. Expense. Sometimes harder to interpret and combine the results of the data. Types: Mixed Model and Mixed Method: Mixed Model: methods are mixed throughout the study. - Within-stage design: combining simultaneously (e.g., survey plus interviews). - Across- (or between-)stage design: methods vary across two or more steps (e.g., do an interview, then do a quantitative analysis of it). Mixed Method: quantitative and qualitative approaches are phased: each done separately with results combined at the end. Can be done concurrently or one after the other, and with equal emphasis or with one more emphasized. A useful resource: Creswell, J. 2003. Research Design: Qualitative, Quantitative, and Mixed Methods Approaches. Thousand Oaks: Sage.
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