The yin-yang metaphor clearly describes the dualistic nature of the scientific methodology, as well as the planned trend towards harmonization and the acquisition of a uniform format. For decades, in a lot of studies, there have been methodological differences among adherents of quantitative and qualitative approaches. Nowadays, more and more often, one can hear about the mixing of well-known methods.
In order to implement types of mixed research methods, it is significant to perceive the possibilities and limitations of each mean. For instance, the key features of traditional quantitative investigation consist in deduction, concept validation, elaboration, standardized data accumulation and statistical analysis. The dominant properties of accepted qualitative investigation are inductive logic, continuous search, exploration, the promotion of theories, and the inseparability of evidence. The scholar acts as a priority tool, where own subjectivity serves as a basis for cognitive abilities.
The visions of the supporters of quantitative ways are equated with physical phenomena. According to this paradigm, scientists are neutral figures not involving in the research process. The scientific texts of the mentioned school use rhetorical neutrality, impersonal sentences, passive voice and technical terminology, on which the principal emphasis is placed on describing the laws that have been obtained.
Adherents of qualitative means offer an interpretative approach based on directions like constructivism, idealism, relativism, humanism, hermeneutics, and postmodernism. Such methodology proposes the assumption of a multitude of realities and the impossibility of an unambiguous differentiation between reasons and effects.
The significant point of the mixed construction serves the condition that a compounding of means will be the result of the strengths of available conception, i.e., answering the query of what is mixed methods research, experts mean a unique strategy when the academic combines details of qualitative and quantitative approaches for a comprehensive and in-depth analysis of a vast number of assignments.
Mixed Methods Research: Short Excursion
Consecutive contributions option allows building a chain of continuity between data. So, the results of one intention will serve as a fundament for the next one. As to experts, this is the most productive way concerning the given issue. Let’s turn to different versions by integrating qualitative and quantitative tools.
Sequential Explanatory Way: Nuances of Application
The indicated category is suitable for educational articles. The primary target group serves an audience that does not have special skills and competencies in a particular field. The analysis calls for special terminology, but in a simplified format, so its character is greatly clear for perception. Its task is to acquaint the ordinary readers with general events or situations. It minimizes the exploitation of scholar notions or statistics, and their reliability has an elaborate definition. For the sequential explanatory method, the next traits are typical:
- comparisons with routine phenomena;
- the narrative of particular phenomena without taxonomy;
- common review.
All the facts are presented with a huge number of simple exemplifies. An akin tool is applicable for usage of professional slang, severe ranking and gradual modify from the review to individual cases. The findings are printed in educational and methodical manuals. Thus, this way is used with an intelligence mission, when it is not clear how the research program should look like.
Sequential Exploratory Tool
The indicated notion does not propose quotes and is emotionally neutral in a sense. It requests an appropriate dispute of a definite term. In addition, a similar way is connected with the viewpoint of the profile terminology and personal explanations.
A sequential exploratory method can be presented in the form of contrasts, comparisons, examination of cause-effect links or as an accurate clarification of a precise definition. A storyline impacts on the phrasing of thematic points to alleviate the text cognition. Sometimes in such a document, we can find some tips for resolving the issue, i.e., the similar concept makes it possible to determine concrete ways for constructing tools and formulating questions.
Sequential Transformative Process
Transformation is carried out by bringing qualitative data to a quantitative format, for instance, topic binarization, or bringing quantitative figures to a different format by categorizing continuous variables. If only one type of information is used, then the sequential transformative procedure needs a habitual preparation for their further analysis.
Concurrent Triangulation: The Complexity
This sort is grounded on two main precepts. First, in a mixed-type examination, it is essential to define the status of the paradigms. Secondly, to answer the question of how will an investigation be carried out. An example of a project suitable for the framework of the mentioned group serves the case when in the first phase a qualitative study is conducted to construct a theory, and on the second one, a quantitative survey of a specific community, relative to which the developed concept is applicable. In concurrent triangulation design, the received outcomes are addressed to confirm the results obtained by other methods.
Concurrent Nested Structure
An akin operation identifies eight factors of the examination design, namely:
- The theme of the study;
- the priority issues and objectives;
- dominant strategies;
- theories, hypotheses, and models;
- sorts and forms of data;
- selection of origins;
- data accumulation and timing;
- processing and analysis.
The concurrent nested design is associated with situations where one of the tools is integrated into another. In this case, both groups of means have equivalent status.
Concurrent Transformative Procedure: Difficulties of Comprehending
Before proceeding to the integration, it is necessary to go through several additional steps. It is relevant when the main purpose is triangulation, and all the necessary information is collected for each observation separately. At the stage of consolidation, new variables are created, which allow recreating the full picture of the phenomenon being studied. Integration of data is aimed at forming a single array that opens the possibility of choosing one of the competing explanations of the problem at the interpretation stage.
If the final array does not allow making an unambiguous choice, a decision is made on the need to collect additional elements. The concurrent transformative design takes place when different methods are used together to fix, and the components are subsequently suitable to reconfigure a dialogue, the participants of which hold various ideological views.
Thus, among modern research practices, there is a trend towards the integration of qualitative and quantitative methods. Note that mixed studies suggest non-trivial combinations of methods of divergence groups in one investigation by verbal and visual facts.