Mixed Methods   

This course helped me to see research methods from a different perspective and enriched my knowledege and research skills. It exceeded my expectations. — participant from Pakistan

This course deals with when, how, and why to mix qualitative and quantitative methods within one research design. The first part of the course covers research design issues, theoretical assumptions, and justifications for mixed methods. The second and third part deals with the qualitative and quantitative perspective in a mixed methods research design, respectively. The fourth part explores practical problems and solutions to mixed methods research.

To fully benefit from this course, participants should have received some prior qualitative and/or quantitative methods training.


Dates

This course was offered in 2014, 2015, and 2016.


Instructor

M. Max Bergman (picture), University of Basel


Detailed Description

This course deals with when, how, and why to mix qualitative and quantitative methods within one research design. It consists of four parts. In the first part, definitions and characterizations of qualitative and quantitative research methods are explored. Here, we discuss the limitations and opportunities of these approaches with regard to combining qualitative and quantitative techniques in a mixed methods framework. We also examine various research designs and the different possibilities of integrating qualitative and quantitative techniques. We then look at the justifications for mixed methods research and explore their implications and potential problems.

The second and third part are divided into qualitative and quantitative aspects of mixed methods design, respectively. Research projects from the instructor and participants are used as case studies to discuss different approaches to mixed methods research. We discuss theoretical implications, the research question, characteristics of data collection, data analysis, and design issues with a special focus on the integration of qualitative and quantitative techniques. Participants are encouraged to engage with these concepts and to complete practical exercises, which give them the opportunity to explore different techniques of data collection and data analysis, and their integration within a mixed methods framework. Other central themes include sampling issues, the research process, project management, and project planning.

The fourth part explores practical problems and solutions to mixed methods research with a special focus on issues raised connected to the participants' research projects. Finally, future directions and new opportunities of mixed methods research are discussed.

The participants are invited to work on their own data during the course, and they have the opportunity to present their research in one-to-one tutorials with the instructor.

After attending this course, participants will understand the principles of mixed methods research, be able to identify the possibilities and limitations of mixed methods research, and be in a position to apply the mixed methods designs appropriate for their specific purposes.


Prerequisites

While there are no formal prerequisites for this course, participants can only learn how to successful mix methods if they have at least a basic background in qualitative and/or quantitative methods.


Requirements

Participants are expected to bring a WiFi-enabled laptop computer. Access to data, temporary licenses for the course software, and installation support will be provided by the Methods School.


Core Readings

Bergman, M. Max, ed. 2008. Advances in Mixed Methods Research: Theories and Applications. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.

Tashakkori, Abbas, and Charles B. Teddlie. 1998. Mixed Methodology: Combining Qualitative and Quantitative Approaches. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.

Creswell, John W., and Vicki L. Plano Clark. 2010. Designing and Conducting Mixed Methods Research. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.


Suggested Readings

Berg, Bruce L., and Howard Lune. 2011. Qualitative Research Methods for the Social Sciences. 8th edition. New York, NY: Pearson.

Plano Clark, Vicki L., and John W. Creswell, eds. 2008. The Mixed Methods Reader. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.

Ritchie, Jane, Jane Lewis, Carol McNaughton-Nicholls, and Rachel Ormstoneds, eds. 2013. Qualitative Research Practice: A Guide for Social Science Students and Researchers. 2nd edition. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.

Silverman, David, ed. 2010. Qualitative Research. 3rd edition. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.

Teddlie, Charles B., and Abbas Tashakkori. 2009. Foundations of Mixed Methods Research: Integrating Quantitative and Qualitative Approaches in the Social and Behavioral Sciences. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.


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