A type of educational research in which the research decides what to study; asks specific, narrow questions, collects quantifiable data from participants (a large number of participants); analyzes these numbers using statistics; and conducts the inquiry in an unbiased, objective manner. Positivism's - singular reality; objective; deductive Generally attempts to quantify variables of interest; questions must be measurable. Example: What Is the relationship between graduate students' level of Interaction, measured by the number of 'hits' In the course, and students' grades In an online research ethos course?Quantitative Methodology Generally involves collecting numerical data that can be subjected to statistical analysis Examples of data collection methodologies Performance Tests Personality Measures Questionnaires (with closed-ended questions or opened but transferred to quant data) Content Analysis The data Is generally referred to as "hard" data A type of educational research in which the researcher relies on the views of participants; asks broad, general questions; collects data consisting largely of words (or text) from participants; describes and analyzes these words for themes; and inducts the inquiry in a subjective, biased manner.Constructivism - multiple realities; biased; inductive "There are times we wish to know not how many or how well, but simply how' (Sultan, 1988, p. 7). "What are the factors that influence a graduate students' experience in an online research methods course? " Qualitative Methodology Generally involves listening to the participants' voice and subjecting the data to analytic induction (e.

G. Finding common themes) "More Exploratory in nature Examples of data collection methods Interviews Open-ended questionnaires Observations Content analysis Focus Groups When to use mixed method design? When both quantitative and qualitative data, together, provide a better understanding of your research problem than either type by itself. When one type of research (qualitative or quantitative) is not enough to address the research problem or answer the research questions.Pragmatism - practicality; multiple view points; biased and unbiased; subjective and objective To incorporate a qualitative component into an otherwise quantitative study To build from one phase of a study to another Explore qualitatively then develop an instrument Follow-up a quantitative study qualitatively to obtain more detailed information Mixed method research methodology Utilizes both quantitative and qualitative data collection methodologies.Examples Interviews and Questionnaires Performance Tests and Observation Questionnaires and follow up Focus groups Document analysis, Performance Tests, Questionnaire, and Interviews Characteristics of mixed method designs quantitative and qualitative forms of data priority sequence data analysis matched to a design diagram of the procedures Characteristics of mixed method designs: (rationale for the design) Readers and hose who review mixed methods studies need to know why you are mixing methods.

Mixed methods researchers include a Justification or rationale for their use of both quantitative and qualitative data.One Justification is that collecting quantitative data in a second phase is important to test the qualitative explorations of the first phase of the study (I. E. , exploratory design). Alternatively, a reason for conducting a mixed methods study might be that you seek to explain in more detail through qualitative research the initial quantitative statistical results (I. E.

, explanatory design). Another Justification results from combining the "best" of both quantitative and qualitative research (I. E. , triangulation design).

Characteristics of mixed method designs: (quant'. And equal. Forms of data) In any mixed methods study, you should clearly indicate that you are collecting both quantitative and qualitative data. Methods of data collection are typically associated with either numbers or numeric data and words or text and image data.

Mixed methods researchers collect both quantitative and qualitative data. Characteristics of mixed method designs: (priority) Mixed methods researchers advance the weight or priority to the collection of quantitative and qualitative data.Three options are available to the researcher for proportioning data: Quantitative and qualitative data are of equal weight. Quantitative data is of greater weight than qualitative data Qualitative data is of greater weight than quantitative data Weight or priority means that the researcher in a mixed methods design places more emphasis on one type of data than other types of data in the research and the written report.

This emphasis may result from personal experience with data election, the need to understand one form of data before proceeding to the next, or the audience reading the research.Whatever the reason, in examining a mixed methods study for the priority, ask the following questions: What do you emphasize more in the purpose statement-?exploration or prediction of outcomes? Which data collection process-?quantitative or qualitative-?do you give report). Which data collection process do you examine in the most depth (e. G.

, detailed statistical analysis or multiple layered thematic analyses)? Characteristics of mixed method designs: (sequence) Mixed methods researchers advance the sequence of data collection using concurrent or sequential approaches.Again, several options exist for the sequencing of data collection: You collect both quantitative and qualitative data at the same time. You collect quantitative data first, followed by qualitative data. You collect qualitative data first, followed by quantitative data. Characteristics of mixed method designs: (data analysis matched to design) One of the most difficult challenges for the mixed methods researcher is how to analyze data collected from qualitative and quantitative research.This is more than simply being able to link or intersect data and numbers, although this connection does present some challenges.

Several authors have begun the discussion about data analysis in mixed methods research (Caramel & Greene, 1993; Dashiki & Diddle, 1998). Characteristics of mixed method designs: (data analysis matched to design) cont'd Characteristics of mixed method designs: (data analysis matched to design) cont'd Characteristics of mixed method designs: (diagram of the procedure) Mixed methods researchers often provide a visualization or diagram of their design depicting the procedures.It consists of labeling the quantitative and qualitative data, indicating the sequence of activities (using arrows or plus signs), and emphasizing the priority (using lowercase or uppercase letters). By including this visualization, the researcher helps readers identify the sequence of data collection, an important aid when collecting multiple forms of data.Types of mixed method design Types of mixed method design: Triangulation Design Philosophical assumptions: one data collection form supplies strengths to offset the weaknesses of the other form The researcher: gathers both quantitative and qualitative data, amperes results from the analysis of both data makes an interpretation as to whether the results from both data support or contradict each other. The mixed methods researcher gives equal priority to both quantitative and qualitative data and sees them as approximately equal sources of information in the study.

For example, interview data is as important as the scores gathered on an instrument. The mixed methods researcher collects both the quantitative and qualitative data simultaneously during the study. Documents about what the students learn in preschool are reviewed, for example, at the same time that the searcher collects observations on student behavior using a checklist. The mixed methods researcher compares the results from quantitative and qualitative analyses to determine if the two databases yield similar or dissimilar results.For instance, qualitative themes identified during interviews are "quantified" and given a score as to their frequency.

Types of mixed method design: Purpose for Triangulation design The purpose of a triangulation mixed methods design is to simultaneously collect both quantitative and qualitative data, merge the data, and use the results to understand a research problem. Types of mixed method design: Strength it combines the advantages of each form of data that is, quantitative data provides for generalization, whereas qualitative data offers information about the context or setting.This design enables a researcher to gather information that uses the best features of both quantitative and qualitative data collection Types of mixed method design: Weakness this design is the need to translate one form of data into the other form to integrate and compare databases. Moreover, even if integration is possible, inconsistent exults may emerge, making it necessary to collect additional data to reconcile the differences.Types of mixed method design: Explanatory Design Begin from constructivism for the qualitative phase Shift to positivism's for the quantitative phase Common variants: Theory-development variant Instrument-development variant Starts by collecting and analyzing quantitative data Collects and analyzes qualitative data in a second phase as a follow-up to the quantitative results Connects the phases by using the quantitative results to shape the qualitative research questions, sampling, and data collectionPurpose for explanatory design To use qualitative data to help explain quantitative results that need further exploration To use quantitative results to purposefully select best participants for Appealing to quantitative researchers Straightforward to implement two phases Final report can be written in two phases Lends itself to emergent approaches Two phases require lengthy time to implement Difficult to secure RIB approval when second phase cannot be specified before first phase complete Need to decide what results to follow up Must decide criteria for selecting participantsNeed to contact participants for a second round of data collection Exploratory Design Purpose for exploratory design To first explore because variables, theories, hypotheses not known To develop an instrument or typology that is not available To assess whether qualitative themes generalize to a population Types of mixed method design: Straightforward to design, implement, and report Quantitative component can make the qualitative approach more acceptable to quantitative-biased audiences Researcher produces a product, such as an instrument Difficult to specify quantitative procedures when applying for initial RIB approval; ay have to apply twice Deciding the qualitative findings to use for quantitative phase Procedures for developing a valid and reliable instrument Steps in conducting a mixed method design Step 1.

Determine If a Mixed Methods Study Is Feasible The first step in the process is to assess the feasibility of using this design.You need skills in gathering both quantitative and qualitative data, time to collect extensive information, and a working knowledge of the different types of designs. Also important is whether audiences such as graduate committees, publishers, other searchers, and practitioners in educational settings will appreciate the complexity of your mixed method study. Step 2.

Identify a Rationale for Mixing Methods Assuming that a study is feasible, you need to consider why you are collecting both quantitative and qualitative data. The rationale for the three designs should provide a good starting point. Be explicit in this rationale, and include it early in your research plan or report. Steps in conducting a mixed method design cont'd Step-3.Identify a Data Collection Strategy Identifying your rationale for the study will lead to planning your procedures for electing data. You need to know: the priority you will give to quantitative and qualitative data the sequence of your data collection, if you do not plan to collect the data concurrently I the specific forms of quantitative data (e.

G. , attendance records) and qualitative data (e. G. , pictures) you will collect.

Once you have made these decisions, create a visual diagram of the procedures. Steps in conducting a mixed method design cont'd Step 4. Develop Both Quantitative and Qualitative Questions With the specific design in mind, next develop your research questions.Depending n the type of design, you can identify these questions prior to a study or they may emerge during the study. For instance, in a two-phase design, the questions for your second phase cannot be specifically identified early in the study-?they will emerge as the study progresses.

Alternatively, for a triangulation design, you can present the questions before data collection and specify them in detail. If you can identify both quantitative and qualitative questions, pose both sets of questions. Typically, researchers present both exploratory questions and analytic-variable questions in a axed methods study. Steps in conducting a mixed method design cont'd Step 5.Collect Quantitative and Qualitative Data Collecting data in a mixed methods study follows the procedures for data collection identified in Chapters 6 and 8. For a mixed methods study, the sequence in which you collect the data will depend on the type of design.

However, in all designs, this phase of the research will be lengthy and require good record keeping of the information. Step 6. Analyze Data Separately or Concurrently The data analysis will also relate to the specific type of mixed methods design you are using. You can analyze quantitative data separately from analysis of qualitative data, as in the explanatory and exploratory designs, or integrate the data analysis, as in the triangulation design.

Steps in conducting a mixed method design cont'd Step 7. Write the Report as a One- or Two-phase Study The final step in a mixed methods study is to write a scholarly report of the project. Some variations are seen in the writing structure of mixed methods studies, as to specify the problem and the literature. Then, the sections of data collection, analysis, and interpretation, two phases one quantitative and one qualitative-?are seed for each section.

I The report integrates the quantitative and qualitative phases of the study in each section. The problem statement, for example, contains a need to explore (qualitative) and to predict or explain outcomes (quantitative).The research questions are posed as both quantitative and qualitative questions, and the data collection is in one section displaying an integration of quantitative and qualitative forms. The data analysis is an attempt to converge the two databases, and you form the results and interpretation into information that sheds light on the research problem.

This structure results in a triangulation design. Criteria for evaluating a Mixed method Study Does the study employ at least one method associated with quantitative research and one method associated with qualitative research? Is it called a mixed methods (or a similar term) study? Is there a rationale for why the author intends to mix methods in a single study and what you will gain in this process? Does the author indicate the type of mixed methods study?Alternatively, can you identify the type from reading the rationale or from a visual fugue depicting the flow of data collection activities? Does the author mention the priority given to the quantitative and qualitative data and the sequence of their use in the study? Is the study feasible, given the amount of data to be collected and the monies, time, and expertise required? Has the author written research questions for both the quantitative and the qualitative methods in the study? Has the author clearly identified the quantitative and qualitative data collection procedures? Is the procedure for data analysis consistent with the type of mixed methods study? Is the written structure of the study consistent with the type of mixed methods design?