Strengths And Weaknesses Of Mixed Methods

The evaluation of the philosophical debate in the area of the mixed-methods approach does not only consider the data collection process, but rather covers the whole research process, beginning with the very conceptualization of the subject to be studied. This paper therefore describes what mixed-methods entails and the philosophical issues that must be dealt with as a researcher makes the decision to use this approach, as opposed to using either a quantitative or a qualitative approach.
As Leech and Onwuegbusie (2009) explain, mixed methods involves carrying out the whole research project, including collecting, analyzing, and interpreting quantitative and qualitative data in the same study (p. 265). However these authors contend that the
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16). By taking a pragmatic approach to research and adopting the mixed methods approach, researchers would find that they are able to identify the strengths and weaknesses of both qualitative and quantitative research, and can therefore eliminate the weaknesses and use the strengths that both have to offer.
Besides, mixed methods are also based on pragmatism. In the debate between the purists of the qualitative and quantitative, there are yet two other schools of thought. In the first school of thought, the situationalists “contend that certain methods can be used in specific situations,” but in the second school of thought, the pragmatists, who oppose the purists and who argue “against a false dichotomy between the qualitative and quantitative research paradigms”, advocate for the efficient use of both approaches” (Cameron, 2011, p.
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While the question may be asked as to whether a mixed methods research is possible in light of the two different paradigms, a researcher could resolve the issue through praxis, which Cameron sees as an important part of the mixed methods research. This debate over the ability to carry out such research process can be resolved by praxis, which Cameron describes as the mixed methods researcher becoming “knowledgeable, informed and familiar with the growing body of literature that forms mixed methods as a third methodological movement” (p. 102). Besides, not only must the researcher understand the discipline, but must also be familiar with the methodological and data integration in mixed methods research (Cameron, 2011, p. 102). In other words, debate over the practicality of mixed methods research can be addressed with the researcher recognizing the choices that are available to using mixed methods, and this is possible when mixed methods researchers become knowledgeable in both qualitative and quantitative research methods (Cameron, 2011, p. 104). The pragmatist approach in the research design and implementation phases allows for asking which techniques and procedures are best for the research problem. Knowing the principles underlying the different methods used in both qualitative and quantitative research

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