Mixed Methods Research Manuscript Critique
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Assignment 1: Mixed Methods Research Manuscript Critique
In this module we expanded our knowledge about mixed methodology.By the due date assigned, complete the following manuscript research critique for the Mixed Method research article you selected in Module 1. Provide feedback to at least two of your peers through the end of the module.
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Type of Study: Mixed Method
- Research Topic:
- Purpose of the Study:
- Theoretical Framework: (Identify the theoretical/conceptual framework)
- Specific Research Questions/ Philosophical Underpinnings:
- Mixed method design: (present the elements of quantitative and qualitative and describe how these compliment each other and why it was important or was not important, to conduct this research as a mixed methods design.)
- Procedure: (How was the data collected? What was the sampling strategy used?)
- Variables/Concepts: (Identify the Dependent and Independent Variables or confounds.)
- Instrument(s) analysis: (Discuss reliability, validity and generalizability of the measures included in the study and/or discuss methods for collecting data. Discuss how rigor is assured.)
- Data analysis: (Discuss the statistical software, if any, used in analysis of the data and the type of analyses included.)
Module 6 Overview (1 of 2)
Research Methods: Mixed Methods
In Module 6 we will review the mixed methods research design and also introduce one particular application: program evaluation. By now, you have developed a quantitative design (in Module 4) and qualitative design (in Module 5) using the same/similar constructs of interests as your research questions. You may have noticed your own strengths and areas of growth as a qualitative and a quantitative researcher. You may also have noticed that, depending on your research question(s), quantitative may fit better (or vice versa) in answering the question(s). It is very important to choose your methodology based on the type of problems you wish to examine in addition to your personal strengths and weaknesses. Below is a list of research problems and matching methods or designs (Creswell & Plano-Clark, 2007, p. 32):
- Need to see if a treatment is effective » experimental design
- Need to see what factors influence an outcome » correlation design
- Need to identify broad trends in a population » survey design
- Need to describe a culture-sharing group » ethnography design
- Need to generate a theory of a process » grounded theory design
- Need to tell the story of an individual » narrative design
What about mixed methods? What are the situations in which the mixed method is the preferred approach? Below are some examples (adapted from Creswell & Plano Clark, 2007):
- When a need exists for both quantitative and qualitative approaches. One may wish to collect both survey data and interview data to note trends and generalizations as well as in-depth knowledge and clarifications of subtleties of the participants’ perspectives.
- When a need exists to enhance the study with a second source of data. This is preferred when one design can be enhanced by the other design. For example, a problem may exist that results from an experimental or correlational design that is insufficient and the qualitative data from interviews can offer further insights into the problems of interests and thereby enhance the overall study.
- When a need exists to explain the quantitative results. Sometimes quantitative results are inadequate to provide explanations of outcomes, and the problem can be better understood by using qualitative data to explain the quantitative results in the words of the participants.
- When a need exists to first explore qualitatively. Sometimes qualitative research can provide an adequate exploration of a problem, it is not enough to fully understand the problem. For example, qualitative research is often used initially to identify variables, constructs, and theories to test, and help in the identification of items and scales to help develop a quantitative instrument.
Continue on to the next page for a discussion of program evaluation.Consent: (What type of consent, if any, was obtained from the participants?)
Module 6 Overview (2 of 2)
Research Methods: Mixed Methods
What is program evaluation and how is it similar to and different from research? You will learn much more about program evaluation in R7036 Program Evaluation research class. In this module, we will focus on the differences between research and program evaluation.
While researchers are typically most interested in enhancing the profession’s knowledge base, such as comparing the efficacy of two particular interventions or treatments, program evaluators are most interested in the effectiveness of a particular program for a particular group of people (Heppner, Kivlighan, & Wampold, 1999). Therefore, program evaluators ideally want to be involved at the very beginning when the program is being designed to learn about how the interventions/ treatments are chosen. After the program begins, the evaluators carefully monitor the data collection procedures to ensure the processes are executed correctly.
According to (Heppner, Kivlighan, & Wampold, 1999), there are several benefits for the evaluators to be involved in the program from the beginning to implementation. They will then be in the position to:
- Identify the problems with the data collection procedures to minimize the risk of losing valuable data.
- Collect data to evaluate program effectiveness.
- Formulate and test hypothesis that come up as the program matures.
- Document changes in the program’s implementation over time.
- Give possible explanations for unanticipated results.
- Document unanticipated positive outcomes.
Another difference between research and program evaluation is that, although program evaluation uses many of the data collection methods used in empirical research (whether qualitatively or quantitatively), the scope of a program evaluation is often much broader than that of empirical research. In addition, whereas empirical research often occurs in controlled settings, program evaluation typically occurs in natural settings and without a control group and outside of the program evaluation’s control. Further, program evaluators are not only interested in the outcome of the program, but also the process or the implementation of the program.
At the end of this module, you need to decide which design (qualitative, quantitative, or mixed) you will use for your final project and obtain approval from your instructor to proceed with your final paper. We hope that the peer-review process has given you further opportunity to give each other feedback on each others’ research questions and methodology. We also hope that you have gained a much better sense about which methodology has a better fit with your research question(s) and your own personal strengths and weaknesses.