CODS - Journal of Dentistry

Register      Login

VOLUME 12 , ISSUE 1 ( January-June, 2020 ) > List of Articles


Mixed-method Research: A Basic Understanding

Disha Nagpal, Ida Kornerup, Monica P Gibson

Citation Information : Nagpal D, Kornerup I, Gibson MP. Mixed-method Research: A Basic Understanding. CODS J Dent 2020; 12 (1):11-16.

DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10063-0065

License: CC BY-NC 4.0

Published Online: 05-04-2021

Copyright Statement:  Copyright © 2020; The Author(s).


Aim and objective: Describe the basics of the mixed-method type of research. Background: Traditionally, the research has been quantitative in nature which provided measures for the parameter of interest. This was followed by the era of qualitative research which helped in a detailed understanding of a phenomenon. This is especially important in healthcare research as it also gives an account of the individual interaction with their environment which is a significant contributor to health. Around the 1970s, the concept of combining both these approaches was used in social sciences. Recently, this mixed-method approach was integrated into health research and educators. However, there has been a continuing debate on the basic nature of this research design. Thus, a complete understanding of this type of research is important. Review results: Various authors described various purposes of the mixed-method approach. The main ones being triangulation, complementarity, development, initiation, and expansion. Theoretical drives, timings, and point of integration are the three factors that need to be considered for the development of studies using this design. Throughout times, different classifications for mixed-method studies have evolved, however, the most accepted one, based on the utility and internal consistency is the classification by Creswell and Clarke. They describe four major designs for mixed-method research as triangulation design, embedded design, explanatory design, and exploratory design. The application, principle, variants, strengths, challenges, and examples of each have been described extensively in this article. Conclusion and clinical significance: Mixed-method approach is a valuable research type as it capitalizes on the strength of both qualitative and quantitative research. It is of significance in health research as it gives a broader range of perspectives to the complex phenomena studied. Thus, proper knowledge of the basics is required to accurately combine and interpret findings of the qualitative and quantitative aspects. This article is a contribution to this basic understanding of mixed-method research.

  1. Onwuegbuzie L. A typology of mixed methods research designs. Quality & Quantity 2009;43(2):265–275. DOI: 10.1007/s11135-007-9105-3.
  2. Creswell JW, Garett AL. The “movement” of mixed methods research and the role of educators. South Afr J Educat 2008;28(3):321–333. DOI: 10.15700/saje.v28n3a176.
  3. Denzin NK, Lincoln YS. Introduction: The discipline and practice of qualitative research. In: Denzin NK, Lincoln YS, ed., The Sage handbook of qualitative research, Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications; 2005. pp. 1–32.
  4. Jick TD. Mixing qualitative and quantitative methods: triangulation in action. Adm Sci Quarterly 1979;24(4):602–611. DOI: 10.2307/2392366.
  5. Ostlund U, Kidd L, Wengstrom Y, et al. Combining qualitative and quantitative research within mixed method research designs: a methodological review. Int J of Nursing Studies 2011;48(3):369–383. DOI: 10.1016/j.ijnurstu.2010.10.005.
  6. Johnson BR, Onwuegbuzie AJ, Turner LA. Toward a definition of mixed methods research. J Mixed Methods Res 2007;1(2):112–133. DOI: 10.1177/1558689806298224.
  7. Tashakkori A, Creswell JW. Editorial. The new era of mixed methods. J Mixed Methods Res 2007;1(1):3–7. DOI: 10.1177/2345678906293042.
  8. Schoonenboom J, Johnson RB. How to construct a mixed methods research design. Köln Z Soziol 2017;69(Suppl 2):107–131. DOI: 10.1007/s11577-017-0454-1.
  9. Morse JM. Principles of mixed methods and multi-method research design. In: Teddlie C, Tashakkori A, ed. Handbook of mixed methods in social and behavioral research. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publication; 2003. pp. 189–208.
  10. Greene JC, Hall JN. Dialectics and pragmatism. In: Tashakkori A, Teddlie C, ed. Handbook of mixed methods in social & behavioral research. 2nd ed., Los Angeles: Sage; 2010. pp. 119–167.
  11. Bryman A. Integrating quantitative and qualitative research: How is it done? Qualitative Research 2006;6(1):97–113.
  12. Greene JC, Caracelli VJ, Graham WF. Toward a conceptual framework for mixed-method evaluation designs. Educational evaluation and policy analysis. Fall 1989;11(3):255–274.
  13. Schoonenboom J. The multilevel mixed intact group analysis: a mixed method to seek, detect, describe, and explain differences between intact groups. J Mixed Methods Res 2016;10(2):129–146. DOI: 10.1177/1558689814536283.
  14. Morse JM. Approaches to qualitative-quantitative methodological triangulation. Nurs Res 1991;40(2):120–123. DOI: 10.1097/00006199-199103000-00014.
  15. Guest G. Describing mixed methods research: an alternative to typologies. J Mixed Methods Research 2013;7(2):141–151. DOI: 10.1177/1558689812461179.
  16. Morse JM, Niehaus L. Mixed method design: principles and procedures. Walnut Creek, CA, USA: Left Coast Press Inc.; 2009.
  17. Teddlie CB, Tashakkori A. Foundations of mixed methods research: Integrating quantitative and qualitative approaches in the social and behavioral sciences. 1st ed., Los Angeles: Sage Publications Inc; 2009.
  18. Creswell JW, PIano, Clark VL. Designing and conducting mixed methods research. 2nd ed., Los Angeles: Sage Publications Inc; 2011. p. 89.
  19. Teddlie C, Tashakkori A. Major issues and controversies in the use of mixed methods in the social and behavioral sciences. In: Tashakkori A, Teddlie C, ed. Handbook of mixed methods in social and behavioral research. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications; 2003. pp. 3–50.
  20. Patton MQ. Qualitative evaluation and research methods. 2nd ed., Newbury Park CA: Sage Publications Inc; 1990.
  21. Creswell JW, Piano Clark VL, Gutmann ML, et al. Advanced mixed methods research designs. In: Tashakkori A, Teddlie C, ed. Handbook on mixed methods in the behavioral and social sciences. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications Inc; 2003. pp. 209–240.
  22. Caracelli VJ, Greene JC. Crafting mixed-method evaluation designs. New Direct Evaluat 1997;74(74):19–32. DOI: 10.1002/ev.1069.
  23. Dyer TA, Robinson PG. General health promotion in general dental practice — the involvement of the dental team part 2: a qualitative and quantitative investigation of the views of practice principals in South Yorkshire. Br Dent J 2006;201(1):45–51. DOI: 10.1038/sj.bdj.4813774.
  24. Morgan DL. Practical Strategies for combining qualitative and quantitative methods: applications tO health research. Qual Health Res 1998;8(3):362–376. DOI: 10.1177/104973239800800307.
PDF Share
PDF Share

© Jaypee Brothers Medical Publishers (P) LTD.