SAGE Journal Articles

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Hesse-Biber, S. (2010). Qualitative approaches to mixed methods practice. Qualitative Inquiry 16(6), 455–468. DOI:10.1177/1077800410364611.

Abstract: This article discusses how methodological practices can shape and limit how mixed methods is practiced and makes visible the current methodological assumptions embedded in mixed methods practice that can shut down a range of social inquiry. The article argues that there is a “methodological orthodoxy” in how mixed methods is practiced that currently favors quantitative methodologies, with a mixed methods praxis that positions qualitative methods second and quantitative methods as primary with an overall mixed methods design that is in the service of testing out quantitatively generated theories about the social world. This article upends the current methodological focus on positivism by centering qualitative approaches to mixed methods practice. A qualitative approach seeks to empower individuals’ stories with the goal of understanding how they how make meaning within their social world. Through intensive case studies this article demonstrates the synergy of combining methods in the service of qualitatively driven approaches.

Mason, J. (2006). Mixing methods in a qualitatively driven way. Qualitative Research, 6 (1), 9–25. DOI:10.1177/1468794106058866.

Abstract: This article makes an argument for a ‘qualitatively driven’ approach to mixing methods. It focuses on the value of mixed-methods approaches for researching questions about social experience and lived realities. It suggests that ‘qualitative thinking’ is a useful starting point for mixing methods, but that it is ultimately more helpful to think in terms of multi-dimensional research strategies that transcend or even subvert the so-called qualitative-quantitative divide. Mixing methods helps us to think creatively and ‘outside the box’, to theorize beyond the micro-macro divide, and to enhance and extend the logic of qualitative explanation. Mixed-methods approaches raise challenges in reconciling different epistemologies and ontologies, and in integrating different forms of data and knowledge. The article argues that we should think more in terms of ‘meshing’ or ‘linking’ than ‘integrating’ data and method. It goes on to argue for the development of ‘multi-nodal’ dialogic explanations that allow the distinctiveness of different methods and approaches to be held in creative tension. The article concludes with a discussion of qualitatively derived principles for mixing methods.

Morse, J. (2010). Simultaneous and sequential qualitative mixed methods designs. Qualitative Inquiry, 16 (6), 483–491.

Abstract: Mixed methods, defined as one complete method (as the core project) plus a different simultaneous and sequential supplemental strategy, have been well explicated for combining the most difficult designs—that is, qualitative and quantitative methods. However, experts in qualitative inquiry have relatively ignored the issues that occur while describing qualitative simultaneous and sequential designs in which both components are qualitative. In this article, the author argues that qualitative mixed method designs introduce many of the incompatibility problems of mixed method design that use qualitative and quantitative components. Various qualitatively driven mixed method designs are presented. Then, using an armchair walkthrough, QUAL-qual designs are contextualized within a hypothetical project of breaking bad news, and several examples of QUAL- qual mixed method designs are discussed.