Elgar original reference
Edited by Sten Söderman and Harald Dolles
Many social and behavioral science researchers have promoted the use of mixed methods to more effectively answer research questions (Brewer and Hunter, 1989; Johnson and Onwuegbuzie, 2004; Tashakkori and Teddlie, 1998, 2003). Such an approach has generally been defined as the combining of at least one quantitative method and one qualitative method (e.g., Hanson et al., 2005; Jick. 1979; Maxwell and Loomis, 2003). Combining quantitative and qualitative data in a single study can be beneficial in a variety of ways. For example, the researcher can triangulate which involves combining quantitative and qualitative methods to produce a set of data that has complementary strengths and nonoverlapping weaknesses (Brewer and Hunter, 1989; Johnson and Onwuegbuzie, 2004; Johnson and Turner, 2003; Tashakkori and Teddlie, 1998). This concept of combining approaches for complementary strengths and non overlapping weaknesses has been called the fundamental principle of mixed research (Johnson and Turner, 2003). The idea is to strategically select a mixture of quantitative and qualitative approaches that will effectively cover the objective or set of objectives of a research study and to do it in a way that eliminates overall study design weaknesses.
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