Future challenges for mixed methods research in nursing and the health sciences



Publication Details

Andrew, S. & Halcomb, E. J. (2009). Future challenges for mixed methods research in nursing and the health sciences. In S. Andrew & E. J. Halcomb (Eds.), Mixed Methods Research for Nursing and the Health Sciences (pp. 217-224). Chichester: Wiley-Blackwell.


Nursing and health science researchers have, increasingly, embraced mixed methods to guide their exploration of the complex phenomena that influence human health. The mixed methods approach offers a flexibility and depth of insight that is not possible to achieve thr~ugh the use of either qualitative or quantitative methods alone. DespIte a growth in popularity, it is clear to us that using mix~d. methods approaches in themselves does not me~n that the research IS mhere~tly good. High quality application of the mIxed methods approach re~U1res consideration of the theoretical underpinnings and careful plannmg of data collection methods and analysis techniques. Like its qualitative and quantitative counterparts, the mixed methods a.pproa~h can ~e of variable quality and rigour. In order to maintain the mtegnty of mlx~d methods as a research approach it is vital that researchers engage m scholarly debate within the literature not only regarding phi~osop~ical issues, but also practical considerations, to guide tho~e usmg ~1~ed methods in their research. This text has sought to do thIs by provldmg a combination of practical advice supplemented with contemporary examples from the literature and introducing the reader to t~e cur:ent issues faced by nursing and the health science researchers usmg mIxed methods.

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