“On becoming a pragmatic researcher: the importance of combining quantitative and qualitative research” by Onwuegbuzie and Leech (2005), “Single-Subject Experimental Research”, “Narrative Research”, and “Ethnographic Research”, the chapters form the book by Gay, L. R., Mills, G., & Airasian (2008), are the readings for this week. Considering these readings, it can be stressed that the main topics they discuss are the importance and peculiarities of different research methodologies and the significance of their combination in practice. The key points in the readings is that it is crucial to use the combination of not only qualitative or only quantitative research but also the mix of qualitative and quantitative research.
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Referencing personal experience, it should be mentioned that the combination of qualitative and quantitative research can be and should be easily used in practice. For example, educators may use such quantitative method for research as single-subject experimental design (using the class as one group) and the qualitative narrative research (having collected the personal information of each student in class, in group) in combination (Gay, Mills, & Airasian, 2008). Those methods can be implemented with the purpose to compare and contrast the situations in the life of different students. This is important for conducting a student-oriented approach in education. First, a teacher gets the information about each of the students and then compares it with the whole picture of the class. It may help understand how a student suits the class atmosphere and whether it is easy for him/her to blend into this class. Thus, it is crucial to see that different research methodologies for research may be easily used in combination. The difference of used methods depends on the main purpose of the research and the opportunities for data collection.
Furthermore, the reading, relating to the week’s topic, make it possible to understand that the quantitative and qualitative research are not so different and there are great many of different similarities that presuppose the use of the types of these methodologies in combination. It is crucial to be able to conduct not only qualitative or only quantitative research, but also utilize and appreciate these doth varieties. Furthermore, the reading helped to understand that conducting one kind of research (let it be quantitative) is impossible without the other, qualitative research. To become the professional in the
After the class discussions and the consideration of the readings, some things became clearer for me. First of all, some new types of research methodologies were learnt, such as single-subject experimental, narrative, and ethnographic research. What influenced my understanding of the research more, is that the research methods may be combined, both quantitative and qualitative. Considering the readings, it was noticed that some scholars consider the quantitative and qualitative research as in the position of competition. I suppose it is wrong as these different kinds of research methodology support and supplement each other. The class discussions and readings made me understand that it is important to be a pragmatic researcher who should estimate the consequences of use of each method and choose the combination of the most appropriate and effective. Thus, it may be concluded that the discussion was very informative and influential for me as it helped understand the real importance of the combination of different types of research and taught how to use those combinations in practice.
Gay, L. R., Mills, G., & Airasian, P. W. (2008). Educational Research, Competencies for Analysis and Applications. New Jersey, Prentice Hall.
Onwuegbuzie, A., & Leech, N. (2005). On Becoming a Pragmatic Researcher: The Importance of Combining Quantitative and Qualitative Research Methodologies. International Journal of Social Research Methodology, 8(5), 375-387.