Transcending the Quantitative-Qualitative Divide with Mixed Methods Research: A Multidimensional Framework for Understanding Congruence and Completeness in the Study of Values

By McLafferty, Charles L., Jr.; Slate, John R. et al. | Counseling and Values, October 2010 | Go to article overview

Transcending the Quantitative-Qualitative Divide with Mixed Methods Research: A Multidimensional Framework for Understanding Congruence and Completeness in the Study of Values


McLafferty, Charles L., Jr., Slate, John R., Onwuegbuzie, Anthony J., Counseling and Values


Quantitative research dominates published literature in the helping professions, Mixed methods research, which integrates quantitative and qualitative methodologies, has received a lukewarm reception. The authors address the iterative separation that infuses theory, praxis, philosophy, methodology, training, and public perception and propose a dimensional viewpoint as a framework for successful integration of mixed methods research, This dimensional perspective demonstrates that mixed methods research techniques are necessary but not sufficient to study spiritual, ethical, and religious value issues. Research of career development, "best practices," nature-nurture, and prayer illustrate weaknesses and opportunities for evaluating dimensional mixed methods approaches.

**********

A great divide has long been present that segregates researchers and practitioners in the helping professions, a division that bifurcates entire disciplines (e.g., psychology, education, and counseling). Although some methodologists maintain that objectivistic and naturalistic research philosophies are contradictory and mutually exclusive paradigms (Smith & Heshusius, 1986), other methodologists insist that qualitative (QUAL) and quantitative (QUAN) research methods can be used interchangeably, and thus the "paradigm wars" are largely irrelevant (Tashakkori & Teddlie, 1998). The resulting pragmatic philosophy calls for the use of QUAL, QUAN, or mixed methods (MM) approaches that are congruent and resonant with the topic of study, the stakeholders' viewpoints, and the application of conclusions (cf. Greene, 2006).

Standardized definitions of QUAN and QUAL research tend to be contextual (Leech & Onwuegbuzie, 2006). For this article, we define QUAN research as that which primarily involves quantifiable, numeric data and the use of statistics. Defining QUAL research is much more elusive (Denzin & Lincoln, 2005); we define QUAL methods as those approaches that primarily involve the use of nonnumeric data, expressed and analyzed in words. MM research, therefore, involves the intentional use of both QUAL and QUAN in a given study. We readily acknowledge deficiencies in this oversimplification.

Research and practice in the helping professions cannot be accomplished solely by mixing QUAL and QUAN methods. A mechanical technician of research methods likely will find only concrete results. We argue that a dimensional framework is required to apply MM research to the spiritual, ethical, and religious values issues present in Counseling and Values.

First, we examine the great divide that permeates counseling, psychology, and education in training, public policy, theory, research, and publication. Then, we provide an overview of the assumptions inherent in the use of QUAL and QUAN data. We believe that a dimensional framework will provide a perspective for understanding MM research of spiritual and religious values. Finally, examples of theory and research are examined through a dimensional legitimation model for congruence and completeness.

College Curricula and Training Programs

Accreditation standards of professional programs have adapted rapidly to include both QUAN and QUAL research methods. Accreditation standards for counseling and school psychology programs specifically mention QUAL (Ponterotto, 2005). The Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP; 2009) specifies a range of methods, "such as qualitative, quantitative, single-case designs, action research, and outcome-based research" (p. 13). Training in both QUAN and QUAL is specified by the National Association of School Psychologists (Ponterotto, 2005). In contrast, the American Psychological Association's standards encourage training in a broad range of methods, without specifying QUAL or QUAN (Ponterotto, 2005).

However, professional training programs in counseling and psychology overwhelmingly favor QUAN research. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Transcending the Quantitative-Qualitative Divide with Mixed Methods Research: A Multidimensional Framework for Understanding Congruence and Completeness in the Study of Values
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.