Revisiting the quantitative-qualitative debate: Implications for mixed-methods research

J.E.M. Sale, L.H. Lohfeld, K. Brazil

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

337 Citations (Scopus)


Health care research includes many studies that combine quantitative and qualitative methods. In this paper, we revisit the quantitative-qualitative debate and review the arguments for and against using mixed-methods. In addition, we discuss the implications stemming from our view, that the paradigms upon which the methods are based have a different view of reality and therefore a different view of the phenomenon under study. Because the two paradigms do not study the same phenomena, quantitative and qualitative methods cannot be combined for cross-validation or triangulation purposes. However, they can be combined for complementary purposes. Future standards for mixed-methods research should clearly reflect this recommendation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)43-53
Number of pages11
JournalQuality and Quantity
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 01 Jan 2002

Bibliographical note

Copyright 2004 Elsevier Science B.V., Amsterdam. All rights reserved.

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