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Mixed methods research : a world of metaphors
chapterposted on 06.12.2017, 00:00 by Roslyn Cameron
Mixed methods research (MMR) challenges researchers on many levels. It offers opportunities for innovation and multiple perspectives and insights to a research problem or phenomenon and it also challenges some very foundational assumptions and deeply entrenched worldviews about what is rigorous research and what can and can’t be “mixed” across particular research traditions. It is a movement which is gaining popularity and one discipline which has championed the movement has been education. The aim of this chapter is to follow the journey of MMR and its use of metaphors from the talismanic concept of ‘triangulation’ through to the use of contemporary MMR specific metaphors such as ‘fusion’, ‘blending’ and ‘morphing’. These metaphors symbolise a research movement and community which is gaining greater sophistication even though it is a movement still in its adolescence. The chapter will then present a guiding framework for reporting MMR for those contemplating undertaking a mixed methods study and will indicate where in this framework the use of metaphors can assist in justifying and explaining complex MMR studies.