ERIC Number: EJ1035412
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 39
A Mixed Methods Content Analysis of the Research Literature in Science Education
Schram, Asta B.
International Journal of Science Education, v36 n15 p2619-2638 2014
In recent years, more and more researchers in science education have been turning to the practice of combining qualitative and quantitative methods in the same study. This approach of using mixed methods creates possibilities to study the various issues that science educators encounter in more depth. In this content analysis, I evaluated 18 studies from science education journals as they relate to the definition, design, and overall practice of using mixed methods. I scrutinized a purposeful sample, derived from 3 journals (the "International Journal of Science Education," the "Journal of Research in Science Teaching," and the "Research in Science Education") in terms of the type of data collected, timing, priority, design, the mixing of the 2 data strands in the studies, and the justifications authors provide for using mixed methods. Furthermore, the articles were evaluated in terms of how well they met contemporary definitions for mixed methods research. The studies varied considerably in the use and understanding of mixed methods. A systematic evaluation of the employment of mixed methods methodology was used to identify the studies that best reflected contemporary definitions. A comparison to earlier content analyses of mixed methods research indicates that researchers' knowledge of mixed methods methodology may be increasing. The use of this strategy in science education research calls, however, for an improved methodology, especially concerning the practice of mixing. Suggestions are given on how to best use this approach.
Descriptors: Mixed Methods Research, Content Analysis, Science Education, Literature Reviews, Educational Research, Qualitative Research, Statistical Analysis, Journal Articles, Definitions, Research Design, Research Methodology, Educational Practices, Data, Time Perspective, Bibliometrics
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research; Information Analyses
Education Level: N/A
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