Mixed methods of research are also known as Multimethodology that is a combination of both qualitative as well as quantitative research methods. This approach of research method is useful because in single investigation or sustained program of inquiry, the systematic integration can be achieved. With such integration of both qualitative (focus groups, interviews etc.) and quantitative (experiments and surveys), the researcher can gain breadth and depth of understanding and corroboration, while offsetting the weakness inherent to using each approach by itself (Patten, Newhart, 2017). This method encourages the collection of more comprehensive evidence study problems; helps to answer questions that neither qualitative nor quantitative can able to provide alone. The need of mixed methods in research is essential because of the complexity of problems that needs to be addressed, the rise of interest in qualitative research and the practical need to gather multiple forms of data for diverse audience. For validating findings using qualitative and quantitative data sources, using qualitative data to investigate quantitative findings, designing and developing survey instruments, and involving community-based stakeholders, combination of research methods are required (Alex, Thomas, 2017). Below are some of advantages of mixed methods of research: Data comparison of qualitative and quantitative- Mixed method determines the contradictions present in quantitative results and qualitative findings. Contribute to defeat the limitations or weakness of qualitative or quantitative research methods- Less understanding of the context or setting in which people behave is a common weakness of quantitative research method while qualitative research have a deficiency because of the potential for biased interpretations made by researchers and the difficulty in generalizing findings to a large groups (Patten, Newhart, 2017). By
merging both approaches, the strength of each approach can make up for the weakness of the other. Achievement of methodological flexibility- Researchers can adapt too many study designs such as observational studies and randomized trials through which results have a broader perspective of the overall issue or research problems (Alex, Thomas, 2017). Gathering rich and comprehensive data- This method combines inductive and deductive thinking and reasoning along with the final results including observations and statistical analyses. Some limitations or disadvantages of mixed method research are as below: In this type of method of research, the design can be very complex as decision about what type of research design to be used is important question to take into account to cover overall purpose of the research. This design should include specific research questions, the strengths and weaknesses of each research designs. There is always a complexity of evaluations are observed with mixed method of research as they require careful planning to describe all aspects of research, including the study sample for qualitative and quantitative portions (Patten, Newhart, 2017). This method consumes more time as well as resources to plan and implement the design as it has to collect both qualitative and quantitative data. There is a difficultly faced to plan and implement one method by drawing on the findings of another. Due to this when discrepancies arise in the interpretations of the findings, occurrence of unclear condition is observed for its resolution (Alex, Thomas, 2017).
A multidisciplinary team of expert researchers is required to perform this type of research approaches who must be open to methods that may not be their area of expertise. References: W. Alex Edmonds, Thomas D. Kennedy (2017).An Applied Guide to Research Designs: Quantitative, Qualitative, and Mixed Methods, 2ndEdition, SAGE publications. Patten L. Mildred, Newhart Michelle, (2017).Understanding Research Methods: An Overview of the Essentials, 10thedition, NewYork publication.