A 41-Year History of Mixed Methods Research in Education: A Mixed Methods Bibliometric Study of Published Works from 1980 to 2021


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Authors

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.59455/jomes.2022.6.2

Keywords:

Educational research methodology, integration, 1 1 = 3 integration, 1 1 = 1 integration, partial integration, full(er) integration, integrated mixed methods research, integrative, integrated, and integral way of thinking

Abstract

Over the last three decades, several researchers have investigated the prevalence of mixed methods research studies across numerous fields and disciplines—known as prevalence rate studies. With the exception of the field of nursing, the field of education in general and the discipline of mathematics education in particular consistently have had the highest prevalence rates of mixed methods research. However, the latest year examined in these education-based prevalence rate studies has been 2010. Yet, the last 12 years have witnessed rapid developments in the field of mixed methods research. Therefore, in this report, we use a mixed methods bibliometric approach—comprising bibliometric quantitative data being integrated with qualitative data—to document the prevalence and use of mixed methods research in the field of education since the paradigm wars of the 1980s, in general, and since 2010, in particular. A systematic review of the ProQuest, ERIC database, via Python coding, revealed that published mixed methods research in education grew exponentially during the first two decades of the 2000s. From 2017 to 2021, the percentage of mixed methods research studies represented within the total number of educational research publications increased yearly, with mixed methods research representing 6% in 2017 to 7.9% in 2021 of the published educational research studies. In 2021, only 78 published articles were identified that included “mixed method(s)” in the title (i.e., mixed methods-declared research studies)—indicating that at least 175 of the 253 indexed education-based journals (69.17%) did not include any mixed methods-declared research articles in any of their 2021 issues. Even more disturbingly, more than two thirds of these 78 education-based mixed methods-declared research articles either involved no integration (9.0%) or minimal integration (i.e., 59.0%) of the quantitative and qualitative components/phases, with only 12.8% involving what could be considered to represent full(er) integration of the quantitative and qualitative components/phases throughout many, if not most or all, stages of the mixed methods research process. Therefore, we call on more educational researchers seriously to consider adopting an integrative, integrated, and integral way of thinking, in order to help the field of mixed methods research grow from its current status of young adulthood to fully fledged adulthood.

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Published

2023-05-03

How to Cite

Onwuegbuzie, A. J., Mallette, M. H., & Mallette, K. M. (2023). A 41-Year History of Mixed Methods Research in Education: A Mixed Methods Bibliometric Study of Published Works from 1980 to 2021. Journal of Mixed Methods Studies, (6), 7–56. https://doi.org/10.59455/jomes.2022.6.2