Utilisation and prevalence of mixed methods research in library and information research in South Africa 2002-2008

Patrick Ngulube, Koketso Mokwatlo, Sipho Ndwandwe

Abstract


This article explores the use of mixed methods research (MMR) in library and information science (LIS) research in South Africa from 2000 to 2008. The authors contrast the mixed methods research debate in the general methodological literature to how this method was practiced within the LIS scientific community. They reviewed 613 research articles published in six peer-reviewed LIS journals in South Africa, finding the research methods in these journals to be surveys drawing on positivistic assumptions and cross-sectional designs, and historical research based on constructivist knowledge claims. Mixed methods approaches that the authors identified in the methodological literature have had little impact on LIS research in South Africa. Given these limitations, the authors argue for greater methodological pluralism in conducting research in LIS and recommend the use of mixed methods research.

Keywords


Evaluation of research; methodological pluralism; mixed methods research; research design; research in library and information science

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7553/75-2-91

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