Mixed methods in geriatrics and gerontology research

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Mixed methods research is defined as the collection, analysis, and integration of both quantitative data (e.g., outcome of a randomized trial, such as decrease in depression score) and qualitative data (e.g., observations or interviews about the experience of persons with depression) to provide a more comprehensive understanding of a research problem than might be obtained through quantitative or qualitative approaches alone. Because mixed methods research designs place high value on the stories behind the numbers - both in exploratory designs where the experiences and insights of the community under study inform the quantitative investigation, and in explanatory designs where they illuminate the quantitative data - mixed methods are especially appropriate in studying the problems of older adults and caregivers. The goal of this chapter is to introduce the concept of mixed methods as an approach for research in Geriatrics and Gerontology. We will discuss (1) why an investigator might consider using mixed methods; (2) basic and complex mixed methods designs; (3) examples of mixed methods projects, drawing upon our own research; and, (4) challenges in carrying out mixed methods research.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationAging Research - Methodological Issues
Subtitle of host publicationSecond Edition
PublisherSpringer International Publishing
Number of pages14
ISBN (Electronic)9783319953878
ISBN (Print)9783319953861
StatePublished - Sep 25 2018


  • Complex mixed methods designs
  • Mixed methods research
  • Novel designs for aging research

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)
  • Social Sciences(all)
  • Psychology(all)


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