Quantitative and qualitative researchers are often perceived as opposing forces in the research world. However, despite their differences in methodology and approach, these two types of research are in agreement on many philosophical assumptions.
One major philosophical assumption that both quantitative and qualitative researchers share is the belief in objectivity. While qualitative research is often seen as subjective due to its focus on participant perspectives and experiences, qualitative researchers still strive for objectivity in their analysis and interpretation of data. Similarly, quantitative researchers also aim for objectivity in their statistical analyses and measurements.
Another philosophical assumption that both quantitative and qualitative researchers share is the importance of context. In qualitative research, context is often a key factor in understanding participant experiences and perspectives. In quantitative research, context is also important in terms of understanding the variables being measured and the external factors that may influence them.
Additionally, both types of research recognize the importance of theory in shaping research questions and guiding analysis. Qualitative researchers often use theoretical frameworks to guide their data collection and analysis, while quantitative researchers use statistical models that are rooted in theory. Both approaches recognize the importance of theory in driving research and providing a foundation for analysis.
Finally, both quantitative and qualitative researchers emphasize the need for rigor in research. While the types of rigor may differ in each approach, both emphasize the need for systematic and transparent methods to ensure the validity and reliability of data.
In summary, while quantitative and qualitative research may differ in methodology and approach, they share many important philosophical assumptions. Both approaches recognize the importance of objectivity, context, theory, and rigor in conducting valid and reliable research. By acknowledging these shared assumptions, researchers can appreciate the strengths of both types of research and use them in conjunction to provide a more complete understanding of complex phenomena.