HIV Community Based Research

Bringing Community & Academia together through research

Mixed Method

Mixed Method is very simply a combination of qualitative and quantitative research.

This may take many forms in the combination of gathering data in “numbers”, and giving those numbers context or explanation through narrative information. The most important thing to remember when using mixed method in your proposal is that one method must inform the other. For example, the qualitative portion needs to support the quantitative data to provide evidence for the same finding, not different aspects of your project. When one method gathers data pertaining to a different aspect of the other, then you are using two separate methods, not mixed methods. How one method feeds into the other should be very clear in your proposal when you plan to use mixed methods.

The combination of numbers, and narrative information to explain the numbers is very useful for community-based research. Numbers alone don’t always fully explain the research data we gather and for this reason we also collect information from the research participants in the narrative form. This can be done in many creative ways from interviews, to “mapping” techniques, focus groups, “photovoice” and “digital storytelling” to name a few. These methods aid in the incorporation of the GIPA principle or greater involvement of people with AIDS, into the CBR project. Many CBR projects employ community members to gather this information with their peers. With training, this can be a very empowering experience for people living with HIV and keeps the HIV community directly involved on the front line of the CBR project.