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  • 00:05

    [Nataliya Ivankova Discusses Mixed Methods][Why is learning about research methods important?Why is it interesting?]

  • 00:16

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA: I reflected on this question,why learning research is importantand why it is interesting. [Dr. Nataliya Ivankova, AssociateProfessor, Department of Health Services Administration,University of Alabama at Birmingham]I have been teaching research since I came to UAB in 2004,because I was hired in the Human Studies Departmentto teach research.And so, of course, I enjoyed research.

  • 00:38

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: I enjoyed learning about research myself,although I didn't start learning with research.I just ended up being in that fieldas I was going through my studies.Of course, when I came to UAB I was very enthusiastic,specifically since I was bringingqualitative and mixed methods researchon campus in more prominence.

  • 00:60

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: And I was focused on translating that enthusiasm to my students.So I think it's important to learn research because weare all scholar-practitioners.And for students, it's very importantto be able to sustain and maintain knowledge, and sustainthemselves in their professional fields.

  • 01:21

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: They need to be equipped with strategies to seek and generateknowledge by themselves.And I always tell my students, research is fun,because you generate knowledge yourself.And sometimes they don't believe me,because it's difficult, especiallyfor someone who is involved in research for the first time.But then, when they finally get their first data,

  • 01:42

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: they come to me and say, hey, you know.I trust you.[How would you describe mixed methods to a student who hasnot encountered the term before?]Well, this is an interesting question-- the definitionsof mixed methods research.We just finished the book with Vicki Plano Clark,and one of the chapters that we wrote

  • 02:04

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: was on definitions of mixed methods research.So, as you probably have heard from other people,there are multiple definitions.And authors approach defining mixed methods researchfrom different perspectives, different epistemologicalpractices.So for me, or if I were asked to define mixed methodsresearch-- and this is the definition

  • 02:26

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: that I'm using to guide my research practice-- isthe general comprehensive and foundational definitionthat the founding editors of the "Journal of Mixed MethodsResearch," Abbas Tashakkori and John Creswell,provided in their first inaugural issueof this journal, where they very broadly defined mixed methodsresearch as a research approach in which researchers collect,

  • 02:47

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: analyze, and integrate quantitative and qualitativemethods in different stages in their research process.And this is the definition that I use in my writingsand in my teaching about mixed methods research.Whereas, explaining mixed methods researchto students, of course, it dependsupon what stage in their learning about research

  • 03:08

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: and research methods students are in and what field they arecoming from, because in my practice of working at UABand teaching research to studentsfrom different disciplines across campus,I see different variations in terms of understandingwhat is mixed methods research.So for someone who comes from education

  • 03:29

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: and is more grounded in qualitative research,I would probably start with using some examplesand saying, for instance, OK, younotice that students behave in a certain wayor answer in certain ways in classrooms.So that's one way to know what's going on.And another way is maybe to look at their test scores or scores

  • 03:53

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: for their assignment.That's where I would bring the quantitative information.Whereas, if I talk to students from health care managementfield, which is completely quantitative so far, or juststarting to break down to accept mixed methods,I would start with some example based

  • 04:14

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: on a national annual database, like performance measuresof hospital proficiency, productivity, efficiency,or effectiveness, and how they utilize their beds or whatever.And then I would show how you can actually

  • 04:40

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: talk with the COs or coordinators of the unitswithin the hospital to actually gettheir perspective about what's going on,to understand the patterns in, for instance,utilization of beds for subacute care.So that's how I would approach.And of course, in every example I

  • 05:01

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: would try to explain the advantages of combiningboth quantitative and qualitative methods, or piecesof information, to understand the problem betterand maybe to try to start thinkingabout a possible solution.[What do you see as the key strengths of mixed methods?]

  • 05:25

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: Well, the key advantages of mixed methods, I think,built on my previous answer, is because I think,and many authors in the field think,that combining, integrating in a meaningful wayquantitative and qualitative methods gives youa better understanding of the issues

  • 05:46

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: that you study and helps solicit more comprehensive answersto research problems and approachesto research problems in a more comprehensive way.Again, with the reality of today that funding now

  • 06:09

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: has become quite reduced for research,getting funded a mixed methods project probablywould be more beneficial eventually because you willhelp solicit a more comprehensive, more

  • 06:30

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: in-depth answers, rather than usingjust one of the approaches to approach the issue.So the most recent example of an advantageous useof mixed methods research to get fundedis the recent grant that we receivedas a team at the Department of Health Services Administrationwithin the School of Health Professions.

  • 06:52

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: And I can talk about this because it was alreadyin the news, so it's information that is publicly available.And we actually proposed to use a mixed methodsapproach to study organizational performance of nursing homesthat serve primarily a low-income population that

  • 07:17

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: falls under the Medicaid category.We start, of course, with reviewing the databases.And here, I probably won't give youthe right name of the database.So the data is available.Then we also have a survey that was developed.

  • 07:40

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: Actually, it's a validated surveythat we adjusted for the purposes of the study.And the survey will be completed nationallyby nursing homes that fall under the category.And then, based on the responses and the scores that

  • 07:60

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: will indicate the high and low performance, and alsodifferent categories of who these nursing homes servein terms of ethnicity, income, et cetera,we will follow up with qualitative case studiesand conduct interviews.

  • 08:21

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: We just decided that those will be on site.So we will have to travel, and we don't know yet where,because we depend upon the quantitative results.Since 16 states probably will be involved,we will have to choose from those.And we also plan to involve community members,

  • 08:45

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: maybe conducting focus groups on sites, getting insightinto the issues with the nursing homes on site in those areas.So that's how it is planned.So we'll see.[Are there any limitations to mixed methods?]

  • 09:06

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: Well, of course there are always limitations to every method.And with mixed methods research, on the one handwe try to build on the strengths of both methods.And that's why I think that mixed methods research isadvantageous, because it sort of capitalizes on the strengths.But, at the same time, there is an argument in the literaturethat every method is strong, so you just cannot think about

  • 09:31

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: strengths and limitations of a method.I think it's more important how you bring the two togetherand combine within the study.So I would think the limitations would probablycome from how you utilize the methods, the realityof the project as it unfolds.And also if you are building on the previous strand

  • 09:59

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: of the study or previous results,it's very important to use the correct results to follow upon, so that you're not confused with following upon weak results or non-significant results thatmay be of no importance, and build on those resultsyour qualitative follow up.And eventually, probably you will not

  • 10:21

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: get the answers that you're looking for, or notstrong answers.That would be just one of the limitations.And of course, the major limitation is that, of course,mixed methods study takes more timeto complete and more resources.But if you plan accordingly and in advance, probablythere is a good chance that you will have a better outcome

  • 10:46

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: and will be able to use the mixed methods to the bestadvantage.[What first inspired you to start research in your field?]My involvement with research is actually

  • 11:07

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: an interesting question, because it goes backto my whole history of coming into the United Statesas a fellow.That was an Edmund Muskie-sponsored fellowshipprogram in the late 1990s.And at that time, I actually was an accomplished scholar

  • 11:31

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: within my field of linguistics, contrastive linguisticsprimarily.I worked in Ukraine in one of the universities,teaching linguistics.And I was an administrator.I was dean for admissions.So when I came to the United States,

  • 11:51

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: I actually started in a master's program,as part of the fellowship, studyingeducational administration.So that's when I got interested in research.And then when I started my doctoral programin the University of Nebraska Lincoln,

  • 12:13

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: all doctoral students are requiredto take a certain number of research methods courses,quantitative and qualitative.I was very interested in research.And since I always approach everythinglike I am a perfectionist in certain ways,OK, if I have to do research I needto learn as much as possible about it.

  • 12:35

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: So I started learning.I started taking all possible classes.Luckily, there was a program in educational psychology.And I declared educational psychology or researchas my minor.And by the time I was ready for the candidacy,it turned out that I had more than enough credit hoursfor a master's degree in the quantitative and qualitative

  • 12:57

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: methods.So that's how I became more positionedwithin research methodology.So there was just no question for me,when I got my first job, that it wouldbe a job within the field of research methodology,rather than anything else or educational administration,per se.[Which key thinkers have most inspired you,and who continues to inspire you?]

  • 13:21

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: To speak about who inspired me, especially getting into mixedmethods research, that's without a doubt my mentor,John Creswell, with whom I worked at the Universityof Nebraska Lincoln.So he was the first one who actually introduced meto mixed methods research and to the key readings.And there were quite a few at that time,because it was just the end of the 1990s.

  • 13:43

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: And so at that time, I primarily, of course,focused on the writings of John Creswell, Abbas Tashakkori,Charles Teddlie, and Jennifer Greene.And I would say that these four scholars reallyinfluenced how I approach and understand

  • 14:04

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: mixed methods research.And then, of course, as I was developing and growing myself,I was learning from my colleagues and other authorsin the field, like Burke Johnson and Tony Onwuegbuzie,and of course my friend, Vicki Plano Clark.And I also learn from my students.I need to emphasize this.I always learn from my doctoral students with whom I work,

  • 14:27

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: because I have served and continueto serve in many dissertation committees.And most of them are mixed methods studies.And, of course, each student bringshis own or her own perspective and, specifically,the content area and the issues from their professional field.

  • 14:49

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: Just trying to conceptualize how you can apply mixed methodsresearch to the specific content area and the problemis fascinating and a part of the learning experience, as well.[What is community-based participatory action research,and can you tell us about when you took this approach?]

  • 15:11

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: Well, this is actually an area that I gotinvolved maybe five years ago.And it actually started very interestingly.When I was in the human studies and Iwas serving different programs within the school,I was approached to develop a course on mixed methods

  • 15:34

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: applications in action research for doctoral studentsin educational leadership, because these students arepractitioners in their role.And they want to use their own problemsthat they face in their own settingsfor dissertation research, which is quite normal.

  • 15:54

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: And the traditional design-based coursethat I was offering once a year at that time probablywas not serving their needs.So that's where I started.So I started, OK, I know the practical side of the issue.

  • 16:15

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: Now, how can I bring mixed methodsso that it helps emphasize and bringthe rigor into trying to solve those practical issues?And I started looking, reading the literaturethat's the whole story.So I ended up publishing a book on mixed methods applicationsin action research.

  • 16:36

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: But action research is an umbrella term.It actually incorporates community-based perspectives,participatory perspectives, all approaches thatcan fall under action research that addressthe needs of the people and their practical needs,

  • 16:57

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: professional needs, community-based needs.In terms of the project, so I told youabout doctoral dissertations, and that was probablythe bulk of my participation or helping studentsto address those issues and use mixed methods

  • 17:18

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: research in their dissertation studies--addressing those practical needs.But then, the University of Alabama Birminghamis very focused on participatory approaches, as I told before,and bringing in the community needs into research

  • 17:42

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: and solving the research issues.So I'm thinking about a project.You know, I cannot separate probably one project that wouldserve as an example.But all the projects that I'm working on, in different ways,address those needs and use those approaches.

  • 18:07

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: Specifically, I need to say that with my involvementand as a mixed methods expert, on those projects we alwaysincorporate the elements of stakeholders of useand use different types of approaches.

  • 18:27

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: I work a lot with the topic of organ donationand, actually, attitudes of African-American peopleto becoming a registered organ donor.So I work with Dr. Derek DuBay, who is a transplant surgeon,and we have a long history of working

  • 18:48

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: through that topic with him.So it may not fall under a traditional action researchstudy.But the eventual aim is to implement interventionat the DMV, where people make decisionsto become or not to become a registered organ donor.

  • 19:08

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: And we are doing a lot of focus groups,as well as different types of interviews, talking to people,trying to understand their decisions why they elector not elect to become a registered organ donor,and trying to understand what can influence or emphasize them

  • 19:31

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: being more positive or encourage themto be part of that process.That would be just one of the examples.And in terms of a true participatory project,probably, I'm guiding one of the dissertationsnow for one of my doctoral students,

  • 19:51

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: who is actually just retired, a school principal.And he is very interested, or waswhen he conceptualized the study,how to advance achievement of students in low-income schools.And he was primarily working within the school districtserving a lot of low-income population.

  • 20:13

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: And so that's just an example of how students become interestedin those issues.And he wanted to do that study to help his school districtand other school districts in Alabama to increase student

  • 20:34

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: achievement by capitalizing on the idea of academic optimism,which is now one of the hot topics in education.[How has the field of health services research changed overtime, and what developments have most influenced you?]I actually came into the health services research field

  • 20:55

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: officially just two years ago.But I was involved in health services research projectsprobably all my tenure at UAB.And what I see, and probably just a sign that I nowam more officially affiliated with this area,is that this field is becoming more acceptive

  • 21:15

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: of qualitative and mixed methods research.Actually, qualitative research is getting into the fieldthrough mixed methods research.And these are the changes that I started seeing.And since I may be uniquely positioned within the UABsystem, in terms of that I was serving Education

  • 21:39

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: and I was serving Public Health, and now I'mserving more of Health Care Managementand School of Nursing students, Isee different levels of acceptanceor different levels of use of mixed methodsresearch in different fields.But the good sign is that mixed methods research

  • 22:01

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: is very well accepted, which makes me very happyand makes me feel useful.And again going back to your question of health servicesresearch, we see a lot of signs that the fieldis moving a little bit away from just being perceived purely

  • 22:22

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: quantitative, relying on large databases,as introducing stakeholders' perspectivesthrough qualitative research.But another thing that I want to emphasizeis that it also brings or encouragesnew understandings of mixed methods research

  • 22:43

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: and the capacity or ability of what mixed methods research cando for the field, because health care management fieldrelies very much on the use of databases.That means that we deal with secondary data sources.And now we bring mixed methods research,which has been mostly discussed as being a method

  • 23:06

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: of the primary data collection.So you conduct quantitative surveys,and then you follow up, or you do that in a parallel manner,whereas now we deal with existing databases,even longitudinal.And we bring in the qualitative perspective, as well.So it opens up a whole new page in the mixed methods research,

  • 23:28

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: which I am very much interested in--in how you actually combine now the secondary sources, and notnecessarily just the quantitative secondary sourceswith primary qualitative.But it could be either way, because there are alsodatabases, especially in nursing,with a lot of qualitative interviews collectedfrom cancer survivors or some other study participants,

  • 23:52

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: that you can use for different purposes.And we also encourage students to use those,because it's existing data.So that would be my answer to this question.And it's, of course, an open-ended question,because it leaves a lot of reflection

  • 24:13

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: and further developments for mixed methods research.[What does being an ethical researcher mean to you?Why are ethics important?]I think that ethics is very important.I would say it just couldn't not be important, because of allthe history that we have.

  • 24:34

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: And I'm not going into those details,but all students study about those.But research should be ethical, in the first place.And in my personal practice, I alwayssee different examples of preserving ethics or securing

  • 24:58

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: ethics in research, depending on the field I'm working on,depending on what kind of methodology I'm using,and what topic I'm interested in.And that was the question I was asked yesterdayin the session when I was talking about mixed methodsapplications in action research.With this area or this approach, you actually

  • 25:20

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: have three sets of ethical issues that you have to handle.Research ethics, in general, relates to, of course,having IRB approval and informed consent,while preserving voluntary participation and security

  • 25:40

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: of the data, anonymity of the participants--all those issues that we have to comply with in any researchproject.Then we bring in the issues of action researchthat come from that specific approach,because action research is very practitioner oriented.Research practitioners do this researchin their own professional settings or communities.

  • 26:02

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: So there is a lot of exposure to real participants.So you have to consider those issues and difficultiesin concealing their identity and preservingtrust relationships, etc.And then there's a whole set of issuesthat mixed methods research brings into the research ethics

  • 26:23

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: arena, because there are certain issues, especiallywith sequential designs.You just have to know the identity of the participantsso that you can follow up with them.That's just one of the examples where mixed methods researchhas an additional layer of ethics

  • 26:43

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: that needs to be observed in doing the research right.And recently I started working with a projectwithin the Veterans Affairs system,and you probably know about that.That brings another set of ethical issues,

  • 27:07

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: especially working with veterans,and being very compliant and very, very,strict about data and the findings and accessto all your data files and everything.Anything that you can even add to the research project,

  • 27:30

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: you have to get all the approvals,and there are more layers of approvalsthan are in, probably, a typical type of project or justwithin the university setting.[What was the most challenging situation you facedas a researcher, and how did you overcome it?]Probably for me as being a researcher

  • 27:51

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: is when I first-- and I would say,just jump into the project-- that I'm asked to help.And it's more challenging when I'masked to step into the project that was approved or fundedalready.

  • 28:12

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: And so you just have to work within the parameters of howthat project was conceptualized by someone.And also the difficulty or the challengeis to also work across disciplines, and specifically,trying to adapt.

  • 28:32

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: And I see this as my role, too.I'm bringing qualitative mixed methods researchin those projects, but I also haveto consider how these approaches are accepted,or even being considered, by the researchers in this field.For instance, in some medical research,

  • 28:57

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: clinicians are more used to quantitative research.So when you bring up the qualitative research, of coursethey look at it from their epistemological perspectivefrom being quantitative researchers.And so you have to make reasonable--and I would emphasize that, reasonable-- adjustmentsto meet the demands of the field and their own epistemological

  • 29:20

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: perspectives, but at the same time,try to preserve the value and the qualityof this new approach that you're bringing in.And that's the challenge that I always facewhen I begin a new project.It's much easier when I already havea working established relationship,like two, three years of working within a team.

  • 29:44

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: But when I'm invited just the first time, sometimesI just have to figure out how do I belongand how can I contribute, or whatwould be my emphasis in that type of project or researchor even conduct area that they're working in.

  • 30:04

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: [Which piece of research are you most proud of, and why?]That's an interesting question.Of course, you are always proud of researchthat you've done or published.For instance, I'm proud of the bookthat I wrote, because that was a huge personal challenge for me.

  • 30:26

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: In the first place, that was not an intent, to write a book.I'm referring to the book, "Mixed Methods Applicationsand Action Research."And of course, I'm proud of it.But probably, I would say that I'mvery proud of my dissertation study,because that was the study that looked at doctoral students'

  • 30:49

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: persistence in the online program,using a mixed methods approach.At that time, there was so littleknown practically about how to do mixed methods research.Most conceptualizations were more at the theoretical level.So when I started, first conceptualizing and then

  • 31:12

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: implementing the study, I had to solve many practical issues,procedural issues of what to actually do about mixedmethods.For instance, we knew from writings at those timesthat you have to follow up in a sequential design, when youstart with quantitative and follow upwith qualitative, with certain cases or certain participants.

  • 31:37

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: But how to select them?There was nothing in the field.So I had to solve many procedural issueslike that, and after that, of course, have published.And what I know-- and just yesterday, John Creswellconfirmed-- that the article that I wrote and publishedin 2006, actually describing my implementation

  • 31:58

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: process of this design, this articlecontinues to stay very current and is stillone of the most cited and most usablearticles from the journal "Field Methods."So I would say that I am most proud of that,because for me it was a great challenge.

  • 32:18

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: And I made it a point to use mixed methodsand to help contribute to its development,and I think I maybe helped in this way.[Which piece of research has had the most impact?]

  • 32:39

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: The article where I explained the actual process, how to.And since then, I was always focusing on how to,and I will lean more to that practice, how-to perspective,in doing mixed methods research.Having written the book, "Mixed Methods Applicationsin Action Research," for which I developed

  • 33:01

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: a theoretical framework, which I had calledmixed methods theoretical framework for action research,I have been presenting for several yearsalready at different conferences about that frameworkand its application.And just in yesterday's session, it was discussed in termsthat it's a pioneer work, so I thought,OK, I probably should be proud of that, too.Yeah, of course I am.

  • 33:22

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: Yes, so it's kind of interesting.So I think that every researcher brings somethinginto writing about research.And if you make a difference, if other peoplethink it's relevant and it's usable,I think that's what makes it important

  • 33:42

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: and makes you be proud of it.[What advice would you give to a student embarking on a researchproject for the first time?]The advice that I always give to studentswho start their research projects-- and, of course,we talk about qualitative and mixed methodsbecause these are the projects that I mostly

  • 34:03

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: work with-- I would say, be persistent, because persistenceis the key point in reaching the goal.And there are different situationsthat I saw and was part of and helped the students, sometimes

  • 34:29

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: when they were kind of discouragedto do a certain type of project or usea certain type of methodology like mixed methodsbecause it may take longer.But if a student has a vision and a passionand-- I would even say-- a dream of doing the project,

  • 34:52

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: I would encourage the students, just stay persistent and do it.Try to find a way to persuade your committee,to persuade your mentor, that this is the way to do it.And again, in yesterday's session here at AERA,we were discussing that question.It just emerged in the discussionafter everybody's presentation.And it was just very advantageous

  • 35:14

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: that one of my doctoral students wasin the audience, who worked actuallyfor having his mixed methods study approvedby the committee, who was initially just tryingto dissuade him from this approachjust for the practicality, not because they wereagainst the approach itself.

  • 35:35

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: It's a very complicated study.But he persisted and he was approved.He is doing the study now, collecting the data.And so I asked him to talk about his insights.And that was so helpful to other doctoral students whowere in the session, because one thing isto hear from the instructor, one way is to hear from a peer.

  • 35:58

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: So I would say, be persistent, have a vision,and have a passion.And keep in mind that research is fun,because you are generating knowledge yourself.[What are the practical benefits of studying research methodsfor a student's academic or professional future?]

  • 36:18

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: Research is part of our lives.So it's important for students to developskills to be able to find the information,because research is about finding informationand utilizing it, or finding the ways to use this informationto the benefit.

  • 36:40

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: And in this case, it's either academic or professionalpractice.So we can no longer rely on our practitionersto return back for training and being nourished or fedwith the knowledge.

  • 37:00

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: We rely more now on evidence-based practices.That's why we need our graduates to beable to be scholar-practitioners,as I already said.And that's why I think that the skill to find informationand to use it but, at the same time,

  • 37:24

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: be an informed consumer of research,because you have to actually evaluateresearch or such findings that are reportedto know whether they are trustworthy, credible, valid,reliable, or to use them in your own practice.So that's the most important thingthat I would say-- being an informed consumer of research.

  • 37:48

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: And that's what I'm trying to teach my students in allmy research methods classes.[What new research directioins do you find most exciting?]Well, of course, the most exciting probably for me,because I relate to mixed methods research,

  • 38:10

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: is that mixed methods research is gaining such an expansion.It's great recognition.And as we already talked, it's being utilized more and morein the fields that stayed so far from using mixed methodsresearch.

  • 38:31

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: We talked about health care management,which is a very quantitative field thatis using a lot of mixed methods research now.You also can look at education, specifically classroom teachereducation, which was primarily qualitativebecause of the action research approaches.But mixed methods is there now, as well.

  • 38:52

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: So it's across the board, and that'sthe most exciting thing for me.And of course, I also welcome the ideaof bringing in the stakeholders into the research process,actually having their voices heard,and resonate with the participant-centered approaches

  • 39:16

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: as related to research, and this is great.[Where would you like to take your own research?]I see myself as working in two areas,and again, it's mostly mixed methods research.

  • 39:39

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: First, I work as a practitioner, as a methodologist, because Iwork on different projects.And so here, I bring the practical perspectiveinto actually using mixed methods researchto address those different issuesthat different researchers try to solve on campus.

  • 40:01

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: Parallel to that, I am more and moreinvolved in the theoretical part of mixed methods research,writing about it, and helping advancethe field in the usable way, in the practical way.And one of the most recent projectsthat we started with Vicki Plano Clark,

  • 40:23

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: we co-edit the series of mixed methodsresearch with SAGE Publications.It's a book series with short, practical-focused books,aimed specifically for how to use mixed methods researchand all the issues and challenges that

  • 40:43

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: are related to these issues.And so that's another big projectthat I am involved in, working with the authors,soliciting ideas, and then guidingthe development of those books, which is very exciting,because in this process you learn a lot from the people

  • 41:06

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: with whom you work.You learn a lot about the field and the new developmentsof the field, and you also learn aboutto what extent mixed methods is flexible and is being utilizedfor different purposes and in different areas, because all

  • 41:30

    DR. NATALIYA IVANKOVA [continued]: these authors bring their unique perspectives into the process.


Dr. Nataliya Ivankova talks about her work in mixed methods research and how she came to be interested in research methods. Mixed methods research was a new idea when she began working on it, and she developed many of its foundational procedures. She continues to work with academic and practitioner researchers to extend mixed methods into new fields.

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Nataliya Ivankova Discusses Mixed Methods

Dr. Nataliya Ivankova talks about her work in mixed methods research and how she came to be interested in research methods. Mixed methods research was a new idea when she began working on it, and she developed many of its foundational procedures. She continues to work with academic and practitioner researchers to extend mixed methods into new fields.

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