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Education: Quantitative/Qualitative Articles

A guide for locating online research resources in Education

Qualitative/Quantitative Articles

How do I find qualitative or quantitative articles?

Unfortunately, there is no database filter to help you limit to qualitative or quantitative articles. Instead, you'll need to adjust your search terms to help you limit your results. 

To search for qualitative articles, try adding ("qualitative research" or "qualitative study") to your search.

Additionally, you can also try adding search terms related to specific qualitative methods. Here are a few you can try:

  • "Narrative research"
  • "Case study"
  • Ethnography
  • "Grounded theory"
  • "focus group interview"
  • "discourse analysis"
  • Observations

To search for quantitative studies, try adding ("quantitative research" or "quantitative study") to your search. 

Additionally, you can also try adding search terms related to specific quantitative methods. Here are a few you can try:

  • Survey or "survey instrument"
  • Experimental or quasi-experimental
  • Correlation or "correlational design"
  • Variables or factors

How can I determine if an article is qualitative or quantitative? 

First, try looking at the article's abstract. The abstract will usually indicate if the article is qualitative or quantitative. If you don't see the methods listed in the abstract, look for the methods or methodology section of the article. This section will provide a detailed description of the methods used in the research study. 

The article might not use qualitative or quantitative to describe its methods; instead, it might list a more specific type of research methodology, like case study or grounded theory. If you're not sure whether a specific methodology is quantitative or qualitative, check the SAGE Research Methods database to find out more about a particular methodology and whether it is considered qualitative or quantitative. 


How can I eliminate mixed methods studies from my search results?

There is no perfect way to remove all mixed methods studies from your search results, but you can remove some of them by adding NOT "mixed methods" to your search statement:

Database screenshot showing a search for NOT "mixed methods" 

 

Alternatively, you can add NOT quantitative when you're searching for qualitative studies, and NOT qualitative when searching for quantitative studies.