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Table 6 Roles of methods in mixed methods studies in HSR

From: Why, and how, mixed methods research is undertaken in health services research in England: a mixed methods study

Role of quantitative   
  Proposal (N = 43) Report (N = 48)
   Test effectiveness 47% (20) 46% (22)
   Describe 40% (17) 54% (26)
   Explain variability 26% (11) 21% (10)
   Determine sample for qualitative 35% (15) 40% (19)
   Generalise the qualitative findings 5% (2) 4% (2)
   Generate consensus 5% (2) 2% (1)
   Psychometrically test 2% (1) 4% (2)
   Provide topic guide for qualitative 2% (1) 4% (2)
Role of qualitative   
   Develop the research question 0% (0) 0% (0)
   Generate hypothesis 0% (0) 0% (0)
   Establish theoretical framework 2% (1) 2% (1)
   Determine sample 2% (1) 0% (0)
   Generate content of instrument 30% (13) 10% (5)
   Cognitively test instrument 9% (4) 6% (3)
   Aid scale construction 0% (0) 2% (1)
   Test validity of questionnaire 0% (0) 2% (1)
   Develop intervention 16% (7) 13% (6)
   Pilot intervention 2% (1) 2% (1)
   Describe intervention 12% (5) 4% (2)
   Study how intervention works 19% (8) 8% (4)
   Study how the service works 5% (2) 13% (6)
   Study intervention in practice 12% (5) 6% (3)
   Process evaluation 14% (6) 4% (2)
   Views of intervention 2% (1) 8% (4)
   Determine outcomes and measures 0% (0) 0% (0)
   Improve trial methodology 5% (2) 2% (1)
   Explore RCT as social construct 2% (1) 0% (0)
   Facilitate user involvement 0% (0) 2% (1)
   Explore an issue 33% (14) 38% (18)
   Uncover issues inaccessible to quant 7% (3) 0% (0)
   Explore acceptability of care 7% (3) 6% (3)
   Assess effectiveness 0% (0) 2% (1)
   Explain relationships 12% (5) 10% (5)
   Explore unusual findings 0% (0) 0% (0)
   Explore issues from quantitative 7% (3) 4% (2)
   Explore identified unusual groups 2% (1) 0% (0)
   Offer case illustrations 5% (2) 6% (3)
   Offer depth information on new cases 12% (5) 6% (3)
   Confirm a quantitative finding 2% (1) 4% (2)
   Understand results in real world 7% (3) 2% (1)