I was involved in a really useful meeting today looking at a mixed method study that involved the sequential use of community-based participatory action research as a hypothesis generation tool, followed by a more quantitative testing of emergent themes and theory from that study....
Mixed methods studies have so many advantages and can be used in many different ways.
1. Quant data can support qual analysis, triangulating, or adding trustworthiness to findings
2. Qual studies can be nested in bigger quant studies like randomised control trials
3. Quant and qual studies can be done simultaneously with both sets of findings analysed together (the inside and outside views)
4. Qual studies can generate hypotheses that are then tested by quant studies
There are many more designs of course...if you want to know more I highly reccommend the following book chapter, just email me firstname.lastname@example.org if you are a Usyd student and want access to it..
Research design : qualitative, quantitative, and mixed methods approaches / John W. Creswell.
Edition 2nd ed. Publisher Thousand Oaks, Calif. : Sage Publications, c2003. Chapter 11: Mixed methods procedures
Mix it up!!!!