This paper contains a discussion about the dichotomy between qualitative and quantitative research paradigms in context of social and behavioral science field in general and the field of educational research, in the USA. Discussions are constructed around the relationship between knowledge, researcher, epistemology and methodology based on the papers by Peter Demerath, 2006 and Anthony J. Onwuegbuzie & Nancy L. leech, 2005. In general the second paper points out the debate about qualitative and quantitative research paradigms and results of the debate in social and behavioral science fields. Thus, as solution it proposes an alternative methodology to re-frame the concept of research and also it terms people who utilize from this methodology as pragmatic researchers. As for the first paper also points out the debate about qualitative and quantitative research methodologies but it emphasizes that qualitative research and qualitative researchers are disregarded in the context of scientifically based research and proposes five modes of response for qualitative researchers to adopt in the current climate of scientifically based research that holds to limited conceptions. Both papers discuss the issues in the USA and attribute the problems that stem from the debate about qualitative and quantitative research paradigms to the institutions in the USA.
Firstly, in both papers “scientific knowledge” is defined as subjective. Onwuegbuzie stated that positivists’ claim that the essence of science is objective verification, and that their methods are objective is a mis-claim that arise from their narrow definition of the concept of science. For instance, in developing instruments that yield empirical data, psychometricians select items, which represents a subjective decision at every stage of the instrument development process in attempt to represent the content domain adequately (Onwuegbuzie& Leech, 2005). Hence, although the final version of the instrument can lead to…
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