Tashane Haynes-Brown completes her Visiting Scholar Program at the M3RSP
Visiting Scholar Tashane Haynes-Brown is pursuing a Ph.D. in Teacher Education and Teacher Development at the University of the West Indies, Mona Campus in Jamaica. She came to the Michigan Mixed Methods Research and Scholarship Program to receive guidance and finish writing her dissertation on teachers’ use of technology in the classroom and the beliefs that shape these decisions and actions. At the end of the Visiting Scholars Program, Tashane shared some thoughts on her 8-week long research and mentorship experience.
What is the hardest part about mixed methods research?
Ensuring that I had a solid foundation in both quantitative and qualitative methods, and then being able to properly integrate the findings. Being able to tell that story properly from both the quant and the qual.
Do you think people at your institution have a clear understanding of mixed methods research?
Mixed methods is just coming into its own in the Caribbean. People are just now recognizing that mixed methods is in fact its own genre and has its own set of methodologies, philosophical underpinnings, and approaches that are best suited for it. In the Caribbean, we are just learning about mixed methods.
Are you hoping to teach mixed methods?
Definitely. At the end of this dissertation, I want to not only focus on teacher education and development, but I also want to be steeped in the methodology in such a way that I can offer guidance and assistance to scholars across the Caribbean. It’s more about the methodology than it is about the content. If you truly understand the methodology, then the content is going to be more enhanced. I want to be a mixed methods person who is not just steeped in content specific to education, but to be so steeped in mixed methods research that regardless of where you’re from, your educational background, or your content area, you should be able to do a very good mixed methods study. Which is what I see happening here, where the guidance you receive and the mentorship helps you to think more like a methodologist.
Since being here, what have you learned about being a teacher or mentor?
What I learned from my mentors is how to think as a methodologist. I also learned how to give advice that is specific to the methodology, but at the same time helps the person think about their content. I observed my mentors in terms of how they listened and how they gave advice. I would like to adopt the same kind of principles in my work. The workshop was also very pivotal in helping me to think about my role as a mixed methods teacher in the future. They had a specific focus on ensuring first of all you have a solid understanding of the core mixed methods research designs, and building all the other things around those designs.
Was it a good time to come here in this stage of your dissertation writing?
I needed this. I had done all the data collection, I had the draft chapters in terms of the methodology, introduction, literature review and so on. So, when I came here it gave me time to analyze my data. When you’re doing mixed methods research you need time to reflect on the results, you need time to reflect on what it’s really telling you. You need time to really do a good job integrating findings because that is going to be key in really writing a good mixed methods dissertation.
What would you tell your colleagues about becoming a visiting scholar or going to one of the workshops?
Set your goals. Know what you are coming to accomplish and have some timelines. Look at your research and identify areas where you will need guidance. Come prepared to work!
We loved having you, Tashane. Best of luck with your dissertation and future career!
Co-Director, Dr. Mike D. Fetters, teaching Mixed Methods Research in China on a Fulbright Scholarship
Dr. Fetters just finished teaching a mixed methods research design workshop at the Language Institute of Thammasat University, Bangkok, Thailand on 10/22/16. Sponsored by the Fulbright Asia Regional supplemental program as a component of Dr. Fetters Fulbright semester at Peking University of Health Sciences Center, the event was hosted by Professor Kittitouch Soontornwipast and Director of the Language Institute, Professor Pornsiri Singhapreecha. Most of the roughly 30 participants were PhD candidates or Institute Faculty working on Teaching English as a Foreign language-mixed methods research projects. Participants worked on developing their background, rationale and mixed methods questions, qualitative and quantitative data sources tables, a figure of their mixed methods research design and an implementation matrix that was followed by a poster session of participants presenting their designed projects.
Dr. Timothy Guetterman featured in the University of Michigan Department of Family Medicine News
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