Healthcare professionals, trainees, students, and academics from institutions in Qatar and the region convened online for a virtual workshop on mixed methods research (MMR).

MMR entails integrating quantitative and qualitative methods in the same study or series of studies and its use in healthcare research is rapidly growing. This methodology captures deep insight, meta-inferences or interpretations of both qualitative and quantitative data, to gain a more holistic understanding of the studied phenomenon that cannot be achieved with a single method. Researchers find MMR approaches valuable for investigating complex healthcare topics through integration, for example, of patients’ perceptions of their health and biomedical findings. As such, MMR helps to understand both measurable outcomes and the lived experiences of the participants.

The three-day workshop, titled ‘Getting started in mixed methods research: Training to enhance care and education in the diverse cultural context of Qatar’, began by explaining the fundamental features of the methodology. The participants then actively participated in a series of hands-on activities applying MMR’s key concepts and core skills for designing their own projects. They developed their research project designs during the workshop with guidance from leading mixed methods methodologists attending virtually. To conclude the workshop, participants made poster presentations to help crystallise their understanding of the topic, demonstrate the application of the newly learned skills and knowledge, and receive feedback from their mentors and peers.

This workshop was presented by world-renowned scholar and research methodologists Professors Michael D Fetters and John W Creswell from the US, and a select team of highly regarded international scholars of mixed methods research: Dr Chihiro Tajima from Japan, Dr Ellen Moseholm Larsen from Denmark, and Dr Sergi Fàbregues from Spain.

Course co-director Dr Amal Khidir, Associate Professor of Pediatrics and Vice-Chair of the Institutional Review Board (IRB) at WCM-Q, said:

This workshop was a real hands-on activity. The participants were virtually engaged, busy learning and applying the skills on their own projects, and refining drafts of their research proposals.

Prof Michael D Fetters, Co-editor in Chief of the Journal of Mixed Methods Research and Director of the Mixed Methods Program at the University of Michigan, said:

The participants were really enthusiastic and engaged and interacted with the faculty extremely well to learn the fundamentals of mixed methods research. The progress participants made over the three days was very evident from their poster presentations.

This workshop was sponsored by WCM-Q’s Division of Continuing Professional Development (CPD) and was a collaborative effort of CPD, the Division of Medical Education, and the Center for Cultural Competence in Health Care, part of the Institute for Population Health at WCM-Q. The scientific planning committee of this activity included members from WCM-Q, Hamad Medical Corporation and the Primary Health Care Corporation. The workshop was accredited locally by the Ministry of Public Health’s Department of Healthcare Professions – Accreditation Section and internationally by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME).

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