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PhD Students Attend Mixed Methods Research Conference in Leeds, UK

August 1, 2012

“The Mixed Method International Conference held annually in England is unlike any other research conference I have attended in that the atmosphere is one of creativity that welcomes innovative thinking in research. That type of atmosphere, creativity and energy is what attracted me to this conference six years ago when I was the first art therapist to ever present there. These qualities are what also makes it an excellent venue for student learning” Nancy Gerber, PhD, said of the Mixed Methods Research Conference that’s held at the University of Leeds in Leeds, UK each year.

This year, PhD candidates Carol Ann Blank and Donna Radl accompanied Gerber at the four-day conference, which was filled with thirty-minute presentations on mixed methods research approaches by professionals from other fields. Mixed methods approaches to research use “both quantitative and qualitative paradigms, designs, typologies and analyses together in order to yield more comprehensive results that both measure and describe,” Gerber explained.

Student Carol Ann Blank said that “mixed methods research is both a philosophical and methodological approach to research inquiry that views data gathering and interpretation from many different viewpoints using quantitative and qualitative measures. As a music therapist, I find this approach aligns with how I see research informing my clinical work specifically and the growth of the profession generally.”

“This inspirational trip was rewarding and beneficial as it afforded me the experience to learn about innovative mixed methods research at a very prestigious conference. I learned a tremendous amount about research methods while meeting the leaders of mixed methods research from around the world. The diversity was enriching!” shared student Donna Radl.

The trip was funded in part by the Office of International Programs, an Office of International Travel grant that Gerber received to present “Creating Images of the Mind: Qualitative and Quantitative Dimensions,” and by the Sheller Family Foundation.