Mixed Methods Research in Environmental Planning

Kim Coleman
SUNY College at Plattsburgh


This is a course in mixed methods research for environmental planning majors. It builds on basic statistics and introduces qualitative research, with the ultimate goal of writing a mixed methods paper.

Course Size:
less than 15

Course Format:
Lecture only

Institution Type:
University with graduate programs, primarily masters programs

Course Context:

This is an upper level course for students majoring in environmental planning. All students have had an introduction to statistics.

Course Content:

This course covers the following concepts: ontology, epistemology, and methods, as well as the difference between each; reasons for conducting mixed methods studies; types of mixed methods studies; qualitative analysis in NVIVO; quantitative analysis in excel; and research article writing.

Course Goals:

Students should be able to evaluate the methods section of mixed methods research papers and determine the approach used and the appropriateness of that approach.1

Course Features:

This course has final assessment where students analyze existing data and draft a manuscript for a peer reviewed journal.

Course Philosophy:

My design is project-based (actually writing a paper) because I believe the best way to teach about mix methods research is to conduct mixed methods research. This works well with my small class size and upper level students.


I haven't implemented assessment; this is my first semester teaching the course.


[file Mixed Methods Research in Environmental Planning (Microsoft Word 2007 (.docx) 21kB May2 19) 'Syllabus']

References and Notes:

Various research papers as examples!