Whose Reality? A Meta-Analysis of Qualitative Research in International and Comparative Education
Costa, Romina B. da
Hall, Stephanie M.
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This meta-analysis seeks to critically examine the qualitative research being published in influential journals in the field of international and comparative education in order to determine whether qualitative research has remained true to the constructivist paradigm and its theoretical and philosophical underpinnings. Decades after the heated paradigmatic debates within the field of education in the 1980’s, we seek to examine whether predictions that the constructivist paradigm would be pushed out by the call for post-positivist, quantifiable, data-driven research have come to fruition. Based on a review of all qualitative research published in the past three volumes of five influential journals in the field, we conclude that while qualitative articles are represented in approximately equal numbers as quantitative articles, there are key elements of the constructivist paradigm that are largely absent from these qualitative articles. In particular, our conclusion attempts to address the concern that qualitative researchers are failing to address the issue of researcher positionality in their qualitative work.