Answered By: Will Meredith
Last Updated: Apr 07, 2022     Views: 20

Finding articles according to the authors' paradigmatic lens requires some thought and creativity. Because articles are not organized or tagged according to the paradigms used by authors, there is no results filter to identify all the articles with a specific frame. Instead, you need to use keyword searching.

You can try adding the name of the paradigm to your keyword search (e.g., ‘positivist’, ‘positivism’, ‘constructivist’, ‘constructivism’), but authors do not necessarily identify the paradigm they are using and you can easily overlook articles that do not explicitly mention your chosen paradigm. So looking for one or more research method that might align with a given paradigm is a useful alternative approach. For example, quantitative research methods fall under the positivist paradigm, so you could try adding keywords such as ‘survey’, ‘questionnaire’, or ‘experiment’ to your search string. Or if you were looking for articles with a constructivist lens, you might try using keywords such as ‘ethnography’ or ‘ethnographic’, or ‘participatory action research.’

Here are a couple of sample search strings to demonstrate more clearly how you could approach this search. If you were looking for materials related to disaster management and your paradigm is constructivism you could try a search for:

  • “disaster management” AND (constructivist OR constructivism)

or you could focus on specific research methods and try something like:

  • “disaster management” AND (ethnography OR ethnographic OR “participatory action research”)

If you are wondering about this syntax – the brackets, ANDs, and ORs, here is an FAQ we have to explain it.

If you want to think more about the different paradigms you have identified, what they mean and what methods might align, you could try searching Sage Research Methods.  You can get to ‘Sage Research Methods’ from the ‘Access the A-Z database list’ link on our homepage under the letter ‘S’.

Alternatively, these might help:

Durdella, N. (2019). Framing a dissertation study through a research tradition. In Qualitative dissertation methodology (pp. 87-144). SAGE Publications, Inc, LINK

Mertens, D. M. (2019). 'An Introduction to Research', in Research and evaluation in education and psychology: Integrating diversity with quantitative, qualitative, and mixed methods. Sage publications. LINK


Still have questions? Ask us!

Contact Us

Toll free in North America (8:30 AM-8:30 PM, Pacific Time): 1-800-788-8028 and ask to be put through to the Library

Related Topics