Páramo P. y Otálvaro G. 2006. Investigación Alternativa: Por una distinción entre posturas epistemológicas y no entre métodos. Cinta moebio 25: 1-7

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Alternative Research: Towards a distinction between epistemological positions and not between methods

Pablo Páramo (pdeparamo@hotmail.com). Doctor en Psicología (USA). Departamento de Postgrados de la Facultad de Educación de la Universidad Pedagógica Nacional (Colombia).
Gabriel Otálvaro (gesoral@yahoo.com). Magíster en Educación. Universidad Pedagógica Nacional (Colombia).


Abstract

Much has been written in recent years about the distinction between qualitative and quantitative research. This paper examines this debate criticizing the idea that focusing on techniques of gathering and analysis of information rather than on the epistemological assumptions obscures the main issue on confronting research paradigms. It is accepted that data gathering methods are not necessarily linked with a particular kind of paradigm and because of that there has been a recent move in social science towards multi-method approaches which tend to reject the mandatory link with a particular paradigms in favor of the breadth of information which the use of more than one method may provide. Instead of assuming a unique alternative homogeneous paradigm as opposed to positivism the paper supports the idea of the existence of different epistemological theories. The assumptions underlying differences on research paradigms should be the essence of the discussion.

Key words: qualitative, quantitative, epistemology, research methods.

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Cinta de Moebio
Revista de EpistemologĂ­a de Ciencias Sociales
ISSN 0717-554X