Methodology & Triangulation

3.0.1 Validity and Reliability

This section will address issues on validity where the researcher will discuss different types of triangulations and their application to the design.

Triangulation can be defined as the approach used in the investigation of research with the aim of increasing confidence in the subsequent findings. A greater part of work in social research is based on the use of a single research method. For this reason limitations associated with such an approach are likely to be encountered from the specific application of it. Triangulation in this case provides views that enhance confidence of the researcher Triangulation is one of the underlying principles for multi method research. This term is drawn from surveys where it underscores the application of series of triangles in mapping out a given area (Bryman, 2006; Patton, 2002).

In the 1970, Denzin worked on the idea of triangulation and his research surpassed the association triangulation has with research methods and designs. The following are the five types of triangulation namely:

  1. Data triangulation – this form of design involves collection of data by use of several sampling strategies. This ensures that data is collected at different times and social periods as well as across a diverse group of people (Burr, 1998).
  2. Investigator triangulation – this refers to the use of several researches in the field of collecting and interpreting data.
  3. Theoretical triangulation – this is the use of more than one theoretical position in interpreting data.
  4. Methodological triangulation – this involves gathering of data through use of more than one method (Thurmond, 2001).

This current project applied both data and methodological triangulation. Therefore, the application of the latter method was because the researcher relied upon secondary sources but then provided more data through primary data collection method. It is also important to indicate that the study applied some techniques under theoretical triangulation in the sense in which there was use of several theorizations in the interpretation of data.

Therefore, use of data triangulation may be traced by the extent to which the researcher developed a design that used a cross section of sources in a bid to enhance the validity of the study. Additionally, the researcher applied techniques of methodological triangulation although this did not involve multiple usages of qualitative/quantitative approaches in addressing the research design for the current project. However, it was important to include in the design a number of multiple perspectives towards interpretation of a given set of data. Therefore, the researcher sought opinion of professionals which enhanced validity and reliability of the study.

All the above-stated methods of triangulation enabled the proposed design to succeed in achieving valid results thus increasing confidence of the overall research data. Moreover, the researcher was able to come up with innovative criteria for understanding the subject of the study (or phenomenon) at the same time establishing unique findings. The other benefit derived from this application included integrating theories of the overall study and establishing a better comprehension of the problem.


Bryman, A. (2006) Integrating quantitative and qualitative research: How is it done?

Qualitative Research, 6(1), 97-113

Burr, G. (1998). Contextualizing critical care family needs through triangulation: An

Australian study. Intensive & Critical Care Nursing, 14(4), 161–169

Denzin, N. K. (1970). The Research Act in Sociology. Chicago: Aldine.

Patton, M.Q. (2002). Qualitative Research and Evaluation Methods. Thousand Oaks, CA:

Sage Publications

Thurmond, V. (2001). The point of triangulation. Journal of Nursing Scholarship, 33(3),



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