Sometimes it can be difficult to determine whether a piece of research is qualitative or quantitative. This document outlines some of the main differences between qualitative and quantitative research.
Some researchers employ a 'mixed methods' approach -- this is where both qualitative and quantitative research methods are used to gather and analyse data.
How do I assess the quality of the research studies I find?
Use a tool such as the CASP qualitative checklist
OR try “Guide to an overall critique of qualitative research report” (Polit & Beck, 2012, pp. 115-117) – Chapter 5, Nursing Library
Polit, D. F., & Beck, C. T. (2012). Nursing research : generating and assessing evidence for nursing practice (9th ed.). Philadelphia: Wolters Kluwer Health/Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.