Attention to Individuals: Mixed Methods for N-of-1 Health Care Interventions

Peter H. Van Ness, Terrence E. Murphy, Ather Ali

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


In several ways, randomized controlled trials represent a high standard of rigor in clinical biomedical research. Randomized controlled trials fail, however, to yield knowledge applicable to specific individuals. This article presents a methodological rationale for a mixed methods approach to n-of-1 clinical studies that attends to the preferences and concerns of individuals while attaining high standards of qualitative and quantitative rigor. An illustrative research design involving a hypothetical music therapy intervention for a quality of life outcome is examined in some detail and a concluding argument is made that the proposed mixed methods approach is especially appropriate for early-stage research interventions intended to generate explanatory hypotheses.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)342-354
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Mixed Methods Research
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 1 2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Education
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Statistics, Probability and Uncertainty


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