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Mental health problems are serious health concerns that affect women across diverse settings internationally. Knowledge of this population historically has been informed by research using a positivist approach. This article is a critical examination of contemporary paradigms for research related to women's mental health. We begin the article with an introduction to women's mental health, followed by an overview of the postpositivist, critical theory, and constructivist paradigms. We then present a critical examination of the benefits and limitations of these paradigms in relation to the study of women's mental health. We conclude with implications for research and practice.




Doucet, S. A., Letourneau, N. L., & Stoppard, J. M. (2010). Contemporary paradigms for research related to women’s mental health. Health Care for Women International, 31(4), 296–312. https://doi.org/10.1080/07399330903518509

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