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Main Types of Longitudial Studies

In the field of social science and medicine, researchers often use the longitudinal observational study to reach a specific outcome. This type of research usually observes a specific number of people within a period of time where they are constantly monitored. This method, along with other types of longitudinal studies, usually produces plenty of information. However, the analysis part is what takes up most of the time of the researchers. If you don’t have the time to go through all the data or if your time is running out, you need to look for an expert analyst to go over the data that you have gathered.

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Different Types of Longitudinal Studies

There are three types of longitudinal research and these are:

  • Cohort study is a type of longitudinal study wherein a specific population is studied several times. However, it focuses on a different aspect. An example of this would a group of graduates from 1999 will be observed about their attitudes about paraprofessionals who are working in libraries. After a certain time has passed, another group of graduates of the year 1999 will be observed and interviewed if there are any changes.
  • Trend study pertains to the study of a specific group who are studied and scrutinized several times. Although the samples taken are within a set population, the people that make up the group may not be the same. What’s more, a group of researchers can use the same population for their studies and observe any trend among the data they have gathered.
  • Panel study lets the researcher determine any changes that occur within the population because they are using the same people all the time. Those who are included within the sample population will be contacted every year to determine if there are any changes in their behavior. Although this type of longitudinal study yields plenty of data, there are some subjects who drop out of the study not to mention the time and cost of the research.

Advantage of Longitudinal Study

One advantage of conducting a longitudinal study design is that its validity is high since people tend to forget past events which the researcher can use to pick up changes in the long run.

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