Longitudinal study

from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Categories of patient-oriented studies
A: Age effect (longitudinal section),
K: Cohort effect ,
Period effect

A longitudinal study ( follow-up study , longitudinal study , longitudinal investigation , longitudinal survey ) is a research design of empirical research to investigate social and personal conversion processes. In a longitudinal study, unlike a cross-sectional study, the same empirical study is carried out at several points in time and the results of the individual investigation waves are compared. There are both prospective and retrospective longitudinal studies, whereby this term usually refers to prospective (forward-looking) studies.

Forms of longitudinal studies

A distinction is made between longitudinal studies in trend studies (also: replicative survey) and panel studies . Also cohort studies are counted as longitudinal studies are being usually meant prospective cohort studies.

In a trend study , the same study is carried out at several points in time, each with different samples . With the help of trend studies, it is possible to understand changes at the aggregate level (i.e. at the level of the entire sample, which in turn is supposed to represent the population). However, it is not possible to derive changes at the individual level from trend data. If this is done anyway, one speaks of a so-called ecological fallacy .

In contrast to the trend study carried out at the panel study (also panel survey , panel survey ) collecting a plurality of times with the same sample. In this way, intra-individual changes can also be recorded (so-called internal fluctuation). As with trend design, the aggregated values ​​also enable conclusions to be drawn about inter- individual , i.e. H. Changes affecting the entire sample (so-called net changes).

Assessment and problems

A panel study is more informative than a trend study: As already mentioned above, it is not possible to derive changes at the individual level from trend data. With the panel design, however, intra-individual changes can also be recorded.

The two forms of longitudinal studies each have to deal with different problems: In a trend study, the samples of the individual survey waves must be comparable. For example, if the proportions of different population groups in the individual waves are different, the results can be significantly falsified.

This risk does not exist in a panel study because the same sample is always used. However, the problem of panel mortality does arise : This includes mortality, relocations, refusals and similar failures from the panel, which have to be compensated by substitutes. Often the failures are not random but systematic, that is, the panel mortality of certain population or risk groups is higher than that of others.

In order to keep the panel mortality as low as possible, it is necessary to maintain the panel regularly, i. In other words, the address file has to be updated and failures to be compensated for by suitable substitutes. Since this process is very complex, a panel study is more expensive than a trend study. A panel study can also be distorted by the fact that the measuring instrument (questionnaire) is out of date due to socio-cultural change. Another source of error are so-called panel effects, such as an increased awareness of the problem through participation in the panel.

Well-known studies

See also


  • CF Belanger, CH Hennekens, B. Rosner, FE Speizer : The Nurses' Health Study. In: Am J Nurs. 78, 1978, pp. 1039-1040. PMID 248266 .
  • Andreas Diekmann: Empirical Social Research - Fundamentals, Methods, Applications. Rowohlt, Hamburg 2006.
  • W. Schneider: Development from childhood to adulthood: Findings of the Munich longitudinal study LOGIK . Beltz Psychologie Verlags Union, 2008, ISBN 978-3-621-27605-4 .
  • R. Schnell, PB Hill, E. Esser: Methods of empirical social research. Oldenbourg, Munich 2005.
  • Karl F. Schumann: Discussion - Are work biography and delinquency linked? - Clarifications through resume research. In: MschrKrim . 87th year, issue 3/4, 2004, pp. 222–243.

Individual evidence

  1. CM Seiler: Patient-Oriented Research in Surgery . In: Manfred Georg Krukemeyer, Hans-Ullrich Spiegel (Hrsg.): Surgical research . Georg Thieme Verlag, Stuttgart 2005, ISBN 978-3-13-133661-3 , p. 205–212 ( limited preview in Google Book search).
  2. ^ Gaus Wilhelm, Muche Rainer: Medical statistics: Applied biometrics for doctors and health professions . Schattauer Verlag, 2017, ISBN 978-3-7945-3241-4 , pp. 37 ( limited preview in Google Book search).
  3. a b Jürgen Bortz, Nicola Döring: Research methods and evaluation for human and social scientists: Limited special edition . Springer-Verlag, 2007, ISBN 978-3-540-33306-7 , pp. 732 ( limited preview in Google Book search).
  4. ^ A b Uwe Tewes, Klaus Wildgrube: Psychology Lexicon . Walter de Gruyter GmbH & Co KG, 2016, ISBN 978-3-486-80174-3 , p. 436 ( limited preview in Google Book search).
  5. ^ Annette Fink, Claudia Tritschler: Psychotherapy exam questions: Collection of questions with commented answers - more than 50 new questions . Springer-Verlag, 2013, ISBN 978-3-642-34722-1 , pp. 138 ( limited preview in Google Book search).
  6. ^ Georg Rudinger, Katharina Olejniczak, Thomas Krüger: Research and Advice - The Center for Evaluation and Methods:. E-BOOK . Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 2009, ISBN 978-3-86234-088-0 , p. 285 ( limited preview in Google Book search).
  7. ^ Nicola Döring, Jürgen Bortz: Research methods and evaluation in the social and human sciences . Springer-Verlag, 2015, ISBN 978-3-642-41089-5 , pp. 213 ( limited preview in Google Book search).
  8. Regina Rettenbach, Claudia Christ: Psychotherapy exam: compact course to prepare for the license to practice medicine test according to the Psychotherapists Act with commentary on the IMPP catalog of subjects . Schattauer Verlag, 2016, ISBN 978-3-7945-3186-8 ( google.de [accessed September 29, 2018]).
  9. dza.de
  10. psychologie.uni-heidelberg.de
  11. Bremen longitudinal study 1: Vocational training and work  ( page no longer available , search in web archivesInfo: The link was automatically marked as defective. Please check the link according to the instructions and then remove this notice.@1@ 2Template: Toter Link / prisonportal.informatik.uni-bremen.de  
  12. Generations and Gender Survey. ( Memento from July 23, 2012 in the web archive archive.today ) at: www.bib-demografie.de
  13. bls.gov
  14. ssc.wisc.edu
  15. nkps.nl
  16. ^ Longitudinal Study of Generations. ( Memento from October 19, 2011 in the web archive archive.today ) on: usc.edu
  17. isr.umich.edu
  18. share-project.org
  19. Study (PDF, 3 MB)
  20. gesis.org
  21. ^ Rostock longitudinal study. In: Development and social relationships, prevention and social psychiatry: WG neighborhood, social inequality and mental disorders. (accessed on July 1, 2020)