longitudinal study

(redirected from diachronic study)
Also found in: Medical.

longitudinal study

[‚län·jə‚tüd·ən·əl ′stəd·ē]
(psychology)
The study of a group of individuals at regular intervals over a relatively long period of time.

longitudinal study

an investigation which involves making observations of the same group at sequential time intervals. Thus, a longitudinal study of a COHORT of children may be made to assess, for example, the effect of social class on school achievement (see BIRTH COHORT STUDY). Longitudinal studies are used by the National Children's Bureau to document various aspects of children's development in the UK. However, longitudinal studies are not only appropriate for studying human development or change, they may also be used to observe change over time within organizations.

The advantage of longitudinal studies compared with CROSS-SECTIONAL STUDIES is that the causal factor involved in a sequence of changes an be directly explored using data collected before and after changes (e.g. analysis of the effect of changes in the school curriculum). The main disadvantages are the greater expense of repeated study, the possible HAWTHORNE EFFECT of repeated studies and the influence of other changes which may be occurring concurrently (e.g. changes in the school curriculum may take place at the same time as changes in the resourcing of educational services). Compare PANEL STUDY.

References in periodicals archive ?
The 22 selected papers are arranged in sections on plenary papers, symposia, diachronic study, Old and Middle English, Middle and Modern English, and American English.
Climate data provide surprising explanatory power to the diachronic study of Recuay settlement patterns, for it appears that population centres moved to higher ground during warmer and wetter periods, and relocated to lower elevations during times of colder and dryer conditions.
Three of the essays consider the diachronic study of texts, with an eye not necessarily on the original version but on an altered version.
The inevitable drawbacks of such an ambitious diachronic study are obvious, but Lennon anticipates some by including a section of synchronic readings.
Lombardi's diachronic study moves from the preistoria of the feminist movement to late 20th-century backlash against progress attained by that movement.
9:15 FAUNAL EXPLOITATION AT THE DIAMONDHEAD SITE (22HA550): A DIACHRONIC STUDY OF SUBSISTENCE STRATEGIES AT A GULF COAST SHELL MIDDEN
From first to last Muller is openly opposed to the notion that the faults and inconsistencies running through the Nibelungenlied are only fit for diachronic study as clues to the evolutionary history of the story material.
She begins with specific problems and questions pertinent to the study of ancient Israel from a feminist perspective, then gives a brief diachronic study of what can be known of ancient Israelite women.
Published during a period of relative German economic and social malaise in which Germans are once again comparing their own nation to the American model and seeking both to imitate and improve on it, Schmidt's monograph is an excellent synchronic and diachronic study of mentalities characterized by long duration.
Moisala divides the book into five sections: "Theoretical Deduction," "The Diachronic Study Mode," "The Synchronic Study Mode," "Musical Analysis," and "Material-Based Approaches.
However, a diachronic study would be needed to establish precise dimensions and annual growth rates.