Cross sectional studies are the most popular type of descriptive studies.
In spite of these problems, cross sectional studies are highly beneficial in determining prevalence and enumerating risk factors for understanding disease etiology and generating hypotheses.
In this three-state study, the authors estimate the magnitudes of achievement gaps between English learner (EL) students and their non-EL peers, while avoiding typical caveats in cross sectional studies
. The authors further compare the observed achievement gaps across three distinct dimensions (content areas, grades, and states) and report patterns of EL and non-EL achievement gaps within and across states.