Up-to-Date Cross-Sectional Information in Longitudinal Designs
A comparison is often made between longitudinal and cross-secttional studies. Many differences are found on practical points such as the duration of the study, costs, sampling, data-management, etc. The essential differences in the two are: — Cross-sectional studies are designed to obtain an inventory of the surveyed population. Age differences may not be interpreted as growth. Longitudinal designs are specially used to study individual growth and developmental models. — Cross-sectional studies may give up-to-date information about the population. As a rule, longitudinal studies are only partly up-to-date: the initial data are per se out-of-date.
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