What Is a Cross-Sectional Study

A cross sectional study is a research that is targeted to reveal the relationship between any health related issues or other diseases with the interesting factors that occurred at a particular period of time and that which existed in a specified group within the overall population and is related to the status of health diagnosed during the time of study. The social science is the field that benefits very much with the cross sectional study, because it enables the researchers to carefully observe the changes that has taken place in social behavior, development as society, in relationships, eating habits and much more variables that has happened.

Who conducts the cross sectional study?

The cross sectional study are conducted by medical researchers, sociologists, psychologists, anthropologists, environmental studies or any other experts who would like to research, analyze and collect valuable information and real facts about a particular population in a period of time.

How do the researchers collect the important data and information?

Cross sectional study is considered as the powerful tool and the research team implements various methods of collection with which they capture the important and valuable information data from the vast sea of subjects that might be available at a single point of time. Cross sectional study are very useful for any kind of scientific research team. These researchers usually collect data that are concerned with hypothesized phenomenon along with demographic and other related issues. This factor helps them in comparing their rare discoveries with the other groups.

Differences between cross sectional study and longitudinal study

  • Longitudinal study captures information from similar pool of subjects at various points in time. Cross sectional study describes in detail the time frame when the particular study has been conducted.
  • Longitudinal study is more expensive than the cross sectional study because it requires rich resources to track the subjects over a large period of time.
  • Longitudinal study suffers from reduction or decrease in number of participants and cross sectional study does not.
  • Once all the collections have been completed they can immediately commence data analysis.

Thus if a team of researchers want to analyze and study the spread of things at a particular period of time then the best option is to do cross sectional study. Let us learn more about the cross sectional study with the following example. If you want to know more details about literate and illiterate kids then you can conduct cross sectional survey by conducting survey amongst the teachers, schools, students, parents and slums where children are mostly illiterate.  You can also do the research in a deeper manner where the details about the genders, age and the particular region of the nation that you are doing your study is also collected.