Cologne, Germany

Designing and Implementation of Longitudinal Surveys

online course
when 9 August 2021 - 13 August 2021
language English
duration 1 week
credits 4 EC
fee EUR 400

The course will provide an overview of those aspects of survey design, implementation, and analysis that are unique to longitudinal surveys or that have distinct features in the longitudinal context. The course will specifically cover:
- a review of the advantages and limitations of longitudinal surveys and an outline of some of the uses to which longitudinal surveys are put;
- key aspects of longitudinal survey design such as the sampling design, interval between waves, and data collection modes;
- important aspects of designing a questionnaire and measurement for a longitudinal study, particularly for capturing micro-level change;
- the impact of non-response and attrition in a panel, and adjustments, such as weighting and imputation given that missing data patterns differ between waves;
- an introduction to important analysis considerations and methods when using a longitudinal survey design.

Course leader

Dr. Tarek Al Baghal is a research fellow at the Institute of Social and Economic Research of the University of Essex, UK.
Dr. Alexandru Cernat is a lecturer in Social Statistics at the University of Manchester, UK.

Target group

Participants will find the course useful if they
- are interested in the uses and importance of longitudinal surveys;
- are involved in planning or conducting a longitudinal survey;
- are interested in aspects of longitudinal data collection;
- are interested in the processes involved in measurement of phenomena over time;
- they want to use appropriate methods to analyze longitudinal data.

Participants should have:
- basic knowledge of survey methodology from a cross-sectional perspective, in particular with respect to survey design, instrument development, and survey implementation;
- basic knowledge of statistics and statistical modeling (i.e. regression) and of a statistical software (Stata or R).
This course takes place in a computer lab. GESIS will provide participants with access to the statistical software packages used in the course (i.e. Stata, R) and various other statistical software packages (e.g. SPSS, Mplus).

Course aim

By the end of the course participants will
- be familiar with the central design issues of longitudinal surveys;
- understand different strategies on how to collect longitudinal data;
- be able to design questions that meet research objectives for longitudinal surveys and minimize error;
- be able to identify and implement features that should help to prevent panel attrition;
- be able to study the nature of non-response and attrition in a longitudinal survey;
- generally understand the methods used in weighting and imputation in a panel survey.

Credits info

4 EC
- Certificate of attendance issued upon completion.
Optional bookings:
- 4 ECTS points via the University of Mannheim for regular attendance and satisfactory work on daily assignments and for submitting a paper/report of about 5000 words to the lecturer(s) up to 4 weeks after the end of the summer school (EUR 50).

Fee info

EUR 400: Student/PhD student rate.
EUR 600: Academic/non-profit rate.
The rates include the tuition fee and the course materials.


10 scholarships for participation are available from the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD).