Chapter 8: Surveys

Read this article and then answer the following questions:

Chan, C. and Wang, W. (2012) ‘Chinese parental perceptions of weight and associated health risks of young children’, Journal of Health Psychology, 18(6): 837–47.

This article looks at a survey of parents and other caregivers of children attending pre-school provision in Hong Kong.

  • What was the aim of the research?
  • Is the survey primarily descriptive or analytical?
  • Is a longitudinal or cross-sectional design used?
  • What was the target population for this research project?
  • How was the sample obtained and what was the total number of participants?
  • Describe the methods used to collect data.
  • Why do the authors describe this research as ‘mixed methods research’ and why do you think this approach was adopted?
  • Why may some researchers consider that mixing methodologies is inappropriate? (You may find Chapters 4 and 5 of Research Methods in Early Childhood helpful.)
  • Summarize the overall findings of the project and consider the implications for practice.

Read this article and then answer the following questions:

Vigeh, M., Yokoyama, K., Matsukawa, T., Shinohara, A. and Ohtani, K. (2014) ‘Low level prenatal blood lead adversely affects early childhood mental development’, Journal of Child Neurology, 29(10): 1305–11.

This study looks at the relationship between the levels of lead in expectant mothers’ blood and the cognitive development of their children. It is a longitudinal prospective survey which followed the children up to the age of 36 months old. The study was conducted in Tehran.

Findings indicated that there was a correlation between the levels of lead in the expectant mothers’ blood and cognitive development in the children. The higher the lead level in the mothers’ blood, the lower the cognitive functioning of the children.

  • This is a correlational study. Can one conclude that high levels of lead in the mothers’ blood caused the observation that their children had lower than expected scores on tests of cognitive development?
  • What other factors may have had an effect?