cohort analysis


cohort analysis
cohort, cohort analysis
The term cohort originally referred to a Roman military unit, but it is now used to identify any group of people with a time-specific common experience, such as graduating from school in the same year, or cohorts defined by time of marriage or widowhood. Cohort analysis refers to any study in which there are measures of some characteristics of one or more cohorts at regular intervals after the defining event.
Cohort analysis as a method of research was developed by demographers and applied primarily to the study of fertility. The most common type of cohort analysis uses age-groups (birth cohorts), for example five- or ten-year age-bands, to study mortality rates. The individuals within the bands move through the ageing process together as a cohort, and often become identified as a distinct group, such as the ‘Baby-Boomers’ or ‘Ageing-Hippies’. This approach is especially common in secondary analysis , as age is a commonly recorded item of information in population census data-sets, and in data from registers and administrative records. Cohort analysis can also be applied to repeated cross-sectional survey data-sets, where samples are large enough to distinguish a number of cohorts defined by (for example) age, or year of first childbirth. Proxy cohort data or analysis is achieved by tracking the characteristics of ten-year age-groups through successive decennial population censuses or equivalent large data-sets.
The critical problem of cohort analysis is to differentiate age, cohort, and period effects. Age effects are associated with growing older; cohort effects are common to people born at the same time; period effects are due to the shared experience of particular historical events-for example the Second World War. Unfortunately there is no simple way of disentangling these. This is important substantively: because the effects are confounded, different interpretations of change are usually possible (for example, observed cultural, political, or social changes may be due to cohort effects or ageing), and conclusions have to be correspondingly tentative. When informed by sound theory, however, cohort analysis is a powerful analytic technique (see, ‘Career Opportunities in the Federal Republic of Germany: A Dynamic Approach to Study Life Course, Cohort and Period Effects’, European Sociological Review, 1986).

Dictionary of sociology. 2013.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • cohort analysis — ▪ demography       method used in studies to describe an aggregate of individuals having in common a significant event in their life histories, such as year of birth (birth cohort) or year of marriage (marriage cohort). The concept of cohort is… …   Universalium

  • cohort analysis — virtual population analysis (an algorithm for computing historical fishing mortality rates and stock sizes by age or length, based on data on catches, natural mortality, and certain assumptions about mortality for the last year and last age group …   Dictionary of ichthyology

  • cohort analysis — A technique for estimating the magnitude of fishing mortality and the number of fish at each age in a stock …   Fisheries — dictionary

  • cohort analysis — A method used in employment discrimination suits to test for race discrimination whereby all employees who start together at the same level are surveyed over the course of an observation period and their comparative progress in salary and… …   Black's law dictionary

  • age-cohort analysis — the proportion of each age group participating in an activity currently used to predict the future sizes of each age group …   Dictionary of ichthyology

  • cohort — cohort, cohort analysis The term cohort originally referred to a Roman military unit, but it is now used to identify any group of people with a time specific common experience, such as graduating from school in the same year, or cohorts defined… …   Dictionary of sociology

  • Cohort study — For other senses of this word, see cohort (disambiguation). A cohort study or panel study is a form of longitudinal study (a type of observational study) used in medicine, social science, actuarial science, and ecology. It is an analysis of risk… …   Wikipedia

  • virtual population analysis — A mathematical modelling technique used in stock assessment, whereby the number of fish in each cohort is estimated from numbers in the next oldest or next youngest age group, adjusted for the changes due to fishing and natural mortality; see… …   Fisheries — dictionary

  • virtual population analysis — an algorithm for computing historical fishing mortality rates and stock sizes by age or length, based on data on catches, natural mortality, and certain assumptions about mortality for the last year and last age group. Essentially reconstructs… …   Dictionary of ichthyology

  • Medical analysis of circumcision — Numerous medical studies have examined the effects of male circumcision with mixed opinions regarding the benefits and risks of the procedure. Opponents of circumcision say it is medically unnecessary, is unethical when performed on newborns, is… …   Wikipedia


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.