Journal article

Selective attrition in longitudinal studies: effective processes for Facebook tracing

Shannon K Bennetts, Jasmine Love, Naomi J Hackworth, Fiona K Mensah, Elizabeth M Westrupp, Donna Berthelsen, Penny Levickis, Clair Bennett, Jan M Nicholson

International Journal of Social Research Methodology | ROUTLEDGE JOURNALS, TAYLOR & FRANCIS LTD | Published : 2020


Participant attrition is a significant challenge for longitudinal studies, particularly those involving disadvantaged populations. We attempted to re-engage n = 990 families in a five-year follow-up of a randomised controlled trial of an early childhood parenting intervention. Tracing was attempted for n = 90/990 (9.1%) uncontactable participants. Evidence for the identification of a matching Facebook profile was classified as strong, moderate or weak. A private message was sent to those with strong evidence (n = 63/90, 70.0%), of which 32 responded, 22 agreed to participate and 19 provided data. Compared to participants engaged using traditional methods, those re-engaged through Facebook we..

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Awarded by National Health and Medical Research Council

Awarded by NHMRC Centre of Research Excellence in Child Language

Awarded by European Union

Awarded by NHMRC

Funding Acknowledgements

This work was supported by the National Health and Medical Research Council (GNT1076857) and the Victorian Government Department of Education and Training. The collaboration was supported by the NHMRC Centre of Research Excellence in Child Language (GNT1023493). SB, JL, NH, EW, CB, and JN were supported by the Roberta Holmes Transition to Contemporary Parenthood Program (Coronella sub-fund) at La Trobe University. PL was supported by the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie SklodowskaCurie grant agreement No. 705044. FM was supported by a NHMRC Career Development Fellowship (CDF 1111160) and MCRI operational support.