Designing a longitudinal cohort study of gambling in Alberta: Rationale, methods, and challenges

Abstract

Longitudinal research on the determinants of gambling behavior is sparse. This article briefly reviews the previous seventeen longitudinally designed studies, focusing on the methodology for each study. This is followed by a description of our ongoing longitudinal study entitled the Leisure, Lifestyle, and Lifecycle Project (LLLP). Participants for the LLLP were recruited from four locations in Alberta, Canada, including both rural and urban populations. In the LLLP most participants were recruited using random digit dialing (RDD), with 1808 participants from 5 age cohorts at baseline: 13–15, 18–20, 23–25, 43–45, and 63–65. Individuals completed telephone, computer, and face-to-face surveys at baseline, with the data collection occurring between February and October, 2006. At baseline, a wide variety of constructs were measured, including gambling behavior, substance use, psychopathology, intelligence, family environment, and internalizing and externalizing problems. Finally, the conclusions that can be drawn thus far are discussed as well as the plans for three future data collections.

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