Only time will tell: Conducting longitudinal research of careers


Dobrow, S. R. & Weisman, H., “Only time will tell: Conducting longitudinal research of careers.” 2021. In Jennifer Tosti-Kharas and Wendy Murphy (Eds.), Handbook for Research Methods in Careers. Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar Publishing.


Longitudinal research is key to the advancement of our understanding of careers, yet it is also a particularly challenging endeavor for scholars. In this chapter, we draw on our experiences as longitudinal researchers to discuss the challenges, and merits, of conducting longitudinal research on careers. We begin by defining what longitudinal research is, and is not. We then describe the contributions that longitudinal research can make to the careers literature, above and beyond other research designs like cross-sectional studies. We conclude by offering a “Top 10″ list of practical tips for conducting and publishing longitudinal research on careers. Throughout this chapter, we provide examples of reviewers’ comments on our own longitudinal research and discuss the strategies that we used to address these comments, so that other scholars may benefit from our acquired knowledge. As an end goal, we hope that this chapter stimulates longitudinal research on careers, and helps scholars weather its challenges to truly reap its upsides.
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