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Epidemiological Methods in Life Course Research$
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Andrew Pickles, Barbara Maughan, and Michael Wadsworth

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780198528487

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198528487.001.0001

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The life course plot in life course analysis

The life course plot in life course analysis

(p.137) Chapter 6 The life course plot in life course analysis
Epidemiological Methods in Life Course Research

Tim Cole

Oxford University Press

This chapter considers the life course in the context of an outcome in later life as related to early growth status, where each subject is assumed to have been measured as a child at two or more pre-specified ages. The analysis is by multiple regression, with the outcome as the dependent variable and the measurements at each age (expressed as z-scores) as the independent variables. This analysis highlights measurements at any particular age(s) that are predictive of outcome (size effects), and simultaneously flags the predictive value of changes in the measurement over different time intervals (i.e., growth effects). Size and growth are intimately related, and the life course plot helps to interpret the results.

Keywords:   multiple regression, life course plots, interactions, functional data analysis, size and growth

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