Growth Models: A Practical Guide

Sarah O. Meadows Center for Research on Child Wellbeing Princeton University October 15, 2007
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Outline of Presentation

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What are growth models? Nuts and Bolts Hands-On Example Additional Issues

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Part I: What is a Growth Model?

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What is a Growth Model?

A way to assess individual stability and change, both growth and decay, over time. A two-level, hierarchical model that that models (1) within individual change over time and (2) between individual differences in patterns of growth.
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.        Growth Models Trajectory Models Growth Curve Models Latent GM Latent TM Latent GCM Hierarchical Models     Random Intercept Models Random Coefficient Models Random Intercept/Random Slope Models Variance Component Models 5 .A Rose by Any Other Name . .

Why Latent?    Because we assume that whatever process that is underlying the thing we are modeling (or the behavior we observe) is actually unobserved. This language grew out of structural equation modeling (SEM). 6 . or latent. The characteristics we observe are a manifestation of this latent trajectory.

– You may also believe that not everyone follows the same path.Why use GM’s?  Everyone else is doing it! – – – – – Education Criminology Psychology Sociology Public Health  You have longitudinal data and are interested in change over time. – You may want to explain those changes. 7 .

Journal of Marriage and Family. “Individual Differences in the Onset of Tense Marking: A Growth Model Example. “Parental Divorce and Child Mental Health Trajectories. 2006. Journal of Health and Social Behavior. & Caldwell.How Have Others Used GMs?       “Growth Trajectories of Sexual Risk Behavior in Adolescence and Young Adulthood. “Ten-Year Stability of Depressive Personality Disorder in Depressed Outpatients.” Hadley & Colt. . 2006. Williams. The Journals of Gerontology. Language. Klein. 2005. & Dougherty. The American Journal of Psychiatry. 2006.” Fergus. American Journal of Public Health. & Powers.” 8 Strohschein. 2006. Zimmerman. 2007. Journal of Speech. and Hearing Research.” Umberson.” Laptook. “You Make Me Sick: Marital Quality and Health Over the Life Course. “Verbal Learning and Everyday Functioning in Dementia: An Application of Latent Variable Growth Curve Modeling.” Mast & Allaire.

Forthcoming. resource model). crisis model) or long-term impacts on health (i. American Sociological Review. & Brooks-Gunn. McLanahan.” Meadows.. We wanted to know whether changes in family structure.A Detailed Example   “Stability and Change in Family Structure and Maternal Health Trajectories.e. had short-term impacts on health (i. 9 .e. including transitions into and out of coresidential relationships..

Two measures of family structure change: – Level 1: Time-Varying – Level 2: Time-Invariant 10 .)   Trajectories of maternal self-rated health and mental health problems from one year after birth to five years after birth.Example (cont.

resulted in short-term declines in physical health and short-term increases in mental health problems.Example (cont. as well as mothers who made transitions. – Little support for the resource model. especially exits from marriages.)  Results: – Transitions. 11 . no growing gap in well-being between mothers who remained stably married and those remained stably single.

Figure 1. Mothers’ Mental Health Trajectories 12 .

Mothers’ Household Income Trajectories 13 .Figure 2.

Figure 3. Fathers’ Mental Health Trajectories 14 .

Fathers’ Earnings Trajectories 15 .Figure 4.

Part II: Nuts and Bolts 16 .

2004)   SEM Multilevel Models (HLM) 17 .Where Did GM’s Come From?   Time Series Models (Autoregressive) Repeated Measures ANOVA – (Duncan & Duncan.

Hierarchical Models  Traditional: – Level 1: Students – Level 2: Schools  Growth Models (a type of HM): – Level 1: Repeated Observations – Level 2: Individuals 18 .

Unconditional Model  Level 1: Within Individual yit = αi + βit + εit  Level 2: Between Individual αi = α 0 + u i βi = β0 + vi 19 .

A Latent Trajectory Latent Depression Trajectory Depressive Symptoms β α Time 20 .

. βkxik + vi 21 . . . αkxik + ui βi = β0 + β1xi1 + β2xi2 + .Time-Invariant Covariates  Level 1: Within Individual yit = αi + βit + εit  Level 2: Between Individual αi = α0 + α1xi1 + α2xi2 + . .

. αi = α0 + α1xi1 + α2xi2 + .Time-Varying Variables  Level 1: Within Individual yit = αi + βit + γt wit + εit  Level 2: Between Individual Time-varying effect. αkxik + ui βi = β0 + β1xi1 + β2xi2 + . . βkxik + vi 22 . . .

intercept and slope) Random: Variance of the latent trajectory parameters (i. indicates individual heterogeneity around population means) 23 .. Random   Fixed: Means of the latent trajectory parameters (i..e.e.Fixed vs.

Part III: An Example 24 .

Software     MPlus – SEM based HLM – Hierarchical Modeling SAS – Proc Traj STATA 25 .

where d is the degree of the polynomial.. Convert data to . Horizontal data file (i. one row).dat file. one person. – Remember the order of the variables!! 26 .Data Requirements     Three observations For polynomial curves you need d + 2 repeated measures.e.

how is your health?” – Excellent (5) – Very Good (4) – Good (3) – Fair (2) – Poor (1)  Repeated measures one. 27 . three. and five years after birth.Self-Rated Health   Mothers in FFCWS “In general.

Setting the Trajectory Intercept 1 1 1 0 2 Slope 4 SRH 1 SRH 3 SRH 5 28 .

Models  Unconditional – Model Fit  Conditional – Time-Invariant Covariates MPlus Graphs  Selection and Causation  – Time-Varying Covariates 29 .

05 is good. TLI (Tucker Lewis Index. 30 . above . CFI (Comparative Fit Index) – Range: 0 – 1.10 is bad.  RMSEA (Root Mean Square Error of Approximation) – Under .Model Fit    Chi-Square – Not Significant. 1 is best. but almost always is. 1 is best. or NNFI) – Range: 0 – 1.

smoking) Baseline Marital Status 31 .Time-Invariant Covariates        Age at Baseline Education Race Biological Parents Mental Health Problem Lived with both Bio Parents at Age 15 Number of Previous Relationships Baseline SRH     Considered an Abortion Positive Marriage Attitude Prenatal Variables (medical care. drug and alcohol use.

Time-Invariant Covariates α Intercept 1 1 1 0 β Slope 4 2 SRH 1 SRH 3 SRH 5 32 .

Figure 5. 33 . Mothers’ Self-Rated Health Trajectories.

 Slope – Third factor is responsible for where people go.Selection Issues  Intercept – Third factor is responsible for where people start. 34 .

Time-Varying Covariate   Mental Health Problems Range 0-3 – Includes CIDI Major depressive episode. and drug use. – All occurred in the past 12-months. 35 . binge drinking.

Intercept 1 1 1 0 Slope 4 2 SRH 1 SRH 3 SRH 5 MH 1 MH 3 MH 5 36 .

Part IV: Additional Issues 37 .

 Multi-Process – Models more than one trajectory.Multi-Models  Multi-Group – Growth process may vary for each group. 38 .

Measurement    Latent Measures (Multiple Indicators) Dichotomous/Categorical Variables Count Variables – ZIP Models  Skewness – Transform Variable – Semi-Continuous Growth Model 39 .

 Missing Data – Drop Cases (default) – Multiple Imputation – Full Information Maximum Likelihood (FIML)  Analysis: MISSING 40 .Age-Based Growth Model  Synthetic cohort – Sample members may contribute different amounts of information at different times.

Mixture Models   Latent Class Models (LCM/LCA) – Group membership not known. Latent Class Growth Models (LCGM/LCGA) – Group membership not known and is based on trajectory patterns. 41 .  Growth Mixture Models (GMM) – Group membership is not known and is based on trajectory patterns. – No variation is allowed within latent classes. – Allows for variation within latent classes.

edu 42 .Contact Info  smeadows@princeton.