Cross-sectional Study Article
Read the article by Park and colleagues (2016), titled “Sociodemographic and Behavioral Factors Associated with Added Sugars Intake among US Adults” and answer the following critique questions.
Type your response to each question using complete sentences, double spaced, 11 pt Arial font, 1 in margins, and number each question so I can easily identify your answer. Be sure to include your name at the top of every page and include page numbers.
Include a proper citation in either APA or AMA format at the end of your critique, along with citations for any other articles you reference.
1. What is the purpose of the study described in this article?
a. The purpose is very rarely “to inform the audience.” Most will be “to determine factors,” “to display a relationship between,” or something of that nature. Articles are certainly written to inform, but most articles written about studies are primarily to report on an investigation of certain features of the data.
2. What type of study design was used in this article?
a. This will be some kind of study that we cover in this class. Cross-sectional, ecological, cohort, case-control, experimental, randomized controlled trial, etc. Most of the investigators will tell you in the abstract what kind of study design was used.
3. List several general advantages and disadvantages for this type of study design.
a. This is not referring to the advantages/disadvantages of this particular study. For example, if this is a cross-sectional study I only want the general strengths/weaknesses of all cross-sectional studies, not what this one study did well or poorly.
4. What is the outcome under investigation? How is it defined?
a. In this case, the “outcome under investigation” refers to what they’re trying to determine with their actual questionnaires. Outcome under investigation does not necessarily refer to the end result of the entire study, but the outcome that they’re testing for in their experiment/data collection method. So think “what were the researchers trying to determine/confirm/identify” and don’t think about what conclusions they drew from that information. For instance, if a researcher is investigating an e-coli outbreak, their final goal may be to determine what caused the outbreak, but their outcome under investigation may simply be “presence of e-coli as confirmed by laboratory analysis”. Just something to keep in mind, and feel free to contact me if this is giving you a hard time.
5. What other variables were measured or assessed in the study?
6. Describe the sample and the sampling strategies used in the study.
a. Consider the following – Who are the participants? Were the specific inclusion or exclusion criteria? Where was the sample drawn from? How did the participants know about the study?
7. What types of bias should you be aware of when reading a study of this type? What type of bias is evidenced in the article, if any?
a. Note that bias in research doesn’t just mean intentional favoritism or prejudice. Bias can also happen unintentionally or be an inherent pitfall of a particular study design that must be considered when interpreting the results.
8. What were the major results?
9. What is the “take-home” message? How can the results from this study inform or enhance your practice as a health professional?
10. Include a citation of the article using either AMA or APA style.
a. For more information on AMA style citation, consult the following website: https://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/1017/01/