Abstract and Keywords
This chapter outlines standards and best practices for designing cross-cultural and cross-ethnic comparative investigations of acculturation and health. It distinguishes two streams of research—public health (epidemiological studies) and those that focus on theory-testing (socio-behavioral studies); provides an overview of acculturation measures, including an analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of various assessment techniques; and briefly describes common approaches to the assessment of health and health-related behaviors. It describes how to set up studies that meet high standards, addressing key issues in defining populations in comparative studies, sampling, and the need for careful data collection procedures; describes various research designs, emphasizing the need for control of extraneous variables; and specifically highlights issues of equivalence and how bias can be identified and avoided. Finally, it summarizes challenges faced by researchers and describes new initiatives that might address some of the common shortcomings of comparative studies of acculturation and health.
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