AUTHOR=Fuchs Peter, Nussbeck Fridtjof W., Meuwly Nathalie, Bodenmann Guy
TITLE=Analyzing Dyadic Sequence Data—Research Questions and Implied Statistical Models
JOURNAL=Frontiers in Psychology
VOLUME=8
YEAR=2017
PAGES=429
URL=https://www.frontiersin.org/article/10.3389/fpsyg.2017.00429
DOI=10.3389/fpsyg.2017.00429
ISSN=1664-1078
ABSTRACT=The analysis of observational data is often seen as a key approach to understanding dynamics in romantic relationships but also in dyadic systems in general. Statistical models for the analysis of dyadic observational data are not commonly known or applied. In this contribution, selected approaches to dyadic sequence data will be presented with a focus on models that can be applied when sample sizes are of medium size (N = 100 couples or less). Each of the statistical models is motivated by an underlying potential research question, the most important model results are presented and linked to the research question. The following research questions and models are compared with respect to their applicability using a hands on approach: (I) Is there an association between a particular behavior by one and the reaction by the other partner? (Pearson Correlation); (II) Does the behavior of one member trigger an immediate reaction by the other? (aggregated logit models; multi-level approach; basic Markov model); (III) Is there an underlying dyadic process, which might account for the observed behavior? (hidden Markov model); and (IV) Are there latent groups of dyads, which might account for observing different reaction patterns? (mixture Markov; optimal matching). Finally, recommendations for researchers to choose among the different models, issues of data handling, and advises to apply the statistical models in empirical research properly are given (e.g., in a new r-package “DySeq”).