Using diary methods to study marital and family processes

J Fam Psychol. 2005 Mar;19(1):86-97. doi: 10.1037/0893-3200.19.1.86.


Diary methods allow researchers to study marital and family processes within the context of daily life in a way that is not possible with more traditional methods. The authors review applications of diary designs in marital and family research and detail the types of research questions that can uniquely be asked of dyadic/family diary data. Technological developments for the use of electronic palm-top devices for implementing diary methods are also reviewed. Additionally, the authors discuss specific issues relevant to the analysis of diary data that come from dyads or families. Last, the authors raise unresolved issues and directions for future research in the use of diary methods for studying marital and family processes.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Behavioral Research / methods
  • Computers, Handheld
  • Data Interpretation, Statistical
  • Family Relations*
  • Humans
  • Marriage / psychology*
  • Records*
  • Research Design