Assessing Spatial and Temporal Differences in State-Level Child Well-Being Based on Tests of Statistical Significance
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The concept of child well-being is central to the study of children and is reflected in data books, statistical indices, and report cards. Statistical indicators of child well-being are increasingly used to examine the quality of life for children. Such reports are often used to examine differences across geographic areas (spatial differences) and changes over time (temporal differences). In this study, indicators from a widely used report on child well-being are used to compare spatial differences and temporal differences among states in the U.S. based on tests of statistical significance. Results show that currently available indicators are better at detecting differences in child well-being between states at one point in time rather than state-level changes over time. Additionally, a state index of child well-being is constructed using statistically significant differences from the national data; the results of the new index proved to be similar to the more traditional z-score method.
KeywordsChild well-being Indicators Indices Scores or rankings
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