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Time Sampling

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SEPTEMBER 25, 2014


When observing children there are different type of methods that can be used. The different type

of observation methods that can be used are: Anecdotal Record, Running Account, Time Sampling, and

Event Sampling. Depending on the type of behavior you are observing will determine which

observation tool that you should use. An Anecdotal Record is the simplest form of direct observation

that can be used to develop an understanding of a child's behavior. Anecdotal records require charts,

special settings and you do not need any form of training. Anecdotal records are brief narrative

accounts describing an incident of a child's behavior and are written after the observation of the

behavior has occurred. When using the narrative form of observation, your ears and eyes act like a

video camera. During the observations, you will record how a child communicates, how they look,

what their body movements are, and how their attitudes and feelings are.

A Running Record is a detailed history of a behavior that is recorded consecutively as the behavior

is happening. A Running Record includes all the behavior that is being observed, not just

discriminating incidents. In a Running Record, the viewer sits apart from the child/children and

documents everything that occurs over a specified period. The advantage of a Running Record is that it

is open-ended, accurate, and a completed record.

Time Sampling is when an observer records the occurrence of a child's behavior over time. Time

Sampling is repeated and short focused snapshots of the child's development in order to collect precise

data over a long period of time. The observation is concentrated on what happens at regular

intermissions. When using the Time Sampling method, the observer is able to gather information over a

period of...


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