Every study has its own limitations and room for improvement and below captured some of the limitations of this study.
First, small sample size is one of this study’s limitation. As only three families are interviewed, this study alone might not be able to capture the full picture of the Thai-Chinese community in Hong Kong. Besides, it might not be able to recognize and acknowledge the diversity and variations within the community as well.
Moreover, the absence of grandparent generation is another limitation of this study. Due to the unavailability of the grandparent generations, unfortunately, this study does not manage to collect any data from the grandparents generations . Therefore, there is only two generations data in this study – the parent generation and daughter-or-son generation. This might hinder us to investigate the whole language shift process as well as their changes of beliefs across generations.
Lastly, the data on participants language use might not be accurate and full. Due to limited interview time and resources, it is hard to observe their language practice across different context. And participants might have false memory or simply they are not aware of their language use under different situations. All of these contribute to their inaccuracy in describing their language choice across contexts. Moreover, it is also hard to give an accurate amount for the percentage describing the language used in certain context.
From the experience gathered in this study and regarding the limitations discussed earlier, we have the following suggestions for future studies.
First, we suggest future studies interview and include more families in the study in order to capture a more comprehensive picture of the whole community. Second, we also encourage them to conduct a study on families which three consecutive generations are available. This can help to fill up the gap of the absence of grandparents generation data in the current study and to investigate more into the shift of language and idea across generations.
Besides, in order to increase the accuracy of the data on language use, we have the following suggestions. With sufficient time and resources, we suggest a one-day participant observation as if the researcher follow the participant for a day to record their language use in different context. If this is not possible, we suggest that the future study can invite the participants to fill out a language diary as detail as possible. By analyzing the data provided in the language diary, the researcher can gain a more holistic view on their language practice and also easier to generate a more accurate percentage regarding their language use. These two approaches can both help to ease the problem of false memory or unawareness, which give rise to the accuracy of data.