Frequently Asked Questions about Growing Up in Australia
Growing Up in Australia is a longitudinal study that is conducted in partnership between the Australian Government Department of Social Services, the Australian Institute of Family Studies and the Australian Bureau of Statistics, with advice provided by a consortium of leading researchers.
The study aims to examine the impact of Australia's unique social and cultural environment on the next generation and will further understanding of development in early childhood through to adolescence.
Growing Up in Australia explores a range of research areas about children's development and wellbeing and their families including:
- Children's social and emotional development
- Health behaviour and risk factors
- Health status
- Learning and cognition outcomes
- Learning environment
- Family demographics
- Parent living elsewhere
- School/Preschool/Child care program characteristics
- Home education and environment
- Paid work
- Social capital
In 2000-2001, the Government announced its intention to undertake a comprehensive, national longitudinal study of children and their families. Growing Up in Australia is intended to make a major contribution by establishing an up-to-date evidence base for guiding policies that will promote the optimal development and wellbeing of Australian children.
Participants in the study include the child's parents, child care providers, teachers and the child (when of an appropriate age).
The families are visited once every two years when they are interviewed and direct observations and assessments are conducted. Families are also contacted ‘in-between' interviewing years and complete a short mail-out questionnaire.
Field interviewers conduct both face-to-face and telephone interviews with the study child's parents and face-to-face interviews with the study child. The responses are entered onto a laptop computer. In 2010, the parents and study children also completed part of the interview by entering their responses using a laptop computer (known as Computer Assisted Self Interviewing). The study child's teacher, carer and other resident parent (known as Parent 2) are required to complete paper questionnaires. Parents who do not live with the study child are also included in the study and are interviewed by telephone.
The sample was selected from the Medicare enrolment database held by the Health Insurance Commission.
The Health Insurance Commission selected children of the appropriate ages and sent an 'invitation to participate' letter to the Medicare cardholder, along with a brochure on Growing Up in Australia. Families had four weeks to register their withdrawal from the study. At the end of this period, remaining families were sent a letter indicating when an interviewer will be in their area. Interviewers subsequently contacted families to arrange an appointment.
B or infant cohort: 5112 children aged 3-15 months at the start of the study (2004)
K or child cohort: 4991 children aged 4-5 years at the start of the study (2004)
|B (infant)||0-1 years||2-3 years||4-5 years||6-7 years||8-9 years||10-11 years||12-13 years||14-15 years|
|K (child)||4-5 years||6-7 years||8-9 years||10-11 years||12-13 years||14-15 years||16-17 years||18-19 years|
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