Child and adolescent development

Our research expertise

The way children develop and grow is influenced by a range of factors such as family environment, education, religion, social networks, parenting style, physical health and their neighbourhood/community. Learning more about how certain factors influence the way children develop is important for informing policy and ultimately improving outcomes for Australian children.

AIFS expertise in child development primarily stems from the longitudinal study Growing Up in Australia: The Longitudinal Study of Australian Children (LSAC). Key topics of research in the study have focused on:

  • education
  • health
  • time use and activities
  • childhood transitions and pathways
  • work and family
  • social and emotional development
  • family relationships, interactions and wellbeing.

Current projects

Growing Up in Australia: The Longitudinal Study of Australian Children
LSAC is a major study following the development of 10,000 children and families from all parts of Australia.

Child Family Community Australia (CFCA)
The CFCA is an information exchange for professionals working with children, families and communities.

Evaluation of childcare flexibility trials
An evaluation of the Australian Child Care Flexibility Trials introduced by the Department of Education.

Selected publications 

A safe and supportive environment for children: Key components and links to child outcomes
Reviews the prevalence of different types of family environments in society and explores the influence these environments have on different child outcomes.

The Longitudinal Study of Australian Children (LSAC) Annual Statistical Report 2013
This report covers a variety of ways in which Australian children's experiences and environments affect their prospects and progress.

Access to Early Childhood Education in Australia: Insights from a qualitative study
Investigates parents' knowledge of and attitudes towards Early Childhood Education (ECE).

Did you know ...

1 in 3 children (10-11) report being bullied or picked on by their peers.

Find out more


Galina Daraganova
Executive Manager | Longitudinal Studies | Data Linkage and Integrating Authority

Diana Smart
Senior Research Fellow

Karena Jessup
Senior Manager, Survey Research

Jennifer Renda
Manager, Survey research

More information

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