Centre for Community Child Health

CCCH art

Longitudinal Study of Australian Children Growing Up in Australia

  • Growing Up in Australia is the biggest ongoing national study of children ever mounted in Australia - following 10,000 children recruited in 2004 as babies and preschoolers from right across the nation. Studying the impact of Australia's unique social and cultural environment on the next generation, it aims to add to the understanding of early childhood development, inform social policy, and identify opportunities for interventions. 

    Around 5000 infants and 5000 4-5 year olds participated in Wave 1, to be followed by biennial waves of data collection. The study has been so successful that it is now likely to continue through to 2018.

    LSAC is funded by the Australian Government, and conducted from the Australian Institute of Family Studies. The Consortium Advisory Group comprises leading Australian researchers from institutions including the Murdoch Childrens Research Institute. Prof Melissa Wake of the Centre for Community Child Health heads the Growing Up Health Design Team. We have published extensively from LSAC, focusing to date on sleep, obesity, mental health and overall development and functioning.

    Our Growing Up obesity research was selected by NHMRC for its 2008  '10 of the Best' publication, highlighting top Australian research projects that are providing evidence on ways to combat some of our biggest health challenges as a nation. 

    Methodology:

    Population health study

    Date:

    Start: 2002
    Finish: 2010 confirmed, likely to continue to 2018

    Funding:

    Commonwealth Government Department 

    Contacts/Staff involved:

    Professor Melissa Wake 
    melissa.wake@rch.org.au

    Harriet Hiscock 
    harriet.hiscock@rch.org.au

    Susan Clifford 
    susan.clifford@mcri.edu.au

    Publications

    Wake M, Clifford SA, Patton GC, Waters E, Williams J, Canterford L, Carlin JB.  Morbidity patterns among the underweight, overweight and obese between 2 and 18 years: Population-based cross-sectional analyses.  International Journal of Obesity published online 12 Jun 2012.

    Nicholson J, Lucas N, Berthelsen D, Wake M.  Socioeconomic inequality profiles in physical and developmental health from 0-7 years: Australian national study.  Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health published online 26 Oct 2010 doi:10.1136/jech.2009.103291

    Hiscock H, Canterford L, Scalzo K, Wake M. Sleep duration as a predictor of body mass index in children aged 0-7 years: longitudinal study of Australian children. Submitted Journal of Pediatrics 6 July 2010.

    Wake M, Sanson A, Berthelsen D, Hardy P, Mission S, Smith K, Ungerer J and The LSAC Research Consortium. How well are Australian infants and children aged 4 to 5 years doing?Social Policy Research Paper no. 36, Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs, Canberra. (publication Oct 2008)

    Quach J, Hiscock H, Canterford L, Wake M. Outcomes of child sleep problems over the school transition period: Australian population longitudinal study. Accepted Pediatrics Aug 2008.

    Wake M, Hardy P, Sawyer M, Carlin J. Comorbidities of overweight/obesity in Australian pre-schoolers: cross-sectional population study. Archives of Disease in Childhood  2008;93(6): 502-507.

    Wake M, Nicholson JM, Hardy P, Smith K. Preschooler obesity and parenting styles of mothers and fathers: National population study.Pediatrics 2007; 120(6):e1520-e1527.

    Soloff C, Sanson A, Wake M, Harrison L. Enhancing longitudinal studies by linkage to national databases: Growing Up in Australia, the longitudinal study of Australian children. International Journal of Social Research Methodology 2007; 10(5): 349-363.

    Wake M, Hardy P, Canterford L, Sawyer M, Carlin JB. Overweight, obesity and girth of Australian preschoolers: prevalence and socioeconomic correlates. International Journal of Obesity2007; 31(7):1044-1051.

    Martin J, Hiscock H, Hardy P, Davey B, Wake M. Adverse associations of infant and child sleep problems and parent health: an Australian population study. Pediatrics 2007; 119(5):947-955.

    Hiscock H, Canterford L, Ukoumunne OC, Wake M. Adverse associations of sleep problems in Australian pre-schoolers: national population study. Pediatrics 2007; 119(1):86-93.

    Sawyer MG, Miller-Lewis L, Guy S, Wake M, Canterford L, Carlin JB. Is there a relationship between overweight and obesity, and mental health problems in 4 to 5 year-old Australian children?Ambulatory Pediatrics 2006; 6(6):306-311.

    Wake M. Australasian childhood longitudinal studies: exciting yet challenging times. J Paediatr Child Health 2004; 40(3):85-86.

    Sanson A, Nicholson J, Ungerer J, Zubrick S, Wilson K, Ainley J, Berthelsen D, Bittman M, Broom D,  Harrison L, Rodgers B, Sawyer M, Silburn S, Strazdins L, Vimpani G,  Wake M. Introducing the Longitudinal Study of Australian Children. LSAC Discussion Paper No1. Australian Institute of Family Studies, Melb, Australia. 2002. ISSN 1447-1566 (online), ISSN 1447-1558 (print).

    Presentations

    20th ASM - Sleep on it, healthy function of sleep, Adelaide; October 2008. Quach J, Hiscock H, Canterford L, Wake M. The natural history and outcome of child sleep problems across school transition: Longitudinal population study. (Oral presentation).

    Australian Population Health Congress, Brisbane; July 2008. Quach J, Hiscock H, Canterford L, Wake M. The natural history and outcome of child sleep problems across school transition: Longitudinal population study. (Oral presentation).

    PAS (Pediatric Academic Societies) Meeting, Honolulu, Hawaii; May 2008. Wake M, Hardy P, Sawyer M, Canterford L, Carlin J. Comorbidities of overweight/obesity in pre-schoolers: National Australian population study.

    Longitudinal Study of Australian Children (LSAC) Conference, Melbourne; October 2007. Hiscock H, Canterford L, Wake M. Natural history of infant sleep problems: the contributions of parenting style and parent mental health. 

    Longitudinal Study of Australian Children (LSAC) Conference, Melbourne; October 2007. Wake M, Nicholson J, Smith K. Do parenting styles of mothers and fathers influence prevalence and progression of obesity from the preschool to school years?

    Longitudinal Study of Australian Children (LSAC) Conference, Melbourne; October 2007. Hawkins M, Sanson A, and the LSAC Outcome Index Working Group (Melissa Wake is a member of the Working Group). The structure and validation of an index of child development.

    PAS (Pediatric Academic Societies) Meeting, Toronto, Canada; May 2007. Wake M, Nicholson JM, Hardy P, Smith K. Preschooler obesity and parenting styles of mothers and fathers: National population study. (Platform presentation)

    International Conference on Child Cohort Studies, Oxford, UK; Sept 2006. Wake M, Bittman M, Brown J, Canterford L, Carlin J, Hardy P, Sanson A, Sawyer M, Soloff C. Preschool overweight/obesity in the Longitudinal Study of Australian Children: prevalence, sociodemographic correlates and future data possibilities.

    International Conference on Child Cohort Studies, Oxford, UK; Sept 2006. Soloff C, Sanson A, Ungerer J, Harrison L, Wake M. Enhancing longitudinal studies by linkage to national databases: "Growing Up in Australia".  (Half hour oral presentation)

    10th International Congress on Obesity, Melbourne; September 2006. Wake M, Hardy P, Canterford L, Sawyer M, Carlin J. Overweight, obesity and girth of Australian preschoolers: prevalence and socioeconomic correlates. (Poster)

    19th Biennial Meeting, International Society for the Study of Behavioural Development (ISSBD), Melbourne; July 2006. Symposium: Children's time use diaries: Development and applications in child psychosocial and health research. Convenors: Michael Bittman, Kimberly Fisher. 3rd of four papers in symposium: Overweight/obesity and preschoolers' activity patterns: the Children's Light Time-Use Diary in the Longitudinal Study of Australian Children. Wake M, Bittman M.

    Royal Australasian College of Physicians Congress 2006, Cairns; May 2006. Wake M, Hardy P, Canterford L, Sawyer M, Carlin JB. Overweight, obesity and girth of Australian preschoolers: prevalence and socioeconomic correlates. (PRSANZ Research Award finalist).

    Royal Australasian College of Physicians, Chapter of Community Child Health, May 2005, Wellington, New Zealand. Wake M (on behalf of the LSAC Research Consortium). The Longitudinal Study of Australian Children. "Growing Up in Australia"

    Families Matter, 9th Australian Institute of Family Studies Conference, Melbourne, February 2005. Zubrick S, Wake M, Ungerer J, Harrison L, Berthelsen D, Nicholson J. Overview of measurement in Growing Up in Australia. (Invited symposium).

    Sixth RC33 International Conference on Social Science Methodology, Amsterdam, Netherlands; August 2004. Fisher K, Bittman M, Sanson A, Wake M, et al. Time use and the Longitudinal Study of Australian Children.

    International Child Health Services Research Meeting. Washington, DC, September 2003. "The Longitudinal Study of Australian Children" (Millenial Cohort Studies Symposium)

    International Association of Time Use Research Conference, Brussels, Belgium; Sept 2003. Fisher K, Bittman M, Sanson A, Wake M, and the LSAC Research Consortium. Monitoring Activity Patterns of Young Children - Recent Experience With 'Growing Up In Australia'.

    Royal Australasian College of Physicians, Chapter of Community Child Health, May 2003, Hobart, Tasmania. Wake M (on behalf of the LSAC Research Consortium). The Longitudinal Study of Australian Children. "Growing Up in Australia"

    Public Health Research: a Foundation for Victoria's Health. VicHealth Public Health Research Symposium, Melbourne; March 2003: "The Longitudinal Study of Australian Children"

 

Murdoch Childrens Research Institute

The Centre for Community Child Health is a department of The Royal Children’s Hospital and a research group of Murdoch Childrens Research Institute.