The Children of the 2020s Study will include babies born in April, May, and June 2021, and seeks to recruit over 8,000 families in early 2022 to take part in the study. The sample will be drawn from Child Benefit records.
The study consists of a five-wave longitudinal survey of children from nine months to five years with face-to-face data collection at nine months (Wave 1) and three years (Wave 3). Non-face-to-face modes will be administered using a sequential mixed mode design using online and telephone surveys when children are aged two (Wave 2), four (Wave 4) and five (Wave 5).
Data collection will include assessments of child development, neighbourhood and family context, family structure, health and mental health, the home learning environment, and formal and informal childcare provision and preschool education. Record linkages will include to educational outcomes, and if possible, health and developmental records of mother and baby will also be linked.
The study will include data collection using an innovative smartphone system BabySteps, to allow us to capture rich developmental and home environment measures including video-recordings of parent-child interaction and video and audio-recordings of language and motor development at low cost.
In order to assess the effects of early education and care, the study will include innovative data collection using Teacher Tapp app technology. A separate sub-study of early care settings may also be included. This would involve live observations of around 600 childcare providers at ages three-four and four-five.
High quality, cleaned, and fully weighted datasets, along with data documentation and guidance following each wave of data collection will be produced, alongside non-response analyses and details of the weighting system applied.
Who funds the study?
The Children of the 2020s Study receives funding from the Department for Education.