Next Steps, previously known as the Longitudinal Study of Young People in England (LSYPE), follows the lives of around 16,000 people in England born in 1989-90.
The study began in 2004 when the cohort members were aged 14, with an original sample of 15,770 people. Cohort members were surveyed annually until 2010, and the next sweep after this was when they were aged 25, in 2015-16.
What’s in the study?
Next Steps has collected information about cohort members’ education and employment, economic circumstances, family life, physical and emotional health and wellbeing, social participation and attitudes.
The Next Steps data has also been linked to National Pupil Database (NPD) records, which include the cohort members’ individual scores at Key Stage 2, 3 and 4 and more administrative linkages are planned (for example: Higher Education Statistics Agency, The Universities and Colleges Admissions Service, Department for Work and Pensions).
What has the study found?
Next Steps has provided important evidence about the factors that influence young people’s performance at school and their educational transitions, and about the lives of young adults in their twenties. It has had a major impact on education policy, including raising the compulsory participation age in education and training, investing in vocational education and developing guidance for schools on how to stop bullying.
Research based on Next Steps has provided insight into bullying of disabled and sexual minority people and the role of subject choice and aspirations in educational trajectories.
The study has also contributed new evidence on the experiences in the labour market of young adults today, and in particular on the association between shift work and zero-hours contracts and mental health.
Who funds the study?
Next Steps is funded by the Economic and Social Research Council. The study was previously managed and funded by the Department for Education (2004-12).