Introduction to Next Steps: a longitudinal study in England

19 Apr 2023

This training webinar gives first-time users and researchers less familiar with Next Steps an insight into this unique cohort of ‘millennials’ in England. It includes an introduction to the study aims, content and design as well as a helpful look at some of the types of research that can be conducted using the study, including linked administrative data opportunities.

Event details


This webinar took place on Wednesday 19 April 2023.

About the event


Next Steps, is a unique cohort study which follows the lives of around 16,000 people in England born in 1989-90. This ‘millennial’ generation grew up in a time of rapid technological change, have faced some of the highest university tuition fees and entered the labour market during the Great Recession, these and other experiences have framed their opportunities and expectations.

Next Steps includes extensive educational information on attitudes to school and teachers, bullying experiences, subjects studied, qualifications achieved and educational trajectories. Education is one of the most important predictors of people’s life chances delineating earnings, stable employment, health, criminality and life satisfaction. Explaining differences in educational attainment is essential to understanding lifetime inequalities and Next Steps is a brilliant resource in understanding these multidimensional relationships as we follow them into adulthood at age 25 and throughout the Covid-19 pandemic when they were aged 30/31. Other important experiences are captured from adolescence to adulthood, for example, longstanding illness, alcohol and drug consumption, caring responsibilities and employment and training.

Next Steps has also been linked to administrative data including the National Pupil Database, the Individualised Learning Record, Student Loans Company data and Hospital Episodes Statistics data. These linkages enhance the main survey data with individuals’ health records and key data specific to secondary and further education.

This webinar is aimed at new users of Next Steps, in particular, but not exclusively, researchers who are interested in social mobility, mental health, student debt, economic inequality, experiences throughout the pandemic and hospitalisation incidences. It aims to guide the user through the process of accessing and making effective use of the data for your own research projects.

Webinar Aims

  • Communicate the aims and purpose of Next Steps
  • Discuss the sample and study design
  • Highlight the types of data available during adolescence and into early adulthood, including experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic
  • Summarise data enhancements linked administrative data opportunities
  • Showcase recent examples of research using the data
  • Describe how to access the data

Webinar presenters

  • Morag Henderson, Associate Professor in Sociology and Principal Investigator of Next Steps, Centre for Longitudinal Studies (CLS)
  • Vanessa Moulton, Senior Research Associate, CLS

Followed by an expert panel who can answer your questions, including the Study Researcher, Dr Alison Wu and Research Data Manager, Sarab Rihal.

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Event enquiries

Richard Steele
Events and Marketing Officer

Phone: 020 7911 5320

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Centre for Longitudinal Studies
UCL Social Research Institute

20 Bedford Way
London WC1H 0AL


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