3414.0 - Guide to Migrant Statistical Sources, 2011 (Edition 2)  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 29/03/2011   
   Page tools: Print Print Page Print all pages in this productPrint All



Growing up in Australia - The Longitudinal Study of Australian Children (LSAC)


Growing up in Australia - The Longitudinal Study of Australian Children (LSAC) was initiated and funded by the Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs (FaHCSIA). The study is being undertaken in partnership with the Australian Institute of Family Studies (AIFS) with advice being provided by a consortium of leading researchers at research institutions and universities throughout Australia. The data collection is undertaken for AIFS by the Australian Bureau of Statistics. The study, initially funded for 9 years, aims to provide a comprehensive national picture of Australian children and their families.

LSAC will identify the key factors influencing child outcomes over the developmental life course in the early years, including their interaction. A range of age appropriate developmental outcomes are being measured, including physical/mental health, social and developmental, academic and risk behaviours.

Data are being collected over seven years from two cohorts every two years. The first cohort of 5,000 children aged less than 12 months in 2003-04 is being followed until they reach 6 to 7 years of age, and the second cohort comprising 5,000 children aged 4 years in 2003-04 is being followed until they reach 10 or 11 years of age. Study informants include the child (when of an appropriate age) and their parents, carers and teachers. LSAC collects information via face-to-face interviews, self-completion questionnaires, some computer assisted telephone interviewing, diaries, physical measuring, and assessment based activities.

LSAC will add to the understanding of early childhood development, inform social policy debate, and be used to identify opportunities for early intervention and prevention strategies, in policy areas concerning children, specifically parenting, family relationships and functioning, early childhood education and schooling, child care and health.


The focus of the study is on the early years of children's lives therefore 'the child' is the sampling unit of interest. The study has adopted a cross-sequential design that follows two cohorts whose ages will overlap as the study progresses. The sample is broadly representative of all Australian children (citizens and permanent residents) in each of two selected age cohorts: children born between March 2003 and February 2004 (B cohort) and children born between March 1999 and February 2000 (K cohort). Children in some remote parts of Australia were excluded.


Data items relevant to migrants and ethnicity:

  • Country of birth
  • Year of arrival
  • English as a second language

Other socio-demographic areas include:
  • Age and gender of all household members
  • Family type
  • Number of siblings
  • Work status of parents
  • Educational status of parents
  • Parents' income
  • Housing and neighbourhood

More specific data items are collected under the following categories:
  • Child care
  • Child care provider, including non-parental child-care
  • Child's development
  • Child's diet and nutrition
  • Child's health
  • Conception, pregnancy and birth
  • Child's education
  • Family functioning and parenting
  • Social capital

  • Standard Australian Classification of Countries, (cat. no. 1269.0)
  • Australian Standard Classification of Languages (cat. no. 1267.0)
  • Australian Standard Classification of Occupations (cat. no. 1220.0)

  • State/territory
  • Capital City Statistical Subdivision
  • Balance of state


A comprehensive range of publications including annual reports, newsletters, discussion, technical and conference papers, journal articles and promotional material are available from the 'Publications' section of the LSAC website at www.aifs.gov.au/growingup.

Data are warehoused at the Australian Institute of Family Studies and are available to researchers approved by FaHCSIA. Recipients of data must abide by strict security and confidentiality protocols. Prospective users will be required to read and complete a dataset application and sign a deed of license. A nominal fee will be charged to cover administrative costs of delivering datasets. The data are provided as SAS datasets and SPSS system files. Further application details are available from the 'Data access' section of the LSAC website at www.aifs.gov.au/growingup.


Information can also be obtained from:

Growing Up in Australia
Australian Institute of Family Studies
Level 20, 485 La Trobe St
Melbourne Victoria 3000
Tel: (03) 9214 7888
Fax: (03) 9214 7839
Email: lsacweb@aifs.gov.au
Web: http://www.aifs.gov.au/growingup/