Research Projects Using Growing Up Data

Child speech, language and communication skills and specialist support. Are parents accessing support for their children with speech, language and communication needs?

Publication Date:
Lead Organisation:
University of Auckland
Lead Researcher:
Bianca Jackson
Access Type:
Primary Classification:
Family and Whanau
Secondary Classification:
Health and Wellbeing

This research explores children’s speech, language and communication skills, parental understanding of speech, language and communication (SLC) development and whether parents are accessing services that are available to support them. Findings will inform the redesign and future delivery of speech, language and communication services for children to ensure improved access, reduced inequities and better outcomes for all tamariki.

The research objectives are to:
1. Identify children's SLC skills and create profiles of children's SLC skills;
2. Identify the proportion of parents that are concerned about their child’s SLC;
3. Identify the proportion of parents that have sought out help or support for their child’s SLC;
4. Plot the trajectories of these (1, 2, 3) over time to identify patterns or trends in parents understanding of SLC and their access to support services.

For the first research objective, questions in the GUiNZ study at each time point will be scrutinised for their ability to identify SLC skills. Responses to questions about children’s skills will be categorised descriptively relevant to the skill  e.g. small/ medium/ large vocabulary, and these categories will be described in detail through iterative analysis of the data. The categories will be then combined to create profiles of SLC skills.

Descriptive statistics will identify proportions of parents that have concerns about their children and those that have accessed support.

This research is exploratory and aims to characterise SLC skills in young children in Aotearoa/New Zealand and inform policy for communication services.