Longitudinal cohort studies that track the lives of participants over many years are a powerful tool for understanding human development from childhood into old age.

The SEED cohort studies platform is a gateway to some of the world’s most important cohort studies. Together, they help understand the factors that matter most for healthy development.

Continuum of Care

  • Prevention
  • Treatment
  • Continuing Care
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  • Pregnancy
  • Infancy
  • Toddlerhood
  • Childhood
  • Adolescence
  • Young Adulthood
  • Middle Adulthood
  • Late Adulthood
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Why is developmental psychology important?

In our many decades of developmental psychology research, we have learnt that every age and stage of the lifespan matters for mental health.

Social and emotional development needs support from pregnancy to birth through to old age. When that support is not available, the result can be an intergenerational cycle of poor mental health.

Understanding how mental health problems develop is important, but human development is about so much more. It is about reaching potential, connecting with others, and contributing positively to the world around us.

There is much to learn about how social and emotional strengths develop and what is needed to promote resilience throughout life. Resilience will be needed in a world threatened by accelerating climate change and increasing social inequalities.

How longitudinal cohort studies benefit developmental research

Longitudinal cohort studies help us understand human development. They collect information from the same group of people over time.

Researchers use longitudinal studies to track development over time. For example, SEED’s longitudinal cohort studies probe what factors from the past might have contributed to participants being more – or less – emotionally healthy.

Our studies are some of Australia’s most mature and respected longitudinal cohort studies. They play a significant role by identifying and mapping the factors that matter most for healthy social and emotional development. We then use these factors to monitor population wellbeing and guide intervention development.

One longitudinal study directory to unite them all

The SEED longitudinal cohort studies platform will bring longitudinal studies from across and beyond Deakin University onto one easy-to-navigate directory.

A central directory enables researchers to better use the rich data within the cohort studies. It will inform:

  • where studies can pool resources
  • where unique questions can be explored
  • gaps in knowledge for future investigations.

Via the SEED longitudinal cohort studies platform, researchers can build connections across Deakin University, but also with partners such as the Melbourne Children’s LifeCourse initiative and the ARACY Longitudinal Studies Network.

The platform showcases the contribution that longitudinal cohort studies make in understanding the lives of Australian children and families in current and future generations.

Meet the team

The SEED Lifecourse Sciences longitudinal cohort studies platform is a project of Deakin University’s SEED Lifespan Lifecourse Sciences theme.

SEED conducts world-leading research on social development and its origins in early emotional life. The Lifecourse Sciences theme supports research into the developmental origins of mental health and disorder across generations.

Project leads

Lifecourse research coordinator

Partner organisations

  • Murdoch Children’s Research Institute
  • National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre
  • Australian Research Alliance for Children and Youth
  • Human Early Learning Partnership, University of British Columbia, Canada