The National Child Development Study (NCDS) is a longitudinal study which follows the lives of 17,000 people born in England, Scotland and Wales in a single week of 1958. Also known as the 1958 Birth Cohort Study, it collects information on physical and educational development, economic circumstances, employment, family life, health behaviour, wellbeing, social participation and attitudes.
Since the birth survey in 1958, there have been nine further sweeps of all cohort members at ages 7, 11, 16, 23, 33, 42, 46, 50 and 55. In 2003 (at age 45), 9,000 cohort members also participated in a special bio-medical survey to learn more about how development, environments and lifestyles affect peoples health. CLS will carry out a new survey of the NCDS cohort at age 60 in 2018.
NCDS is part of CLOSER (Cohort & Longitudinal Studies Enhancement Resources) which aims to maximise the use, value and impact of the UK’s longitudinal studies.