MCS age 11 initial findings

The first five surveys of the Millennium Cohort Study  – at ages 9 months and 3, 5, 7 and 11 years – have built up a uniquely detailed portrait of the children of the new century. The study has collected information on diverse aspects of their lives, including behaviour, cognitive development, health, schooling, housing and parents’ employment and education.

The Age 11 survey took place between January 2012 and February 2013. Trained fieldworkers conducted interviews with 13,287 children and their parents or guardians.

Key findings:

  • More than half of the millennium children experienced poverty at some point in their first 11 years.
  • Nearly four in ten of the children have lived through at least one change in their parents’ relationship status.
  • One in five children are obese by age 11.
  • Most 11-year-olds seem very happy with their lives nevertheless – and they are even happier with their families.
  • Social background remains the most powerful predictor of 11-year-olds’ cognitive abilities.

The MCS has had a significant impact on UK policy, and will continue to provide a vital source of evidence for policymakers addressing social challenges for many years to come.

Read the full report

Millennium Cohort Study: Initial findings from the Age 11 survey (PDF), edited by Professor Lucinda Platt

MCS briefing paper series

The following plain English briefing papers summarise the findings from the full report.

MCS age 11 podcast series

Listen to the authors discuss their findings in a series of podcasts different issues facing the children of the new century. See the full list of podcasts.

Kate Smith discusses pertinent issues in children's lives as they grow up – including friendships, bullying, social networking and discipline at home.

More news on the age 11 findings

21st century childhoods may be very different but they still seem largely enjoyable

Do children born in the UK at the beginning of the new millennium have some reasons to be cheerful? Yes, it appears that they do.

Inequalities in cognitive development persist for the millennium generation

Social background remains the most powerful predictor of 11-year-olds’ cognitive abilities, a new study confirms.

Fieldwork agency

The MCS age 11 fieldwork was carried out by Ipsos MORI