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Impact of early childcare arrangements and the home-learning environment on child development (ViVAplus)


Prof. Dr. Hans-Günther Roßbach, University of Bamberg
Prof. Dr. Sabine Weinert, University of Bamberg

Jan-David Freund, University of Bamberg
Lars Burghardt, University of Bamberg

Project Summary:
The first years of life set the course for further development as well as educational opportunities and success. Developmental progress is influenced by the characteristics of the child and different learning environments: First and foremost the home-learning-environment (HLE), increasingly supplemented (though differently with respect to time point, extent, and format) by early institutional and family childcare and education (ECEC). Some longitudinal studies have addressed the interaction between early child characteristics, HLE, and ECEC in Germany. Less is known about these interactions in very early phases of development and their impact on later developments. Conclusions from existing international studies have to be drawn with caution, because maternal leave and day-care regulations differ widely across countries and are accompanied by differences in use and arrangements of HLE and ECEC. Moreover, the few existing representative large-scale-studies in Germany are cross-sectional and partially outdated, because day-care-regulations for children under 3 changed fundamentally. Data from the infant cohort study (SC1) of the NEPS make it possible to close this gap. This large-scale longitudinal study started in 2012 with 3500 7-month-old children. Thus, it includes the first cohort of children exposed to the changed day-care-situation in Germany. Within the third funding phase of SPP1646 longitudinal data covering 6 panel-waves will be available that encompass early infancy and childhood up to age 5 when children are approaching the transition to school. ViVA+ will draw on data from the NEPS SC1 and the still running ViVA-project with a focus on longitudinal analyses and the main aims: (1) to describe the actual care arrangements of the representative sample; (2) to generate comprehensive indicators that set the stage for the analyses to be conducted in ViVA+; (3) to investigate the impact of HLE and ECEC on child development; and (4) to study the interactions between HLE, ECEC, and child characteristics.