Short and long term impacts of Covid-19 on Older childreN's healTh-Related behAviours, learning and wellbeing STudy (CONTRAST)


Child using a laptop

Exploring how the Covid-19 (lockdown) restrictions affect lives of older children, particularly how they have influenced learning, eating, physical and other activities and wellbeing.

We will be asking 11 to 15 year old children to complete a short online survey. The study starts in June 2020.

 Principal Investigator

Dr Miranda Pallan

Miranda PallanInstitute of Applied Health Research

Reader in Public Health & Epidemiology

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Aims of the project

We aim to explore the short-term impacts of the Covid-19 (lockdown) restrictions on learning, eating behaviours, physical and other activities, and wellbeing in children aged 11-15 years. We will explore differences in the impacts according to gender, ethnicity and family affluence.

We will also follow up children once they are back at school so we can explore the longer-term effects of the Covid-19 restrictions.   

Why is this research needed?

The Covid-19 (lockdown) restrictions introduced in March 2020 have resulted in big changes to all our lives. A major change for most children is that they are no longer going to school and school learning is having to take place within the home environment. This shift is likely to influence not only formal school learning, but also other aspects of life, such as extracurricular activities, socialising with other pupils and being a part of school life. The changes to our lives are also likely to have a big influence on our eating and physical activity behaviours. Older secondary school-aged children are already in a period in life where they are experiencing rapid physical, social, emotional and mental changes, and so understanding the effects of the lockdown is particularly important in this age group. 

Interested in taking part?

If you are interested in taking part in this study, you can find further information in the CONTRAST study Patient Information Leaflet and you can access the survey and see the study invite here.

If you would like to know more about how the information you provide will be used and stored please access our privacy notice.

More information on how the University processes personal data can be found on the University’s website on the page called ‘Data Protection - How the University Uses Your Data’ (

What is involved?

We are recruiting young people aged 11 to 15 years through schools and social media. We are looking for young people who live in the UK and who will be staying at the same school in the next academic year (September 2020) to take part. 

Everyone who takes part will have the opportunity to enter a prize draw with the chance of winning one of six £30 voucher prizes.

If you take part we will ask you to complete an online survey. We will ask you some general questions about yourself and also your family, living arrangements and school. We will then ask you questions about your learning, other activities, eating and physical activity and your wellbeing.

Information for parents

We are a group of researchers from the University of Birmingham interested in exploring the impact of the Covid-19 restrictions (lockdown) on learning, eating, physical and other activities, and wellbeing in young people aged between 11 and 15 years in the UK.

This survey asks for information about your child, their family and school, and then asks them questions about their learning, eating, activities and general wellbeing, before and during the Covid-19 restrictions. It will take around 15-20 minutes to complete.

If your child decides to take part they will have the opportunity to be entered into a prize draw with a chance to win one of six £30 Amazon vouchers.

The information provided by your child will not be shared and only the researchers will read their answers. Your child’s name will not be included in any reports.




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