Research: The Influence and Impact of Playgroups Across Australia

A research paper funded by Playgroup Australia has been published analysing the influence and impact of playgroup attendance across Australia.


The objectives of the evaluation were to:

  • Explore the facilitators and barriers that influence Community Playgroup attendance, and
  • Examine the impact of attending playgroups on children’s early development.

Key findings

The findings demonstrate that playgroup is universally beneficial to all children from a range of different backgrounds. Specifically, findings from analyses on the impact of playgroup on child development demonstrate that:

  • The benefits of playgroup are seen across all domains of child development: physical, social, emotional, language and cognitive development, and communication
  • Children who do not attend playgroups are 1.78 times more likely to be developmentally vulnerable on 1 or more domains of the AEDC at school entry, after adjusting for socio-economic and demographic differences between the two groups.
  • Playgroups are universally beneficial for children from a range of different backgrounds, with adjusted odds ratios ranging from 1.48 to 1.86 for different population groups
  • There are big differences between jurisdictions in the beneficial impacts of playgroups, with adjusted odds ratios ranging from 1.28 in the Australian Capital Territory to 2.71 in Tasmania.

You can read the full research paper by downloading the PDF below.

Download PDF

Share this resource

Become a Member

Playgroup NSW leads play-based programs and services for NSW families with children birth to school age, offering development, shared experiences, and family support, that results in active citizens and inclusive communities.