Australian Early Development Census


​The fifth AEDC data collection took place from 4 May to 25 June 2021.

AEDC 2021 national, state and community level data is now available to access from the national AEDC website.

​Conducted every 3 years, the Australian Early Development Census (AEDC) is the most comprehensive collection of its kind in the world. The information gained from the census helps to shape the future and wellbeing of our children by providing evidence to support education, health and community policy and planning.

The AEDC measures how children are developing as they transition into their first year of school based on 5 key areas known as domains.

The 5 AEDC domains are:

  • physical health and wellbeing
  • social competence
  • emotional maturity
  • language and cognitive skills (school-based)
  • communication skills and general knowledge.

5 AEDC domains  

Each rectangular tile represents one of the 5 AEDC domains of child development: physical health and wellbeing, social competence, emotional maturity, language and cognitive skills (school-based) and communication skills and general knowledge.​

What the AEDC data means for Early Childhood Education and Care services

AEDC data provides evidence to help guide EYLF, QKLG and NQS planning. The data can inform educators about areas of developmental strengths and vulnerabilities in a community and support responsive environments and programs.

AEDC results can be used by early childhood education and care services to:

The department has worked with Early Childhood Australia to create ​ resources for early childhood education and care services.

What the AEDC data means for community organisations

The AEDC provides people with a common ground to work together to build and strengthen their community and help shape the future and wellbeing of Australian children.

AEDC data provide a snapshot of how children are developing in your community. By exploring the AEDC results, your community can work together to find out more about what works well in your area and what can be improved. This way, your community will be able to provide better support for local children and their families.

Specific examples of how communities have used the AEDC can be found in our AEDC Community Stories​.

More information

​Access the collection of resources to help ECEC services, community organisations and schools understand their AEDC data and how it can be used to inform curriculum programming, planning and quality improvement.

The professional development package – teaching in kindy: linking the AEDC and Queensland kindergarten learning guideline has been developed for kindergarten teachers working in an early childhood setting in the Queensland context.

A range of other resources, including fact sheets, community stories and guidance on understanding and using the data, are available on the national AEDC website.​

Last updated 17 February 2023