Journal article

Children's language abilities at age 10 and exposure to intimate partner violence in early childhood: Results of an Australian prospective pregnancy cohort study

Laura J Conway, Fallon Cook, Petrea Cahir, Stephanie Brown, Sheena Reilly, Deirdre Gartland, Fiona Mensah, Rebecca Giallo



BACKGROUND: Approximately one in four children in Australia have mothers who experience intimate partner violence (IPV). These children are at risk of poor mental health. Less is known about their language outcomes, despite evidence that childhood adversity threatens neurodevelopment, and the home environment effects language development. OBJECTIVE: This study aimed to examine the relationship between early childhood IPV exposure and language outcomes (receptive vocabulary, general language, pragmatic language) at age 10, including the influence of maternal depressive symptoms. PARTICIPANTS AND SETTING: Participants were 615 mothers and their first-born child participating in a prospective, ..

View full abstract


Awarded by Australian National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC)

Awarded by NHMRC Senior Research Fellowship

Awarded by NHMRC Safer Families Centre

Awarded by Melbourne Children's LifeCourse postdoctoral fellowship - Royal Children's Hospital Foundation

Awarded by NHMRC Career Development Fellowships

Awarded by National Health and Medical Research Council of Australia

Funding Acknowledgements

The Maternal Health Study (MHS) was supported by project grants from the Australian National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) (199222, 433006, 491205), & Australian Rotary Health. SB holds a NHMRC Senior Research Fellowship (1103976). RG & FM previously held NHMRC Career Development Fellowships (1123900, 1111160). LC & DG are postdoctoral researchers supported by the NHMRC Safer Families Centre (1116690). LC & FC are also supported by a Melbourne Children's LifeCourse postdoctoral fellowship, funded by Royal Children's Hospital Foundation grant (2018-984). LifeCourse acknowledges all collaborators, cohort representatives and participants; further details. The views expressed in this paper are those of the authors and may not reflect those of their organisational affiliations, nor of other collaborating individuals or organisations. Researchers at the Murdoch Children's Research Institute are supported by the Victorian Government Operational Infrastructure Support Program.