What’s the key to healthy ageing? Participate in an online survey

2 minute read

An older and younger woman making biscuits in the kitchen

By tracking people over time, the AgeHAPPY survey hopes to identify factors that promote physical and mental health throughout life. Anyone can take part.

The survey

The Healthy Ageing Project Population Youth to Senior (AgeHAPPY) survey is an online health survey run by the University of Melbourne.

AgeHAPPY is a longitudinal survey, which means that it tracks people over time. It collects information about health, behaviour, lifestyle and relationships.

Researchers will analyse this information to identify the factors affecting healthy ageing, mental health, memory and thinking skills. Their findings can guide new ways of understanding healthy ageing. They can also help in preventing brain disorders and mental health problems, or detecting them earlier.

AgeHAPPY is part of the University’s Healthy Ageing Program, a study led by physician Professor Cassandra Szoeke that has been running since 1990. The survey is a collaboration with the University of California, San Francisco.

More than 4000 participants have taken part in the survey since it started in 2019.

How the survey works

If you take part in AgeHAPPY, you’ll start by completing an online questionnaire. It includes questions about your general health history, family health history, mental health, quality of life, physical activity, sleep, diet, alcohol intake, smoking, physical activity, social relationships, and negative life events, such as experiencing or witnessing violence. Then you’ll be asked to complete some online brain games to test your memory and thinking skills.

Each year after that, you’ll be invited to complete a follow-up online questionnaire. You can leave and re-join at any time.

The questionnaire can be completed on a mobile phone, tablet or computer. The online brain games can be completed only on a computer. It takes around an hour to complete all parts of the survey.

How to take part

Anyone can participate in AgeHAPPY. If you’d like to take part, register here.

Find out more

If you have any questions about AgeHAPPY, or you would like more information, contact the Project Coordinator at healthy-ageing@unimelb.edu.au

Image: Andrea Piacquadio/Pexels

Related items