The assessment of growth is an important part of paediatrics and community child health. Poor growth is a common side-effect of many local and systemic conditions and its identification acts as a useful early warning of a possible problem. In addition, disorders directly affecting growth, for example, growth hormone deficiency, can be diagnosed only through growth monitoring. The process of growth assessment involves single or multiple measurements of height and/or weight, and sometimes more specialized measurements, plotted on suitable reference charts and interpreted appropriately. Poor growth is reflected by an extreme measurement centile on a single occasion, or evidence of marked centile crossing over time. Careful attention needs to be given to the processes of measurement, recording and interpretation.