4402.0.55.001 - Microdata: Childhood Education and Care, Australia, June 2017 Quality Declaration 
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 23/04/2018   
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FILE STRUCTURE AND CONTENT


FILE STRUCTURE
FILE CONTENT
MULTI–RESPONSE DATA ITEMS
SPECIAL CODES
CONTINUOUS DATA ITEMS
POPULATIONS


This 'File Structure and Content' page provides important information that will assist in understanding the CEaCS TableBuilder.

It is recommended that the 'File Structure and Content' and 'Using TableBuilder' pages are read in full prior to using the CEaCS TableBuilder.


FILE STRUCTURE

The 2017 CEaCS TableBuilder is structured across four levels. The levels are:

1. Income Unit level
2. Income Unit Care level
3. Child level
4. Child Care level

The Income Unit level represents households consisting of a single income unit, which in CEaCS is a proxy for the family. All data items at this level relate to the household, the family, or to the parents (father/mother) in the family. Each family is represented as one record on this level. The next level, Income Unit Care level, is linked to the Income Unit level by a one-to-many relationship, and is comprised of a record for each different summary type of care used by the children aged 0-12 years in the family. Therefore, a family may have multiple records on this level dependent on how many types of care are used by the child(ren). This level is organised by the summary care index item 'Type of care used by the family', which has been derived using items relating to types of care used by selected children (on the Child Care level) and aggregate items relating to types of care used by other children in the family. This level includes one or more records for each family - a single record will be present for a family where 'no care or preschool' was used.

The Child level is linked to the Income Unit level in a one-to-many relationship. The Child level provides a record for each child aged 0-12 years selected for the CEaCS survey (up to two children per family), for which detailed information related to their education and care has been collected. The lowest level, Child Care level, is linked to the Child level in a one-to-many relationship, and provides a record for each type of care used by each child on the Child level. Therefore, a child may have multiple records on this level dependent on how many types of care they use. The Child Care level is organised by the care index item 'All types of care', which includes separate formal and informal care types as well as summary care type categories (which are sub-totals or totals of the separate care categories). This level includes one or more records for each selected child - a single record will be present for each child where 'no care or preschool' was used.

For further detail on how the terms household, family and income unit are used in CEaCS, please see the Glossary on the Explanatory Notes tab. Further information about each level is provided below.

FILE CONTENT

Income Unit level
Information available on the Income unit level includes age, country of birth, labour force status, income and educational attainment of parent(s). It also includes household and family characteristics, and geographic identifiers, such as state/territory of usual residence. Families may comprise:
  • couple family with children aged 12 years or younger, or
  • one parent family with children aged 12 years or younger.
Each family is represented as one record, and the counting unit is 'families'.

Income Unit Care level
The Income unit care level includes the type(s) of care used by the family, the cost of care to the family, the number of children in the family who use care, and whether care was used 'in the last week' and/or 'in a usual week'. All families are represented on this level (a single record will be present for a family where 'no care or preschool' was reported) and the counting unit is 'care instances for families'.

Child level
The Child level contains the demographic characteristics of each selected child (up to two children per family), including age, sex, and country of birth. It also includes information regarding the child's formal education, informal learning and parental engagement, formal and informal care arrangements and unmet need for formal care or preschool. Each selected child is represented as one record and the counting unit is 'children'.

Child Care level
Information on the Child care level includes the type(s) of care used by the child(ren), number of days/hours care used and whether care was used 'in the last week' and/or 'in a usual week'. Also included is weekly cost of care after the CCB and/or CCR are deducted, and whether the CCB and/or CCR was claimed for the care. All selected children are represented on this level (a single record will be present for children where 'no care or preschool' was reported) and the counting unit is 'care instances for children'.

The following diagram shows a view of the four levels, as seen in TableBuilder, including the sub–categories under which the individual data items have been grouped. A complete data item list for TableBuilder can be accessed from the Downloads page.

TableBuilder structure, showing the four levels

MULTI–RESPONSE DATA ITEMS

A number of questions included in the survey allow respondents to provide more than one response. The data items resulting from these questions are referred to as 'multi–response data items' and are identified in the CEaCS TableBuilder data item list with <multiple response> appended to the data item name. Note that the sum of individual multi-response categories will be greater than the total population or number of people applicable to the data item as respondents are able to select more than one response.

For example, for the data item 'Parental involvement in informal learning activities with child last week (0-2 years)' shown below, the total applicable population is 936,500 while the sum of responses to individual categories is 3,576,100.

Example of multi-response data item


SPECIAL CODES

Most data items included in the TableBuilder file include special codes for 'Not applicable', 'Could not be determined', 'Not stated', 'Inadequately described’ and/or 'Other' categories. These are shown in the data item list in the Downloads tab. For continuous items, TableBuilder does not include these codes when calculating sums, medians and means, and ranges. See the example provided under Continuous data items section (below).

The 'Not applicable' category generally represents the number of people who were not asked a particular question or the number of people excluded from the population for a data item when that data was derived (e.g. Year of Arrival in Australia is not applicable for people born in Australia).

The Income Unit level has data items which are specific to mother or father. For most of these data items the 'Not applicable' category represents no mother or father, respectively, in the income unit. However, there are a few mother/father data items where the 'Not applicable' category includes more than no mother or father in the income unit. For example, the 'Not applicable' category for the data item 'Weekly income of mother' refers to 'no source of income for the mother' or 'no mother in the income unit'. Similarly for 'Weekly income of father'. The 'Not applicable' category for the data item 'Weekly income of parent(s)' refers to 'no source of income for the parent(s)'. Note that the Family composition data item can be used to restrict a table to couple families or one parent families.

CONTINUOUS DATA ITEMS

The TableBuilder file contains a number of continuous data items which can have a response value at any point along a continuum. All continuous items are available under Summation Options (on the left hand panel in Data View of TableBuilder), where means, medians and ranges can be calculated.

Many continuous data items include special codes for certain responses (e.g. 999 = 'Not applicable'). Such continuous items have a corresponding categorical item that provides the ability to display data for the special code. Any special codes for continuous data items are displayed on the data item list.

When creating ranges in TableBuilder for such continuous items, special codes will automatically be excluded. Therefore the total will show only 'valid responses' rather than all responses (including special codes). Similarly, means and quantiles calculated for continuous items will only include 'valid responses'.

For example:

It can be seen on the data item list that the data item 'Age child first commenced long day care (in months) - continuous' includes the special codes '998. Could not be determined' and '999. Not applicable'. The data item can be selected from the Child level list of items (on the left hand panel in Data View) to create a table showing data for the special codes. The following shows the tabulation of the data item. The continuous values of the data item are contained in the 'A valid response was recorded' row. 'Could not be determined' includes children for which the age they commenced long day care is not known. 'Not applicable' includes children not currently attending long day care. To show the actual continuous values in a table, a range must be created.

Example of continuous item showing special codes

Here is the same table with a range applied to the continuous values (i.e. the 'valid responses') for the data item, available under Summation Options. Note that the numbers of children for the 'Could not be determined' and 'Not applicable' categories no longer contribute to the table.

Example of continuous item with ranges of valid responses only

Some continuous data items are available as categorical data items with values grouped into categories. For example, cost of care is available as ‘Cost of care in a usual week after the Child Care Benefit and Child Care Rebate - continuous’ and ‘Cost of care in a usual week after the Child Care Benefit and Child Care Rebate' with cost categorised into $25 ranges.


POPULATIONS

The population relevant to each data item is shown in the data item list and should be considered when extracting and analysing the microdata. The actual population count for each data item is equal to the total cumulative frequency minus the 'Not applicable' category.

Generally, all populations, including very specific populations, can be 'filtered' using other relevant data items. For example, if the population of interest is 'Children aged 4-12 years', any data item with that population (excluding the 'Not applicable' category) can be used as a filter - such as the data item 'Whether child attends school'.

While any applicable data item can be used for this filtering process, the CEaCS TableBuilder also includes some data items that have been specifically derived for this purpose. For example, the population data item 'Children aged 0-2 years' can be used rather than the 'Age of child 0-12 years in single years' data item. The specifically derived population data items are listed in the data item list and are included in the 'Populations' folder on the Child level of the TableBuilder product.