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3414.0 - Guide to Migrant Statistical Sources, 2011 (Edition 2)  
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 29/03/2011   
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DEPARTMENT OF IMMIGRATION AND CITIZENSHIP (DIAC)

NAME OF COLLECTION

The Longitudinal Survey of Immigrants to Australia (LSIA)


OVERVIEW

The Longitudinal Survey of Immigrants to Australia (LSIA) is conducted by the Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC). Respondents are selected from DIAC's administrative Settlement Database and followed over time. Responses are analysed to assist research on a range of topics including migration experience, use of support services, education and qualifications, language, employment, health, housing, income and finances, perceptions and demographics.

The aim of LSIA is to provide government and other agencies with reliable data to monitor and improve immigration and settlement policies, programs and services.

Three LSIA surveys have been conducted:

  • LSIA 1 surveyed migrants who arrived in Australia between September 1993 and August 1995, and contained three data collection waves. Wave 1 questioned participants approximately six months after their arrival and included questions about their pre-migration and migration experience during their first six months. Wave 2 questioned participants approximately 18 months after their arrival about the period six to 18 months after migration. Wave 3 questioned participants around 42 months after their arrival about the period 18 to 42 months after migration.
  • LSIA 2 surveyed migrants who arrived in Australia between September 1999 and August 2000, and contains two data collection waves. Wave 1 questioned participants approximately six months after their arrival and included questions about their pre-migration and migration experience during their first six months. Wave 2 questioned participants approximately 18 months after their arrival about the period six to 18 months after migration.
  • LSIA 3 surveyed migrants who either arrived in Australia between December 2004 and March 2005, or were granted their visa onshore between December 2004 and March 2005. The first wave of LSIA 3 was conducted in August 2005 and the second wave in September 2006.


SCOPE

Samples for LSIA 1 and LSIA 2 were drawn from primary applicants on DIAC's Settlement Database. To be eligible for inclusion in the samples, primary applicants had to meet the following criteria:
  • At least 15 years of age
  • Were offshore visaed immigrants
  • Did not have special eligibility visas
  • Were not New Zealand citizens
  • Had an identifiable country of birth

Sample selection for LSIA 3 was similar, except that onshore migrants were included and the minimum age of migrants was 18 years of age.

LSIA 1 and LSIA 2 collected detailed information from primary applicants and migrating unit spouses. Information was collected on behalf of other members of the household and migrating unit. A 'household' comprises all persons living at the same address as the primary applicant and a 'migrating unit' comprises all persons in the household who migrated to Australia as part of the same migration application as the primary applicant.

For LSIA 3 information is only collected from the primary applicant. There are a small number of questions in LSIA 3 where the primary applicant provides a response on behalf of other members of the household. For example, whether their spouse is working or whether their spouse receives any government payments.

Sample sizes were as follows:
  • LSIA 1 – 5,200 primary applicants
  • LSIA 2 – 3,120 primary applicants
  • LSIA 3 – 9,800 primary applicants


DATA DETAIL

LSIA 1 and LSIA 2 cover similar topics including pre-migration experience, the immigration process, initial settlement and location, sponsorship activity, perceptions of Australia, use of support services, return migration and visits, ancestry, religion and ethnicity, citizenship, views on immigration, English language proficiency and learning, qualifications and skills assessment, education and training, labour force activity, health, housing, allowances, income and finances.

Some questions asked in LSIA 1 and LSIA 2 vary slightly due to the emergence of important new issues. A complete list of questions for these surveys is available at the Department of Immigration and Citizenship website via the 'Media Centre' then 'Publications, Research & Statistics' links.

Topics covered by LSIA 3 include reasons for migration, the immigration process, initial settlement and location, sponsorship activity, perceptions of Australia, use of interpreting services, English language proficiency and learning, qualifications and skills assessment, current study, labour force activity, use of qualifications, housing arrangements, community participation, government payments, transferral of assets into Australia and income.

CLASSIFICATIONS
  • Australian Standard Classification of Countries for Social Statistics
  • Australian Standard Classification of Occupations Version 1 for LSIA 1 and Australian Standard Classification of Occupations Version 2 for LSIA 2 and 3
  • The Standard Australian Classifications for Language and Religious Groups are followed, however it should be noted that a range of dialects and religious groups are reported to DIAC which are not covered by the classifications.


GEOGRAPHIC DETAIL

LSIA 1 and LSIA 2 participants had settled in state and territory capital cities or in major urban centres close to capital cities such as Newcastle and Wollongong. Migrants from rural areas were not surveyed. The exception to this is that the LSIA1 also included a small sample from Cairns. Data are released at the statistical subdivision level and is available for collection areas.

LSIA 3 participants were surveyed from all capital cities and some rural areas including the greater Newcastle region, greater Wollongong region, greater Geelong region, south east Queensland and greater Cairns region.


AVAILABILITY OF DATA AND PUBLICATIONS

A range of publications are available online at the Department of Immigration and Citizenship website.


CONTACT DETAILS

Email: research@immi.gov.au



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