ACLD FAQs
 

What type of information is available in the ACLD?
What sort of questions does the ACLD address?
What is the difference between cross-sectional and longitudinal data?
Can I obtain individual tables from the ACLD without purchasing TableBuilder?
Which TableBuilder login should I use?
Is there any other form of access to the ACLD microdata than through TableBuilder?
Where can I go for more information?

What type of information is available in the ACLD?

The 2011-2016 ACLD brings together a representative five per cent sample from the 2011 Census with corresponding records from the 2016 Census, producing a dataset with over 1.2 million records. Similarly, the 2006-2011 ACLD brings together a five per cent sample - approximately 1 million records - from the 2006 Census with corresponding records from the 2011 Census.

The ACLD contains information directly collected about the person in each relevant Census, such as age, sex, country of birth and labour force status. It also contains information about the person's dwelling, household and family (e.g. type of dwelling in which the person lives). In addition, information about the person's co-habiting parents or spouse has been attached to the person record. For example, if the person has a spouse in the household, information collected in the Census about their spouse has been associated with their own record (e.g. labour force status of spouse).

For further information, refer to the Data Item Lists for both the 2006-2011 ACLD and the 2011-2016 ACLD.

What sort of questions does the ACLD address?

The ACLD has been used to investigate such questions as:

  • What are the characteristics of persons transitioning into aged care facilities? How do they compare to those that don’t go into aged care facilities?
  • What are recent school leavers up to?
  • How is family structure changing over time? What are the characteristics of persons who are transitioning into single parenthood?

What is the difference between cross-sectional and longitudinal data?

Cross-sectional data is information collected about a population at a point in time. Some cross-sectional collections, like the Census, are repeated and can provide information on aggregate level change. Cross-sectional Census data can be used to answer questions like:
    • What proportion of employed people are in professional occupations?
    • How has the rate of volunteering changed between 2011 and 2016?

Longitudinal data refers to information at the individual level reported over time. Longitudinal (or panel) surveys typically collect information from the same sample of persons, households or other entities at regular time intervals. In the ACLD, over 1.2 million records from the 2011 Census were brought together with corresponding records from the 2016 Census, using secure data linkage techniques.

The longitudinal data in the ACLD can be used to measure transitions and answer questions like:
    • What can we learn about groups whose self-identification as Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander changed between 2011 and 2016?
    • In 2016, what was the labour force status of people who were unemployed in 2011?
    • What proportion of people who were volunteers in 2011 were also volunteers in 2016?

Can I obtain individual tables from the ACLD without purchasing TableBuilder?

Selected tables covering, for example, labour force status; volunteer status and Year 11 and Year 12 student outcomes, are available in Australian's journeys through life: Stories from the Australian Census Longitudinal Dataset, 2011-2016, (cat. no. 2081.0).

Customised tables can be provided on a fee-for-service basis. For details about this service, please go to Information Consultancy Services or call 1300 135 070. Check the TableBuilder Data Items list for a full range of variables.

Which TableBuilder login should I use?

The ABS supports two versions of TableBuilder; one for the 2006, 2011 and 2016 Census datasets and one for all other datasets, including the ACLD. Users can register from the How to apply for Microdata page and login from the Registration Centre.

Is there any other form of access to the ACLD microdata than through TableBuilder?

The ACLD is available in the ABS DataLab as a detailed microdata product that enables approved researchers to unlock the full power of the longitudinal Census file, using a range of statistical software.

Access to the DataLab is restricted to authorised users from state and federal governments, and universities.

All output from the DataLab is cleared by an ABS officer before being released.

For further information see the About the DataLab page.

The ABS offers a statistical consultancy service for a fee for those interested in tailored analysis from the ACLD. For details about this service, please go to Information Consultancy Services or call 1300 135 070.

Where can I go for more information?

For more information about the ACLD, visit the ACLD homepage.

Visit the About the DataLab page to find out more about using DataLab.

For information about data integration, and how the ABS keeps information safe and secure, please see the Data Integration FAQs and the Privacy, Secrecy, and Information Security page.