2900.0 - Census of Population and Housing: Understanding the Census and Census Data, Australia , 2016  
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 08/11/2017  First Issue
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Proficiency in Spoken English/Language (ENGLP)

This variable classifies a person's self assessed proficiency in spoken English. It is applicable to all persons.

How the variable is created

This variable is derived from the responses to questions 'Does the person speak a language other than English at home?' and 'How well does the person speak English?' on the Census Household Form. These questions ask if a person speaks a language other than English at home and, if so, how well they speak English. Images of these questions are provided below.

Variable history

A question relating to proficiency in speaking English was first asked in 1981. Prior to this, some censuses had also asked what languages were regularly used. No changes were made for 2016.

Non-response rate

Non-response rate only applies to data items that directly reflect responses to individual Census form questions. Proficiency in Spoken English Language does not have a non-response rate as it is a derived value created during Census processing for applicable persons. For more information, refer to Understanding Census data quality.

Further information

A definition for Proficiency in Spoken English Language is available in the 2016 Census Dictionary.
For more information related to Proficiency in Spoken English Language, see data quality statements for Proficiency in Spoken English and Language Spoken at Home.

Household Census question images

Two Census questions are used to capture data for this variable. Questions 16 and 17 as they appeared on the 2016 Census Household Paper Form:

Image: 2016 Household Paper Form - Question 16. Does the person speak a language other than English at home?
Image: 2016 Household Paper Form - Question 17. How well does the person speak English?
A text only version of the online Census Household form is available from the Downloads tab.