Census of Population and Housing 1986: Postcode Summary File

What is the PCSF?

Dimensions of the data set

Record structure

Indicative Information and Data Code Groups

Description of the summary tables

Errata

Download an .rtf version of documents related to the PCSF

What is the PCSF?

The Postcode Summary File summarises selected characteristics of persons, families and dwellings for each census postcode area as collected from the Census of Population and Housing, 30 June 1986; and allows the aggregation of any combination of census postcode areas.

The File contains, for each census postcode area, a series of counts of census characteristics of persons, families and dwellings grouped to form 46 statistical tables. Counts are on the basis of-place of enumeration, i.e. for each postcode area the counts are of persons who were enumerated in the area on census night.

For census purposes a postcode is assigned to each collection district (CD). Many CDs cross postcode boundaries. In such circumstances, the entire CD was allocated to the postcode in which the greater part of the CD population was estimated to lie. This procedure results in a degree of approximation in census counts relating to postcode areas.

Five postcode are across State borders. In these cases, a portion of the postcode has been allocated to each of the relevant States. Users wishing to work with whole postcodes must aggregate the components of the split postcodes (i.e. 2540, 2620, 3644, 3691 and 5751).

Postcode "0000" has been allocated to the Migratory category.

Note on Random Error

Small non-zero cells on this file have been randomly adjusted in an unbiased manner to avoid the release of identifiable data. This introduced error, in addition to possible respondent and processing errors, means that no significance can be attached to cells of three or less.

Random adjustment of small area data has also the following effects:

  1. more accurate statistics for census postcode areas will be obtained directly from the PCSF than from aggregations of the Collection District Summary File (CCDSF), which contains a larger number of adjusted cells; and

  2. totals between tables may not always be consistent.

Dimensions of the data set

The Postcode Summary File consists of 2432 logical records, one for each Australia Post postcode. Each logical record contains one record of geographic indicative information and 26 records containing counts or totals grouped to form 46 tables.

Codebook

Record structure

For each postcode area on the PCSF there are 27 records each 372 characters long.

The 27 records for each postcode area are identified by a character record type field, containing the values 00-26. Record type 00 contains the geographic indicative information-for the postcode area, in a format described below. Record types 01-26 contain the summary data for the postcode area. A later section describes the format of the summary data in more detail.

For some basic information about the way Census 86 was planned, designed, executed and processed, information on the person and dwelling characteristics included in statistical output and some guidance to other census products, see "Census 86 - How Australia Takes a Census".

Indicative information

The type 00 record is called the geographic indicative record. The structure of this record is as follows:

Description of the Summary Tables

The PCSF contains data from 46 summary tables, which present characteristics of persons, families and dwellings for every census postcode area in Australia. The tabulation basis is place of enumeration.

The 27 records for each postcode area are identified by a two character record type field containing the values 00-26. Record type 00 contains geographic indicative information for the postcode area in a format described above. Record types 01-26 contain the summary data for the postcode area.

Full details of the tables and cells are given in "Condensed Format Postcode Summary Tables Description File (download .rtf version)". The data cell values commence at 1, incrementing by 1 for each cell until 1535 is reached.

Cell numbers 486-7, 491-3, 536, 539-40, 57111- 574-5, 767, 783, 1327, 1435-42 and 1469-74 are not applicable and are set to zero. Cell numbers 675,678, 681,684, 693, 696, 699 and 702 are null cells due to change in design of the data base and are also set to zero.

These 1535 data cells are stored in record types 01-26. Each record consists of the 12 character header (containing the postcode, and record type indicator, followed by 60 cells each 6 characters long (12 + 60 x 6 = 372, the record length).

Record type 01 contains cells 1 - 60
Record type 02 contains cells 61 - 120
Record type 03 contains cells 121 - 180
to
Record type 26 contains cells 1501 - 1535 (ie the first 35 cells)

The remaining 25 cells are filled with the character `9'.

The structure of the data records is as follows:

Field
number
Start
position
LengthName
111State
324Postcode
462Record type
585Space filler
5+J7+6J6Cell (J)
(J = 1 to 60)

The populations covered by each table are as follows:

TableDimensionsNumbers of cellsDescriptionTable population
C0l2 x 24Summary of personsTotal persons
C025 x 210Marital statusPersons aged 15 and over
C0332 x 264Age in yearsTotal persons
C0412 x 224Usual residence: 1986Total persons
C0513 x 226ReligionTotal persons
C064 x 28Aboriginals and Torres Strait IslandersTotal persons
C076 x 212Age of Aboriginals and Torres Strait IslandersAboriginals and Torres Strait Islanders
C0820 x 240BirthplaceTotal persons
C0911 x 333Birthplace of overseas born by period of residenceOverseas born
C107 x 321Proficiency in English by agePersons aged 5 and over, born in non English speaking countries.
C1114 x 228Language other than English spoken at homeAll persons aged 5 and over
C1211 X 11121Birthplace of parents of Australian born personsAustralian born
C134 x 2.8Couples by type of unionAll couples
C143 x 39Labour force status of couplesCouples with spouse present on census night and labour force status stated
C1511 X 888Family type by family income by number of dependent children.Families
C162 x 918Marital status by labour force statusSingle parent families
C177 x 1177Family type by nature of occupancy by family incomePrimary families (excluding those in caravans etc. in caravan parks)
C187 x 856Family type by structure of dwellingPrimary families
C1910 x 220Age left schoolPersons aged 15 and over
*C2018 x 236Type of educational institution being attendedPersons attending an educational institution
C216 x 212Level of qualificationPersons aged 15 and over
C2218 x 236Field of qualificationPersons aged 15 and over
C2316 x 464Income (annual)Persons aged 15 and over; families and households
C243 x 824Marital status of labour force by agePersons aged 15 and over
C258 x 864Labour force status by agePersons aged 15 and over
C2610 x 880occupation by ageEmployed labour force
C2714 x 8112Industry by ageEmployed labour force
C285 x 210Household type of the unemployedUnemployed persons
C295 x 210Industry sectorEmployed labour force
C3012 x 224Method of travel to workEmployed labour force
C3110 x 330Occupation by birthplaceEmployed labour force
C3214 x 570Industry by hours workedEmployed labour force
C335 x 525Hours worked by employed couplesEmployed couples present on census night
C3410 x 440Occupation by status of workerEmployed labour
C355 x 2 + 717Hours workedEmployed labour force
C364 x 28Summary of dwellingsTotal dwellings and persons
C3710 x 220Structure of occupied private dwellingsHouseholds and persons in private dwellings (including caravans etc. in caravan parks
C386 x 212Nature of occupancy Households and persons in private dwellings (excluding caravan etc. in caravan park)
C396 x 212Number of bedroomsHouseholds and persons in private dwellings (excluding caravan etc. in caravan parks
C409 x 19Reason unoccupiedUnoccupied private dwellings (excluding caravan etc. in caravan parks)
C414 x 28Persons aged 60 and over by household typePersons aged 60 and over in private dwellings (including caravans etc. in caravan parks)
C424 x 520Household size by structure of dwellingOccupied private dwelling (including caravans etc. in caravan parks)
C438 x 540 Monthly mortgage payments by structure of dwellingOccupied private dwellings (excluding caravans etc. in caravan parks
C446 x 530Weekly rent by structure of dwellingOccupied private dwellings (excluding caravans etc. in caravan parks)
C455 x 525Household type by structure of dwellingOccupied private dwellings (including caravans etc. in caravan parks)
C466 x 530Number of vehiclesOccupied private Dwellings (including caravans etc. in caravan parks)

Errata

Statistics on type of educational institution being attended

Data in Table C20 on this file concerning type of educational institution being attended are incorrect. Details are in the notes to "Condensed Format Postcode Summary Tables Description File (download .rtf version)"

 

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