Try our new website. Please send us your feedback.

 

Canadian census questions since confederation

The following table indicates all questions asked in the Census of population conducted in Canada every five years since 1951. It indicates in which census (retrospective to 1871) each question was introduced, and in which of the censuses in the last 30 years the question occurs.

Note: 2006 information is preliminary.

 

Table of Contents:

 


Demographic characteristics First time in census
[before 1971]
1971 1976 1981 1986 1991 1996 2001 2006
Name 1871 X X X X X X X X
Relationship to person 1 1891 X X X X X X X X
Date of birth 1871 X X X X X X X X
Sex 1871 X X X X X X X X
Marital status 1871 X X X X - - - -
Legal marital status - - - - - X X X X
Common law status - - - - - X X X X
Mobility - place of residence 1 year ago - - - - - X X X X
Mobility - place of residence 5 years ago 1961 X X X X X X X X
Number of moves since previous census - X - - - - - - -
Date of first marriage 1941 X - X - - - - -
Number of children ever born 1941 X - X - X - - -
Top of Page
Ethno-cultural and language characteristics First time in census
[before 1971]
1971 1976 1981 1986 1991 1996 2001 2006
Knowledge of official languages 1901 X - X X X X X X
Knowledge of non-official languages - - - - - X X X X
Home language - X - X X X X X X
Mother tongue 1901 X X X X X X X X
Language used at work - - - - - - - X X
Place of birth 1871 X - X X X X X X
Place of birth of parents 1891 X - - - - - X X
Citizenship 1901 X - X X X X X X
Landed immigrant status - - - - - X X X X
Period/year of immigration 1901 X - X X X X X X
Ethnic origin 1871 X - X X X X X X
Registered Indian status - - - - X X X X X
Indian Band/First Nation - - - - - X X X X
North American Indian, Métis, Inuit (self-reporting) - - - - X - X X X
Population group (visible minority) - - - - - - X X X
Religion 1871 X - X - X - X -
Top of Page
Activity limitations/difficulties/reductions First time in census
[before 1971]
1971 1976 1981 1986 1991 1996 2001 2006
At home - - - - X X X X X
At school or at work - - - - X X X X X
In other activities - - - - X X X X X
Long-term disabilities or handicaps - - - - X X X - -
Difficulties with daily activities 2001 - - - - - - X X
Top of Page
Schooling First time in census
[before 1971]
1971 1976 1981 1986 1991 1996 2001 2006
Highest level of elementary or secondary schooling 1941 X X X X X X X X
Years of schooling (university) - - X X X X X X -
Years of schooling (other) - - X X X X X X -
School attendance 1871 X X X - X X X X
University degrees - - X X X X X X X
Field of specialization - - - - X X X X X
Completion of full-time vocational course (3 months or more) - X - - - - - - -
Province/country of highest degree - - - - - - - - X
Province of elementary or secondary (or outside Canada) - X - - - - - - -
Top of Page
Unpaid work/Household activities First time in census
[before 1971]
1971 1976 1981 1986 1991 1996 2001 2006
Hours doing unpaid housework last week 1996 - - - - - X X X
Hours caring for children without pay last week 1996 - - - - - X X X
Hours providing unpaid care/assistance to seniors last week 1996 - - - - - X X X
Top of Page
Labour market activities First time in census
[before 1971]
1971 1976 1981 1986 1991 1996 2001 2006
Actual hours worked last week 1951 X X X X X X X X
Usual hours worked each week 1911 X - - - - - - -
Last date of work - X - X X X X X X
Industry 1901 X - X X X X X X
Occupation 1871 X - X X X X X X
Class of worker 1891 X - X X X X X X
Weeks worked in reference year 1911 X - X X X X X X
Full-time/part-time work - X - X X X X X X
Temporary lay-off/absent from job - X X X X X X X X
New job to start in four weeks or less - - X X X X X X X
Looked for work in past 4 weeks 1961 X X X X X X X X
Availability for work - - X X X X X X X
Incorporation status - X - X X X X X X
Top of Page
Journey to work First time in census
[before 1971]
1971 1976 1981 1986 1991 1996 2001 2006
Place of work - X - X X X X X X
Mode of transportation to work - - - - - - X X X
Top of Page
Income First time in census
[before 1971]
1971 1976 1981 1986 1991 1996 2001 2006
Income in year previous to census year - X - X X X X X X
Wages and salaries 1901 X - X X X X X X
Net non-farm self-employment income - X - X X X X X X
Net farm self-employment income - X - X X X X X X
Family allowances - X - X X X X - -
Federal child tax credits/benefits - - - - X X X X X
Old age security (OAS) and Guaranteed income supplement (GIS) - X - X X X X X X
Benefits from Canada or Quebec pension plan (CPP/QPP) - X - X X X X X X
Benefits from Employment insurance - X - X X X X X X
Other income from government sources - X - X X X X X X
Interest and dividends - X - X X X X X X
Other investment income - X - X X X X X X
Retirement pensions, superannuation, annuities - X - X X X X X X
Other money income - X - X X X X X X
Income tax paid - - - - - - - - X
Top of Page
Family and household First time in census
[before 1971]
1971 1976 1981 1986 1991 1996 2001 2006
Agricultural operator - - - - - X X X X
Household maintainer(s) - - - X X X X X X
Household head (Person 1) 1941 X X X X X X X X
Family head 1921 X - - - - - - -
Tenure (owned/rented) 1921 X X X X X X X X
Tenure (condominium) - - - X X X X X X
Tenure (band housing) - - - - - X X X -
Presence of mortgage 1941 X - X X X X X X
Who holds first mortgage - X - - - - X X -
No. of persons per household - X X X X X X X X
Shelter costs - renter 1941 X - X X X X X X
Payment of reduced rent (e.g. government subsidized housing) - X - - - - - - -
Automobiles available for personal use 1941 X - - - - - - -
Vacation home ownership - X - - - - - - -
Major home appliances 1931 X - - - - - - -
Yearly payments - X - X X X X X X
Yearly payments - electricity - X - X X X X X X
Yearly payments - oil, coal, wood, etc. - X - X X X X X X
Yearly payments - gas - X - X X X X X X
Yearly payments - water - X - X X X X X X
Yearly payments - shelter costs - owner - - - X X X X X X
Yearly payments - shelter costs - owner: mortgage - - - X X X X X X
Yearly payments - shelter costs - owner: property taxes - - - X X X X X X
Yearly payments - shelter costs - owner: condominium - - - X X X X X X
Yearly payments - shelter costs - owner: condominium fees - - - - - X X X X
Top of Page
Dwelling First time in census
[before 1971]
1971 1976 1981 1986 1991 1996 2001 2006
Number of rooms 1941 X - X X X X X X
Number of bedrooms - X - - - X X X X
Number of bathrooms - - - X - - - - -
Period of construction 1941 X - X X X X X X
Condition of dwelling - - - X - X X X X
Type of dwelling 1941 X X X X X X X -
Value of dwelling 1941 X - X X X X X X
Number of dwellings in the building 1941 X - - - - - - -
Garage - X - - - - - - -
Piped running water in building 1941 X - - - - - - -
Bath or shower 1941 X - - - - - - -
Use of flush toilet in building 1941 X - - - - - - -
Unoccupied dwelling, reason for - - X - X - - - -
Seasonal/marginal dwellings - - - X X X X X -
Length of occupancy 1941 X - X - - - - -
Source of water supply - X - - - - - - -
Method of sewage disposal - X - - - - - - -
Principal type of heating equipment 1941 X - X X - - - -
Principal fuel used for - cooking - X - - - - - - -
Principal fuel used for - heating 1941 X - X X - - - -
Principal fuel used for - water heating - X - X - - - - -
Top of Page
Coverage First time in census
[before 1971]
1971 1976 1981 1986 1991 1996 2001 2006
Did you leave anyone out? - X - X X X X X X
Household roster - X - - - X X X X
Number of temporary residents - X - X X X X X X
Number of usual residents - X - X X X X X X
Personal information available for public release in 92 years - - - - - - - - X
Top of Page
Other First time in census
[before 1971]
1971 1976 1981 1986 1991 1996 2001 2006
Wartime service 1951 X - - - - - - -

Source: 2001 census handbook./ Statistics Canada. Ottawa, Ont.: Statistics Canada, 2002 (STC. 92-379-XIE) pp. 29-34