Firstly, a little background information. The Census Explorer is based on the demographic data that the Australian Bureau of Statistics collects every four years. The most recent census was completed in 2006, so this is the data that you are exploring. If you are interested in viewing historical census data, please visit the Australian Bureau of Statistics Census Data section.
How to get started?
We've tried to make the Census explorer as easy to use as possible, but there are a few tips and tricks for getting the most out of it that aren't immediately obvious. So let's get started!
1. Choose a topic
In the image below we've scrolled through the topic drop down box and selected volunteer work from the list of options. You can try whatever topic is of interest to you.
2. Choose up to 10 suburbs
Once your topic is selected the next step is to choose the suburbs that you'd like to compare. You can choose up to 10 suburbs at a time. You can choose your suburb by typing in the name of the suburb. Alternatively, you can browse by area and make use of the map to check that you have the right place. In this example, we've typed in Port Macquarie and browsed the Wollongong area to find Dapto.
3. View Statistics
Once you're done with your selections, click the big orange 'view statistics' button.
4. Table layout page
Now that you've selected the topic and suburbs you'd like to explore and clicked 'view statistics' you should now see a table of statistics.
What do the colours mean?
The colours are used to flag when a particular item is statistically significant. In this case, the colours are letting us know that there are a high proportion of volunteers in Port Macquarie. If you scroll over the numbers with your mouse a yellow pop-up with more information will be displayed. Below is an example:
How can I compare my suburb/s with the rest of NSW?
This is a nifty trick that is a little hidden in the table view. You may have noticed the grey '+' symbol beside each set of numbers? Clicking on this will take you to a page where you can compare how each suburb in NSW ranks.
As you can see, the suburbs you have selected will appear first in the list, followed by a list of all NSW suburbs in order of rank from highest to lowest.
Can I also compare the topic I've chosen on a map, instead of a list?
Indeed you can. You can view a map of your topic by clicking the "view a map of this statistic" link at the top of the page above. You can also get a map by clicking on the grey NSW map symbol that appears below the '+' symbol, next to each statistic on the table view.
Once you have the map displayed, you can zoom in and out and click on different areas to view more information about them. Statistically significant places will be lighter in colour, like the suburbs of Port Macquarie and Broken Hill below:
Click the 'back to statistics table' link when you are finished with the map and feel free to change your topic or view a set of different suburbs.
We hope you enjoy the Census Explorer!