Glossary

A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z

A

Age: Age at last birthday, in years.

Allophones: Persons whose mother tongue is neither English nor French.

B

Baby boom: Period following World War II, from 1946 to 1965. This period is characterised by a high number of births.

Base population or starting population: Population at the beginning of a period used as a reference or starting point for a population projection exercise or for a new cycle of population estimates.

C

Censal estimate: The population enumerated in the census, adjusted for net undercoverage. This population is used as the base population for postcensal population estimates, to which the components of population growth are added (or subtracted).

Census agglomeration (CA): Geographic area formed by one or more adjacent municipalities centred on a population centre (known as the core). A census agglomeration must have a core population of at least 10,000, without being a Census metropolitan area (CMA). To be included in the CA, other adjacent municipalities must have a high degree of integration with the core as measured by commuting flows derived from census place of work data.

Census coverage:

Undercoverage: Number of persons who should have been enumerated but were not.
Overcoverage: Number of persons who should not have been counted in the census or who were counted more than once.
Net undercoverage: Difference between undercoverage and overcoverage.

Census division (CD): Group of neighbouring municipalities joined together for the purposes of regional planning and managing common services (such as police or ambulance services). These groupings are established under laws in effect in certain provinces of Canada. For example, a census division might correspond to a county, to a municipalité régionale de comté or a regional district. In other provinces and the territories where laws do not provide for such areas, Statistics Canada defines equivalent areas for statistical reporting purposes in cooperation with these provinces and territories.

Census family: Refers to a married couple (with or without children of either or both spouses), a couple living common-law (with or without children of either or both partners) or a lone parent of any marital status, with at least one child living in the same dwelling. A couple may be of opposite or same sex. “Children” in a census family include grandchildren living with their grandparent(s) but with no parents present.

Census family structure: Refers to the classification of census families into married couples (with or without children of either or both spouses), common-law couples (with or without children of either or both partners), and lone-parent families by sex of parent. A couple may be of opposite or same sex. ‘Children’ in a census family include grandchildren living with their grandparent(s) but with no parents present.

Census metropolitan area (CMA): Geographic area formed by one or more adjacent municipalities centred on a population centre (known as the core). A CMA must have a total population of at least 100,000 of which 50,000 or more must live in the core. To be included in the CMA, other adjacent municipalities must have a high degree of integration with the core as measured by commuting flows derived from census place of work data.

Census subdivision (CSD): Area that is a municipality or an area that is deemed to be equivalent to a municipality for statistical reporting purposes (e.g., as an Indian reserve or an unorganized territory). Municipal status is defined by laws in effect in each province and territory in Canada.

Census year: Period from July 1st of a given year to June 30th of the next year.

Children in census family: Refer to blood, step- or adopted sons and daughters (regardless of age or marital status) who are living in the same dwelling as their parent(s), as well as grandchildren in households where there are no parents present. Sons and daughters who are living with their spouse or common-law partner, or with one or more of their own children, are not considered to be members of the census family of their parent(s), even if they are living in the same dwelling. In addition, those sons and daughters who do not live in the same dwelling as their parent(s) are not considered members of the census family of their parent(s). Sons and daughters pursuing studies or having a summer job and returning to live with their parent(s) through the year are considered as members of the census family of their parent(s).

Civil year, calendar year or year (when not specified): Period from January 1st to December 31st of a given year.

Cohort: Represents a group of persons who have experienced a specific demographic event during a given period which can be a year. For example, the married cohort of 1966 consists of the number of persons who married in 1966. Persons born within a specific year could also be referred to as a generation.

Cohort component method: Method used for population estimates or projections which uses the components of demographic change and a base population as the input. The phrase “cohort component” is usually restricted to methods projecting the future evolution of cohorts by age and sex, as opposed to other methods such as microsimulation that also use components of population growth but where individuals’ demographic destiny is projected.

Common-law union: Union consisting of opposite or same-sex persons living together as a couple, without being legally married.

Components of population growth: Factors underlying population growth and changes in its age structure. They are: births, deaths, immigration, emigration, net non-permanent residents and, for regions in a given territory, internal migration. The population estimates program also distinguishes returning emigrants, net temporarily emigration and residual.

D

Demographic dependency ratio: Number of persons aged 14 years or under and 65 years or over per persons aged between 15 and 64 years.

Demography: Study of human population related to its reproduction process through births, deaths and migratory movements. Demography investigates the state of the population, the different demographic components and the relationships between them.

E

Early neonatal mortality: Mortality in the first week after birth. It is a part of infant mortality.

Economic region (ER): An economic region (ER) is a grouping of complete census divisions (CDs) (with one exception in Ontario) created as a standard geographic unit for analysis of regional economic activity.

Emigrant: Canadian citizen or landed immigrant who left Canada to settle permanently in another country.

Emigration: Departures of Canadian citizens or landed immigrants in Canada to another country that implies a change in the usual place of residence. Emigration can either be permanent or temporary.

Enumerated population: The population of an area according to an official census.

Error of closure: Difference between the postcensal estimate and the population adjusted for net undercoverage according to a census for the same date. This error can be expressed either in numbers or percentage (divided by total population).

F

Fertility: Demographic phenomena in relation with live births which can be considered from the point of view of women, the couple and occasionally men. Fertility is also one of the components of population growth.

G

Generation: Persons born within a given period. In demography, a generation usually refers to the sum of all persons born in a given year. The 2006 generation represents people born between January 1st and December 31st 2006.

I

Immigrant: Refers to a person who is or has ever been a landed immigrant/permanent resident. A landed immigrant/permanent resident is a person who has been granted the right to live in Canada permanently by immigration authorities. Immigrants are either Canadian citizens by naturalization (the citizenship process) or permanent residents (landed immigrants) under Canadian legislation. Some immigrants have resided in Canada for a number of years, while others have arrived recently. Most immigrants are born outside Canada, but a small number are born in Canada.

Immigration: Sum of all entries into Canada of landed immigrants from other countries, involving a change in usual place of residence.

Immigration rate: Number of immigrants divided by the size of the host population during a given period.

Infant mortality: Mortality of children less than one year old.

Intensity: Frequency of occurrence of an event among members of a given cohort.

Intercensal: The period between two censuses.

Internal migration: Sum of all movements of persons within Canada’s geographical boundaries, involving a change in usual place of residence.

International migration: Sum of all movements between Canada and a foreign country which involve a change in the usual place of residence. In the population estimates and projections programs, a distinction is made with regard to immigrants, emigrants, returning emigrants, net temporary emigration and net non-permanent residents.

Interprovincial migration: Sum of all movements from one province or territory to another, involving a change in the usual place of residence.

L

Legal marital status: Refers to the marital status of the person under the law (e.g., single, married, widowed). All persons aged less than 15 are considered as single.

Married (and not separated): This category includes persons whose opposite- or same-sex spouse is living, unless the couple is separated or a divorce has been obtained. Also included are persons in civil unions.
Widowed (including living common law): This category includes persons who have lost their legally-married spouse through death and have not remarried. Those who live with a common-law partner are included in this category.
Separated (including living common law):  This category includes persons currently legally married but who are no longer living with their spouse (for any reason other than illness, work or school) and have not obtained a divorce. Those who live with a common-law partner are included in this category.
Divorced (including living common law): This category includes persons who have obtained a legal divorce and have not remarried. Those who live with a common-law partner are included in this category.
Single (including living common law): This category includes persons who have never married (including all persons less than 15 years of age). It also includes persons whose marriage has been legally annulled who were single before the annulled marriage and who have not remarried. Those who live with a common-law partner are included in this category.

Life expectancy: A statistical measure derived from the life table indicating the average number of years of life remaining for a population at a specific age, if the individuals comprising that population would experience the age-specific mortality rates observed in a given year, throughout their lives.

Life table: A description of the extinction, age by age, of a synthetic cohort of individuals according to the mortality rates observed a given year.

Lone-parent family: A father or mother, with no married spouse or common-law partner present, living in a dwelling with one or more children.

M

Marital status: Refers to whether or not a person aged 15 or over is living in a common-law union as well as the legal marital status of those who are not living in a common-law union.

Married (and not separated): This category includes persons whose opposite- or same-sex spouse is living, unless the couple is separated or a divorce has been obtained. Also included are persons in civil unions.
Living common law: This category includes persons who are living with a person of the opposite sex or of the same sex as a couple but who are not legally married to that person. It includes situations where the members of such a couple are living apart temporarily because of illness, work or school.
Widowed (not living common law): This category includes persons who have lost their legally-married spouse through death and who have not remarried. Those who live with a common-law partner are not included in this category.
Separated (not living common law): This category includes persons currently legally married but who are no longer living with their spouse (for any reason other than illness, work or school) and have not obtained a divorce. Those who live with a common-law partner are not included in this category.
Divorced (not living common law): This category includes persons who have obtained a legal divorce and have not remarried. Those who live with a common-law partner are not included in this category.
Single (not living common law): This category includes persons who have never married (including all persons less than 15 years of age). It also includes persons whose marriage has been legally annulled who were single before the annulled marriage and who have not remarried. Those who live with a common-law partner are not included in this category.

Mean age: The mean age of a population is the average age of all its members.

Median age: Age “x” that divides a population in two groups of the same population size, one group being older than age “x” and the other group being younger than age “x”.

Metropolitan influence zone: Category assigned to a municipality not included in either a census metropolitan area (CMA) or a census agglomeration (CA). A municipality is assigned to one of four categories depending on the percentage of its resident employed labour force who commute to work in the core of any census metropolitan area or census agglomeration.

Microsimulation: Unlike population estimates and projections done using the cohort component method, microsimulation simulates the demographic destiny of individuals one by one. The method is based on multiple random drawing at the individual level rather than on aggregated data applied at the population group level.

Migration: Geographic movements of persons of a given population, involving a change in usual place of residence.

Migratory flows: Refers to the movement of persons from one geographical area to another (often involves a change in usual residence from one region to another). Some flows result in an increase in population for a specific area (e.g. immigration, return emigration, inflows of non-permanent residents and internal migrants), while others result in a decrease in population (e.g. emigration, outflows of non-permanent residents and internal migrants).

Migratory increase: Variation in the population counts over a given period resulting from the difference in the number of in-migrants that settle within a given geographic area and the number of out-migrants from the same geographic area.

N

Natural increase: Variation in the population counts over a given period resulting from the difference between births and deaths.

Neonatal mortality: Mortality in the first month after birth. It is a part of infant mortality.

Net emigration or total emigration: Number of emigrants minus the number of returning emigrants plus net temporary emigration.

Net internal migration: Sum of subprovincial and interprovincial net migrations.

Net international migration: Variation obtained according to the following formula: (Immigrants + returning emigrants + net non-permanent residents) – (emigrants + net temporary emigration).

Net interprovincial migration: Difference between in-migrants and out-migrants for a given province or territory.

Net migration: For a given region and period of time, difference between immigration and emigration or difference between in and out-migrants.

Net non-permanent residents: Variation in the number of non-permanent residents between two dates.

Net subprovincial migration: Difference between in-migrants and out-migrants for a given subprovincial region.

Net temporary emigration: Variation in the number of temporary emigrants between two dates.

Net total migration: Sum of international and internal net migrations.

Non-permanent residents: Persons from another country who stay legally and temporarily in Canada as the owners of a Work or Study Permit, or who are refugee claimants, and any family members living in Canada with them.

P

Parity: Birth order of children.

Person temporarily abroad: Canadian citizen or landed immigrant who left Canada to settle temporarily in a foreign country (temporary emigrant).

Person-year: Total number of years lived in a given status by the individuals who make up the population in a given period of time, usually a year.

Population: Estimated population and population according to the census are both defined as being the number of Canadians whose usual place of residence is in that area, regardless of where they happened to be on Census Day. Also included are any Canadians staying in a dwelling in that area on Census Day and having no usual place of residence elsewhere in Canada, as well as those considered non-permanent residents.

Population aging: Demographic phenomenon involving an increase in the proportion of elderly persons in a given population.

Population estimates: Population counts, geographic distribution and demographic characteristics at a different reference date than the census.

Postcensal: Population estimates produced by using data from the most recent census adjusted for net census undercoverage and estimates of the components of demographic change since that last census. Those postcensal estimates can either be preliminary, revised or definitive.
Intercensal: Population estimates derived by using postcensal estimates and data from the census counts (adjusted for net undercoverage) preceding and following the year in question.

Population growth: Variation, either positive or negative, in a population size over a given period of time, usually one year. Population growth can also be calculated by summing natural and migratory increases.

Population projections: Exercise that aims to produce a number of possible future trends of the population, based on a base population and a set of assumptions related to population or socioeconomic components. Projections can be computed using the cohort component method or by microsimulation. Population projections are not predictions.

Population pyramids: Bar chart that shows the distribution of a population by age and sex.

Post-neonatal mortality:Mortality between the ages of one month and one year. It is a part of infant mortality.

Precocity error: Difference between the preliminary and final estimate divided by the total population of the relevant geographical area. It can be calculated for both population estimates and for each component of population growth.

Probability: Ratio of the events that occurred in a given period of time to the individuals present at the beginning of the period.

Projection scenario: Set of different assumptions used to compute a population projection.

Proportion ever married: Measure of the prevalence of marriage in a generation or a synthetic cohort. It is usually equivalent to the proportion remaining single at an age such as 50 after which first marriages are rare.

R

Rate: Refers to the ratio of the number of events (births, deaths, migrations, etc.) that occurred in a population over a given period to the average population during that period. Crude rates are rates computed for an entire population. Specific rates are rates computed for a specific subgroup. Thus, rates can be age-specific, sex-specific, etc.

Replacement level: Average number of births per woman necessary to assure the long-term replacement of a population for a given mortality level in the absence of migration. Currently, the replacement level in Canada is about 2.1 children per woman.

Residual: Difference between population growth as measured by population estimates of two consecutive years and the sum of the components. This difference results from the distribution of the error of closure between years within quinquennial period.

Returning emigrant: Canadian citizen or landed immigrant who previously emigrated from Canada and who has returned to settle permanently in Canada.

Reverse Record Check (RRC): One of the surveys designed to estimate census coverage errors. The RRC provides an independent estimates of census undercoverage.

S

Sex ratio: Ratio of males to females in a given population. Generally this ratio is expressed as an index, where the number of females serves as the base, equalling 100.

Standardisation: Mathematical procedure designed to adjust rates so it is possible to compare different populations regardless of their respective age structure.

Subprovincial migration: Sum of all movements from one region to another within the same province or territory involving a permanent change of usual residence.

Survival ratio: Probability of a survivor of exact age x to survive at least to age x+a. It is the complement to 1 of the probability of dying.

Synthetic cohort: “Hypothetical” cohort comprised of data from actual cohorts that are present, at different ages, in a given year.

T

Tempo: Distribution over time, within a cohort or a generation, of demographic events corresponding to the phenomenon being analysed.

Total divorce rate:Proportion of marriages that would finish in divorce before the 25th anniversary according to the divorce conditions of a given year. It is the result of the sum of the divorce rates by length of marriage expressed per 10,000 population.

Total fertility rate: Sum of age-specific fertility rates during a given year. It indicates the average number of children that a generation of women would have if, over the course of their reproductive life, they experienced the age-specific fertility rates observed during the year considered.

Total first marriage rate:Proportion of males or females marrying before their 50th birthday according to nuptiality conditions in a given year. It is the result of the sum of the rates by age at first marriage observed a given year.

V

Vital Statistics: Includes all the demographic events (births, deaths, marriages and divorces) for which there exists a legal requirement to inform the Provincial or Territorial Registrar’s Office.

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