Dictionary, Census of Population, 2021
Location of study

Release date: November 17, 2021Updated on: September 21, 2022


In the Census of Population, 'Location of study' refers to the province, territory or country of the institution from which a person obtained their highest certificate, diploma or degree.

Location of study refers to the location of the institution granting the certificate, diploma or degree, not the location of the person at the time they obtained the qualification or were attending the institution. The geographic location is specified according to boundaries current at the time the data are collected, not the boundaries at the time of study.

This variable indicates the province or territory (in Canada) or country (outside Canada) of the institution from which the highest postsecondary certificate, diploma or degree was obtained. It is only reported for individuals who had completed a certificate, diploma or degree above the high (secondary) school level.

This variable is reported for persons aged 15 years and over in private households.

Statistical unit(s)


Reported in

2021 and 2016 (25% sample); 2011Footnote 1 (30% sample); 2006 (20% sample).

Reported for

Population aged 15 years and over in private households

Question number(s)

Coded variable: Question 36


Countries outside Canada are classified according to the Standard Classification of Countries and Areas of Interest (SCCAI) 2019. A variant of this classification allows the countries to be aggregated into 19 geographical sub‑regions and 6 geographical macro‑regions.


This variable is important in measuring the national and international flow of individuals with postsecondary (trades, college or university) education who were living in Canada at the time of the 2021 Census of Population, regardless of whether they were Canadian-born or immigrants.

Respondents were asked to indicate the location of study according to the boundaries in existence on May 11, 2021, the reference date for the 2021 Census of Population. For example:


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