Dictionary, Census of Population, 2021
All languages spoken at home

Release date: November 17, 2021Updated on: August 17, 2022

Definition

All languages spoken at home refers to all languages that the person speaks at home on a regular basis at the time of data collection.

Statistical unit(s)

Classification(s)

Reported in

2021, 2016 and 2011 (100% data); 2006 and 2001 (20% sample).

Reported for

Total population

Question number(s)

Direct variable: Question 9a)

Responses

Refer to figures 2.4, 2.4A, 2.4B, 2.4C2.4D2.4E, 2.4F, 2.4G, 2.4H, 2.4I, 2.4J and 2.4K for the detailed list of languages disseminated in the 2021 Census. A comparison of languages disseminated in the 2021, 2016 and 2011 censuses is available in Appendix 2.2.

Remarks

The home language question (Question 9) was divided into two parts:

a) What language(s) does this person speak on a regular basis at home?

b) Of these languages, which one does this person speak most often at home?

"All languages spoken at home" is a direct variable from Question 9a).

The following additional instructions on how to complete the question on the languages spoken on a regular basis at home (Question 9a)) were provided to respondents via a help button accessible in the electronic questionnaire:

Since 2001, the census has measured three home language concepts: all languages spoken at home, the language spoken most often at home and other languages spoken regularly at home. While the concepts themselves remain intact, both the way in which the question is asked and the process to obtain the variables have changed for the 2021 Census.

In 2021, the first part of the question (Question 9a)) asked for all languages spoken on a regular basis at home. Those who did not report English only or French only were asked which language they speak most often at home (Question 9b)). This is different from the 2016 Census, which first asked all respondents to report the language they speak most often at home, and then asked for any other languages they speak on a regular basis at home.

When comparing 2021 Census data on home language with data from 1996 or before, only data on the language spoken most often at home can be used since there was no question regarding languages spoken on a regular basis at home before the 2001 Census.

For more information on language variables, including information on their classifications, the questions from which they are derived, data quality and their comparability with other sources of data, please refer to the Languages Reference Guide, Census of Population, 2021.

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