This website is no longer being updated. Please go to GOV.SCOT

Scottish Household Survey - How to Get Results

Scottish Household Survey logo


Results from the Scottish Household Survey are available through a number of different ways. Further information is available below for the following topics:

  Overview | Publications and Tables | Replicating Tables | How to Access the Data |
  Data Sources and Suitability | Data Release Procedures | Revisions and Corrections | Copyright Notice

Data Sources and Suitability

The purpose of this page is to provide information on the suitability of SHS data for specific analysis and other sources of comparative information. The aim is to direct users to valuable sources of information and draw attention to any interesting aspects or peculiarities they contain so that future utilisation of the data is well-informed.

Please note this content is very much a work-in-progress, so we would value any comments you may have for suggested improvements - see our Contacts page for contact details.

Data Sources and Suitability - Quality Measures

The following document provides a wealth of information about various quality measures of the SHS, covering:

relevance, accuracy, comparability, quality assurance, data availability, geographical availability, disagreggations, concepts and definitions and timeliness of data.

Please see the following document for further information:

Data Availability

Geographical Availability

Although the SHS has a large sample that covers the whole of Scotland, it has some geographical limitations because of the sample sizes in small local authorities and because it is designed to be representative only at national and local authority level.

In particular, the SHS is designed to be nationally representative every quarter, representative for larger Local Authorities (LA) every year, and all LA's (regardless of size) over a two-year period.

It is not appropriate to undertake geographical analysis below local authority level since the sampling techniques used in some local authorities cannot guarantee representativeness in smaller areas.


National-level estimates of SHS data are published through the Annual Report - please see our Annual Report publication summary page for further information.


Sub-national estimates of SHS data are available on either an annual or bi-annual basis.

For larger local authorities in Scotland we can typically provide estimates for any single year of SHS data - the most recent release was for 2007 data.

For all other local authorities, the SHS only provides robust estimates over each survey two-year sweep. The most recent release was for 2005-06 data, with the next update being 2007-2008 data to be published in August 2009.

Please see our Annual Report publication summary page for further information.


The General Household Survey is an inter-departmental multi-purpose survey carried out by the Office for National Statistics on approximately 9,000 households and 16,000 adults aged 16 and over across Great Britain.