DataPreview Portal Questions

What is the best browser to use to explore the DataPreview Portal?

The DataPreview Portal works best with Chrome and Firefox. Mac OS users can also use Safari. Internet Explorer appears to have limited functionality, and is currently not recommended.

How can the variables list be searched or filtered?

From the Variables search, accessed through the DataPreview Portal, full-text searches can be carried out on either the variable Name or Label. The variables can also be filtered by classification through the clickable boxes on the left. A Help button is available on the DataPreview Portal page, next to the main search bar, with detailed instructions. To see all of the questionnaires used by the CLSA, you can visit the Data Collection Tools under the Researchers tab.


What variables are included in each questionnaire?

To obtain all the variables contained in a questionnaire, type the two or three letter prefix (e.g. SDC for Socio-demographic Variables) into the full-text search box in the Variables listing, under “Variable properties > Name”. You can also use more general terms such as ‘food’, ‘work’, etc. (under “Variable properties > Label”) to find variables related to those terms, however, search terms are not exhaustive. For more information on the variables included in a questionnaire, please visit the Data Collection Tools under the Researchers tab.

How are multiple choice questions represented as variables in the CLSA dataset?

Multiple-choice questions are represented by either a single variable or multiple variables, depending on what the question allows:

- A question allowing only one response is represented by a single variable that can take on multiple values. Open-text responses are permitted in many questions; common and distinct responses are recoded to create new categories within the variable itself.

-  For a question allowing multiple responses, each possible response category is assigned its own binary variable. Open-text responses are also permitted in many of these questions; common and distinct options are also recoded to create additional variables within the question scope. The number of variables corresponding to that question matches the number of response options. 

Where can I find information about response categories for multiple choice questions?

In the variable view, clicking on the name of each variable reveals information that is more detailed. For example, under Categories, the variable information page will include the following information:

•           Name:  the value entered for a response in the questionnaire;

•           Label:  the response (or response category) corresponding to each value (Name);

•           Missing:  values corresponding to a question not answered, (don’t know or not applicable, refused).

Where can I find supplementary information about each of the variables?

Clicking on the variable name, in the variable view reveals more detailed information about that variable. (This function is not available for all study variables.) This information includes the question pertinent to the variable, the variable label, a list of the response option categories and some automatically generated summary statistics. In some instances, additional notes on skip patterns or references are included as well.