Big Village (formerly ENGINE/ORC International) has been appointed by the Australian Sports Commission (ASC) to collect data for AusPlay. The information below explains the best practice methodology used by Big Village to collect AusPlay’s nationally representative data on sport and physical activity participation.
Research and sample design
All Australian residents are in scope of the survey.
For adults aged 15 years or over the owner of the mobile is approached for an interview. Up to five call-backs are made to attempt to obtain an interview.
For each adult respondent who is a parent or guardian of at least one child in their household (aged under 15 years) one child is selected using the last birthday method. The adult respondent completes the AusPlay questionnaire child section as it relates to the selected child.
The annual target sample size for AusPlay is 20,000 adults aged 15 years and over, and approximately 3,600 children aged 0-14, spread evenly across the year.
Under the AusPlay design from 22 October 2015 to 30 June 2019, 50% of the sample came from the landline sample and the other 50% from the mobile sample. As of 1 July 2019, 100% of the sample is from mobile.
AusPlay data is weighted quarterly using a complex weighting method. More information is provided below under Related Downloads, including details of changes made to AusPlay’s weighting from 1 July 2019.
- Overview of 2019-20 AusPlay Sample Design and Weighting Changes
- Technical Details of 2019-20 AusPlay Sample Design and Weighting Changes
- AusPlay Estimate Reliability Checker
- Eighth AusPlay methodology report – July 2022 to June 2023
- Seventh AusPlay methodology report - July 2021 to June 2022
- Sixth AusPlay methodology report – July 2020 to June 2021
- Fifth AusPlay methodology report – July 2019 to June 2020
- Fourth AusPlay methodology report - July 2018 to June 2019
- Third AusPlay methodology report - July 2017 to June 2018
- Second AusPlay methodology report - July 2016 to June 2017
- First AusPlay methodology report - October 2015 to September 2016
The starting point for the AusPlay questionnaire was the previous survey instruments used in the Exercise, Recreation and Sport Survey (ERASS) and the subsequent Australian
Bureau of Statistics (ABS) Multi Purpose Household Survey (MPHS) Participation in Sport and Physical Recreation module. These were used as a reference point, and the ASC sought to retain similar questions in AusPlay where possible. However, the design of AusPlay was primarily guided by the research objectives and the needs of the ASC and the sport sector; in order to maximise the utility of the AusPlay survey vehicle, and to ensure that it covered new and emerging issues in the field.
The downloadable fact sheets below provide details about how AusPlay differs to previous national participation surveys.
- History of participation data for sport and physical recreation in Australia
- History of children’s participation data for sport and physical recreation in Australia
The AusPlay questionnaire consists of a). a core module that, on average, is 13 minutes in duration and collects the same information every quarter; and b). ad-hoc modules of varying topics that can be added to the AusPlay core module on a quarterly basis (maximum two minutes average duration).
Data on these topics is captured through an adults and a children’s questionnaire. The adult questionnaire is for persons aged 15 and over; the children’s questionnaire applies to children aged 0-14. Child questionnaires are completed by the adult respondent if that person is a parent or guardian of a child aged 0-14 in the same household. If a household contains two or more children aged 0-14 then one child is randomly selected for the child interview using the last birthday method. The downloadable documents below show what questions are asked in AusPlay and the flow of question topics in the adults and children’s questionnaires.
- AusPlay questionnaire flow diagrams - Questionnaire version 1
- AusPlay key terms and definitions
- Questionnaire version 1 - October 2015 to June 2016
- Questionnaire version 2 - January 2017 to June 2019
- Questionnaire version 3 - July 2019 to June 2020
- Questionnaire version 4 – July 2020 to June 2022
- AusPlay questionnaire – current
Data is collected for almost 400 different activities, which are self-nominated by survey respondents. These activities are collected as inputs and then collapsed into a smaller number of output activities for reporting purposes. To see the full list of input and output activities captured by AusPlay please download the document below. This list is reviewed and updated regularly.
The design of AusPlay allows for ad-hoc modules containing question topics not included in the core module to be added on a quarterly basis. This allows the ASC and the sport sector to cost-effectively leverage AusPlay for new sport and physical recreation data collection. Parties interested in self-funding an ad-hoc module should contact Insights via the email address below.