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ELM L.P. Has Dropped

How much does your income increase if you complete an apprenticeship training program or a college, university, or other post-secondary program? Do people leave the province in which they studied after leaving their post-secondary programs? Does university attendance increase social mobility?

These are just a few of the questions that can be answered definitively with the new Education and Labour Market Longitudinal Platform (ELMLP) data environment. ELMLP (pronounced “elm L P”) provides access to three anonymized administrative datasets linked through time:

  • The Post-secondary Student Information System (PSIS)
  • The Registered Apprenticeship Information System (RAIS)
  • The T1 Family File tax records (T1FF)

As of November 2018, ELMLP is available at a Research Data Centre (RDC) for any bona fide researcher who submits a proposal to Statistics Canada and passes a security screening check.

The records in PSIS are available for all public colleges and universities in Canada for the academic years 2009/10 through 2014/15. RAIS data are available for calendar years 2008 to 2016. With these two educational administrative datasets linked to tax files before and after enrolment, we can assess labour market outcomes across disciplines, diplomas, and modes of study like never before.

A recent blog post by my colleague Behnoush discusses the power and possibilities of linked administrative data, highlighting some of the research already underway using RDC datasets. Yet, even within the world of administrative data sources, ELMLP stands out as particularly fruitful for what it can tell us about Canadians’ transitions from education to the job market. To that end, the LMIC team plans to get started by calculating the financial returns of post-secondary education, comparing the relative earnings across different fields of study and types of degrees.

However, there are limitations to the current ELMLP datasets, including lack of information on skills, occupation, and workplace conditions. Despite these limits, ELMLP represents an amazing source of data that can be leveraged into detailed, impactful labour market information.

Check out our latest LMI Insight to get all the details on the new ELMLP data environment, including how to access it, a list of key variables, timelines, and suggestions for quantitative research.


Tony Bonen is LMIC’s Director, Research, Data and Analytics. He leads LMIC’s team of economists, investigating everything from Canada’s diverse labour market information needs to the potential implications of the changing nature of the world of work.

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