Skip to content

Personal Well-being survey user guide

This is user guidance for the Office for National Statistics’s (ONS’s) personal well-being experimental dataset. A dataset was released in February 2012 based on 6 months survey information and further datasets were released annually from July 2012 based on 12 months survey information.

The guide includes background to ONS's annual population survey (APS), how to use the weights and details of the variables available for analysis.

Interviews are carried out between April and March the following year as part of the APS.

The APS is a combined survey of households in the United Kingdom. Its purpose is to provide information on key social and socio-economic variables between the 10-yearly censuses. Other key topics in the survey include education, housing, employment, health and ethnicity.

Personal Well-being frequently asked questions (FAQs)

Surveys using the 4 ONS personal well-being questions as of February 2015 (149 Kb Pdf)

Opinions and Lifestyle Survey: Methodological Investigation into Response Scales in Personal Well-being (485.6 Kb Pdf)

Opinions and Lifestyle Survey: Methodological Investigation into the Societal module (863.5 Kb Pdf)

Three year dataset 2011/2014: Smoking and Personal Well-being in Bristol

On the 29th October ONS released a combined three-year Personal Well-being dataset from the Annual Population Survey (APS) from April 2011 to March 2014 in response to user demand.

The enhanced sample size of this dataset allows for more robust analysis of sub groups in the population and for local areas. For example, the below visualisation shows some key facts about personal well-being and smoking in Bristol.

Showing key facts and the relationship between Personal Well-being and Smoking in Bristol

The personal well-being three year dataset is available to GSS users through contacting the following email address:

Non government users can access the dataset through applying to the End User Licence or Special Licence versions of the dataset through the UK Data Archive under licensed access arrangements. Please contact the UK Data Archive for further information:

Content from the Office for National Statistics.
© Crown Copyright applies unless otherwise stated.