Technical notes

All estimates contained in the Dementia Awareness Survey report are based on information obtained from people aged 18 and over from all states and territories. 


The Social Research Centre (SRC) was commissioned by the AIHW to conduct the survey fieldwork. The survey was conducted from 24 July to 15 August 2023. This included a soft launch period from 24 to 25 July 2023, where a small number of people completed the questionnaire to ensure the questionnaire was performing as intended. 

Presentation of estimates

The report presents estimates derived from survey responses weighted to the appropriate Australian population. Proportions are shown as percentages rounded to one decimal place. All differences reported in estimates across groups are statistically significant at the 95% level of confidence unless specified otherwise. 

Means and medians

In some cases, estimates are presented as medians as well as means. This has been done when there was a concern that the means may be skewed by outliers. As the mean is a summary of all data points, it will be distorted by very large outliers. In contrast, the median is simply a description of the mid-point of data – close to half of the responses will be below the median, and half will be above. As a result, the median is not affected greatly by a small number of outliers. 

Throughout the report, medians are only used in cases where the mean was noticeably affected by outliers or a skewed distribution, or when this enabled comparison to other published data. All means and medians in the report have been indicated. 

Degree of correlation

When reporting correlations, it is a perfect correlation when the correlation coefficient is ±1; strong correlation if the coefficient value lies between ± 0.50 and ± 1; medium correlation if the coefficient value lies between ± 0.30 and ± 0.49; small correlation if the coefficient value lies below ± 0.29; no correlation when the value is zero. 

Significance testing

When comparing two different estimates, it is important to determine whether the difference is likely to reflect a true difference in the underlying population or whether it may be due to sampling error. This process is called ‘significance testing’. There are several variables that are used to calculate whether two estimates are significantly different – the size of the difference, the variability in the sample collected (which indicates the level of sampling error present), and the size of the sample. In this report, a difference is deemed to be statistically significant if the chance of seeing the observed difference under the null hypothesis was less than 5% (p <0.05).

All group differences in the survey are statistically significant at the 95% level of confidence (unless otherwise specified). If a difference is statistically significant, it has been marked with a ‘#’ symbol in the supplementary tables. 

Sometimes, even large apparent differences may not be statistically significant. This is particularly the case where there are small sample sizes. Conversely, with a sufficiently large sample, small changes are more likely to be statistically significant.