National Records of Scotland

Preserving the past, Recording the present, Informing the future

Quality Assurance

Quality Assurance


National Statistics about the population of Scotland are based on data gathered from statistical censuses and surveys, vital events information registered with NRS and data extracted from other organisations’ administrative or management systems. 

Under the Assured Quality Principle (Q3) of the UK Statistics Authority’s Code of Practice for Statistics, producers of Official Statistics are required to explain clearly how they assure themselves that statistics and data are accurate, reliable, coherent and timely. As part of this principle, they state that producers should be transparent about the quality assurance approach taken throughout the preparation of the statistics.

To comply with the Code of Practice for Statistics, we published a paper on information about the quality assurance arrangements for administrative data used to produce the population estimates in June 2016. This paper and more information relating to the Code of Practice for Statistics is available from the National and Official Statistics section of this website.

Quality Assurance of Administrative Data Reports

In January 2015, the UK Statistics Authority published the Administrative Data Quality Assurance Toolkit. For statistical producers, the toolkit provides helpful guidance to assess the quality and suitability of administrative data sources used to  produce statistics. It also supports statistical producers in providing the appropriate documentation to help users understand the strengths and limitations of statistics in relation to their use.

We are currently reviewing our documentation on the quality assurance of administrative data sources used in our population statistics. We intend to publish reports for each of the administrative data sources used in the production of population statistics based on the UK Statistics Authority’s Administrative Data Quality Assurance Toolkit. The first of these will be published in Spring 2020.

All statistical publications