Data Digest LawAccess 2002-2004 Report ( 2007 ) Cite this report
LawAccess NSW 2002-2004
Data Digest Prototype — Taxonomy of Legal Inquiries
|AREA OF LAW|
|Broad||Specific||Detailed Matter Type|
|Domestic violence||Apprehended violence orders||Domestic violence|
|Financial matters||Property||Spouse maintenance|
|Relationships||De facto relationships||Family law - other|
|CRIME||Criminal offences||Drug offences||Offences against persons|
|Fraud & misappropriation||Theft & property offences|
|Justice offences||Other offences|
|Fines||Warrants / extradition|
|Victims of crime||Victims of crime||Coronial inquests|
|CIVIL||Accidents, injury & liability||Accidents||Traffic accident - property damage|
|Personal injury||Other negligence/liability|
|Traffic accident - personal injury|
|Government||Administrative law||Local government|
|Freedom of information||Veterans|
|Human rights||Discrimination/EEO||Human rights|
|Legal system||Complaints about lawyers||Legal services|
|Power of attorney||Wills|
|Civil (other)||Civil (other)|
The chi-square test is a non-parametric test that examines whether there is a significant relationship between two or more categorical variables with data in terms of frequencies. The chi-square test is based on a cross-tabulation of the relevant variables and compares the observed frequencies in each cell of the cross-tabulation with the frequencies expected on the basis of the null hypothesis.6 All of the chi-square tests in this report were two-way, that is, conducted between two variables.
The chi-square test determines whether the relationship between the variables is significant. To determine which cells in the cross-tabulation had higher than expected frequencies, the standard residual for each cell was examined. The standard residual is the difference between the observed and expected frequency, adjusted for the scale effect of the frequencies.
Cells with a standard residual greater than or equal to two were deemed to be significantly higher than expected, and those cells with a standard residual less than or equal to minus two were deemed to be significantly lower than expected. Significantly high and low values are reported in the text.
To examine whether the demographic profile of service users was similar to the demographic profile of the NSW population, index of concentration (IC) measures were calculated for a number of demographic variables for each service.7
The IC indicates the concentration of inquiry activity for a particular demographic group (e.g. females) relative to their proportion of the NSW population according to the 2001 Census.8
An IC of 100 indicates that the proportion of inquiries by a particular group is identical to the proportion of this group in the population. An IC over 100 indicates that the proportion of inquiries from this group is higher than would be expected given their proportion in the population, and an IC under 100 indicates a lower proportion of inquiries than would be expected.
Calculating the Index of concentration (IC)
For each demographic variable (e.g. gender), an IC was calculated for each demographic group within that variable (e.g. men and women). For each demographic group, the IC was calculated by dividing the proportion of inquiries from that demographic group by the proportion of that group in the NSW population according to the 2001 census, and multiplying the result by 100.
The following example illustrates the calculation process.
IC for men and IC for women for inquiries to the NSW Legal Aid Information/Advice Service
Index of concentration for women = Proportion of inquiries from women ÷
Proportion of women in NSW * 100 = (54.4 / 50.6) * 100 = 107
Index of concentration for men = Proportion of inquiries from men ÷
Proportion of men in NSW * 100 = (45.6 / 49.4) * 100 = 92
|In this example, the IC for women (107), which is greater than 100, indicates that women accounted for a higher proportion of inquiries than would be expected given their proportion in the NSW population.
The corresponding IC for men (92), which is under 100, indicates that men made fewer inquiries than would be expected based on their proportion of the NSW population.