This second volume of the final report on the Census of Population and Housing 1995 focuses on the fertility patterns of the enumerated female segment of the population. As will be explained later on, various census questions were utilised in order to derive the analysis being presented in this volume.
The census tables being presented here were derived from the responses to several questions on the demographic characteristics of the population, as well as from a few questions that specifically focused on fertility issues. The former type of questions referred to gender, age at the time of the Census, legal marital status and year of the first marriage. The fertility-related questions referred to the number of children ever born and the year when the first child was born. Responses to these last two questions were required from female respondents only.
The tables were produced in respect of the enumerated population, the Maltese and the non-Maltese population in order to facilitate the analysis of changes that are specific to the native population of the Maltese Islands as distinct from the foreign element of the enumerated population. The objective of this Census tabulation plan was to provide more Census reports for both longitudinal and period analysis, thereby facilitating behavioural-oriented research in this field. Therefore, several reports are given by age and by year of birth of mother, as well as by age at the time of the first marriage and year of the first marriage. The data reflect the total number of mothers irrespective of their age. However, it is important to point out that the analysis on the educational attributes of mothers is restricted to that subgroup of women aged 16 years and over.
Although detailed definitions and extensive methodological explanations were provided in volume one of this report, it is felt necessary to provide additional methodological notes on some of the most important and specific fertility-related questions in this volume in order to serve as easy reference to the reader.
1.1 Legal Marital Status
This question dealt with the individual's de jure marital status. Thus respondents had to classify themselves as being single (never married), married, separated, annulled or divorced but not re-married, widowed but not remarried and, re-married as the case may have been. Those who were never married but cohabiting were indicated as single. Moreover, those who were separated but living in a consensual union with another person were denoted as separated. Furthermore, any widowed persons who were cohabiting with other persons were classified as widowed.
1.2 Year of First Marriage
This information was sought from ever-married women only and independently of their legal marital status at the time of the Census.
1.3 Number of Children Ever Born
Information was sought from all women whether married or not. All children born alive during the lifetime of the female segment of the population up to Census date were counted. Any foetal deaths were excluded. The recorded number comprised all live-born children born of any marriage, consensual union or other unions or by a single mother and regardless of whether these children were alive or dead or where they may have been living on census date.
1.4 Year of Birth of Eldest Child
The year of birth of the first-born child, independently of whether this child was still alive or not, was requested.
Volume 2 Tables Fertility
Volume 2 Chapter 2: Fertility