A Scale of Occupational Prestige in Canada, Based on NOC Major Groups

Goyder, John; Frank, Kristyn
January 2007
Canadian Journal of Sociology;Winter2007, Vol. 32 Issue 1, p63
Academic Journal
Human Resources Development Canada (now Human Resources and Social Development) developed in the early 1990s a classification of occupations having a more sociologically sensitive major groups structure than older codes such as the CCDO of the 1970s or the SOC of the 1980s. This National Occupational Classification (NOC) was updated in 2001, but the system is not used as widely as might be expected. Researchers seem to want major groups that are ordered, such as the Pineo, Porter, McRoberts scale of 1977. In 2005, a national level study of occupational prestige in Canada was collected by telephone interviews. The survey included prestige ratings of the 26 major groups of the NOC. With ratings at the major group level, every occupation in the Canadian labour force can be assigned a prestige score. The focus on NOC major groups also avoids problems that otherwise might arise in disclosure analysis in public use versions of Statistics Canada data sets. The paper describes the construction and validation of the scale.


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