Institute of Epidemiology & Health Care



We enable research using the Office for National Statistics (ONS) Longitudinal Study - the largest nationally representative longitudinal dataset in the UK

Longitudinal studies follow the lives of individuals over a long period of time, showing us how people are affected by changes in society. The ONS Longitudinal Study contains the census data and some life events data of approximately one million sample members, collected over 40 years. This service is free to the user.

About the ONS Longitudinal Study

About the ONS Longitudinal Study

Find out more about the study

About the ONS Longitudinal Study

Using the ONS Longitudinal Study

Find out how to access and use the data

Data dictionary

Data dictionary

Look up the variables in the study

Celsius Resources


Information and guidance to help you use the data

Research at Celsius


Current and past LS projects and the outputs resulting from this research

About Celsius


Meet the team

Wordpress dashboard

Linking our Lives Blog

Our blog showcases outstanding research using the LS 


Linking our Lives Podcast

In conversation with researchers and users of LS research


Research and policy briefs

Policy and research briefing notes on research using the LS



New information for LS researchers: derived variables list (PDF)

Information on the syntax files that are available for LS researchers to use.


Why data is key to reducing inequalities for the care experienced

In Episode 4 of the Linking our Lives Podcast, Professor Amanda Sacker from UCL is in conversation with the UK National Statistician Sir Ian Diamond about her high profile research using the ONS Longitudinal Study and funded by the Nuffield Foundation to look at the outcomes of care experienced people. 


Documenting lives: using the ONS LS to test the representativeness of TV's Up series

In Episode 3 of Series 1 of Linking our Lives, Aly Sizer from the Centre for Longitudinal Study Information and User Support (CeLSIUS) at UCL talks about her research on The Up-Series generation in the ONS Longitudinal StudyShe explains the inspiration behind her research using the ONS Longitudinal Study to see if the children selected for the well-known and popular Up series of television documentaries were representative of the wider population and reveals what she found and what it tells us.  


You can now view the recording of our 13th September 2021 event: CeLSIUS: ONS Longitudinal Study online training

 This event included the following presentations and practical sessions:

  • What is the ONS LS?
  • How do I get to use it?
  • What research can I do?
  • Bespoke synthetic data in the ONS LS
  • Practical 1: Live synthetic SYLLS analysis using STATA
  • Practical 2: Applying to use the ONS LS and becoming an ONS accredited researcher


A gold mine of information: 50 years of the ONS LS

The second episode of our podcast series, Linking our Lives: England and Wales since 1971, is now available. We ask ONS' Rich Pereira how the LS has become such a gold mine of information about how our society has changed over time.


'Households and families' guide to using ONS LS data

A new guide to households and families data in the ONS LS is now available, along with guides to births and fertility, defining a study population, ethnicity, events, mortality and socio-economic indicators.

More news and events