Exploring Language Use: A Comparison of the Decennial Census and the American Community Survey
Kelly A. Holder, U.S. Census Bureau
The purpose of this analysis is to perform a detailed comparison of the language data collected from Census 2000 with data collected from the 2000 American Community Survey (ACS). The first part of the analysis compares national level data to show that, at this level of geography, both data sources measure language characteristics well. Next, state level data is examined briefly to determine which states have high and low proportions of non-English language speakers. The final part of the analysis focuses on ACS test sites from the states with high proportions of non-English speakers and sites from the states with low proportions to see how these data on language status and language spoken at home perform between data sources. ACS test sites are used because they mirror what the full implementation of the survey will look like. These sites are also comparable to county level data from Census 2000.