What happened to the Census? Census 2010 and the ACS Sarah Maximiek, Binghamton University
Decennial Census  <ul><li>Mandated in the Constitution </li></ul><ul><li>1790 – First Census  </li></ul><ul><li>1900 -  De...
Census 2000 and earlier <ul><li>Short Form  </li></ul><ul><ul><li>DOB, gender, Hispanic Orgin (universally asked in 1980),...
Census 2000 and earlier  <ul><li>Long form  </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Varies considerably in length, depending on Census year ...
Census 2010 (and beyond) <ul><li>Will consist of the short form questionnaire only  </li></ul><ul><li>Information collecte...
American Community Survey (ACS) <ul><li>What is it? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>First done in 2005  </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>C...
 
ACS
ACS  <ul><li>Areas of 20,000 or more people will be updated with 3 year period  averages.  </li></ul><ul><li>For areas les...
ACS data release example average 1/05-12/07 1/06-12/08 Dec 2008 Dec 2009 Etc… Binghamton City  (47,380) sample average Dat...
Why the ACS?  <ul><li>Congress has failed to consistently fund mid-Census surveys </li></ul><ul><li>Spreads data gathering...
What the ACS is not… <ul><li>A substitute for Current Population Surveys  </li></ul><ul><li>Substitute for Small Area Inco...
Census vs ACS <ul><li>Residency </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Census: asks residents for “usual place of residence.”  </li></ul></...
Census vs ACS <ul><li>Point in Time data vs Estimates  </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Census: data collected is either headcount or...
Census vs ACS <ul><li>Income </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Census: Asks for data in early April when people have tax information i...
Census vs ACS <ul><li>Margin of Error  </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Census: Users were not told margin of error on data charts </...
Comparison of data sets <ul><li>Census 2010 data and earlier Census short form data can be compared* </li></ul><ul><li>ACS...
Comparison of Data Sets <ul><li>Comparison between ACS and Long Form Census data </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Varies, must consid...
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What happened the Census?

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A discussion of Census2010 vs the American Community Survey

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  • What happened the Census?

    1. 1. What happened to the Census? Census 2010 and the ACS Sarah Maximiek, Binghamton University
    2. 2. Decennial Census <ul><li>Mandated in the Constitution </li></ul><ul><li>1790 – First Census </li></ul><ul><li>1900 - Decennial Census tracked employment, social and agricultural counts </li></ul><ul><li>1902 – Census Bureau established as permanent agency </li></ul>
    3. 3. Census 2000 and earlier <ul><li>Short Form </li></ul><ul><ul><li>DOB, gender, Hispanic Orgin (universally asked in 1980), Race, Identifying Information, Housing Ownership </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Based on people – one answer per person. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Data widely available, distributed throughout most datasets </li></ul></ul>
    4. 4. Census 2000 and earlier <ul><li>Long form </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Varies considerably in length, depending on Census year </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Asks the respondent a variety of social, economic and demographic questions (education, citizenship, income source, language spoken at home, transportation to and from work, etc.), including short form questions </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Sample – given to a small percentage of the population </li></ul></ul>
    5. 5. Census 2010 (and beyond) <ul><li>Will consist of the short form questionnaire only </li></ul><ul><li>Information collected is what is required by Constitution (enumeration for representation) </li></ul><ul><li>The American Community Survey will fill in data left out of the long form </li></ul>
    6. 6. American Community Survey (ACS) <ul><li>What is it? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>First done in 2005 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Complied demographic data for areas of at least 65,000 people </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Based on sampling </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Based on addresses, not people </li></ul></ul>
    7. 8. ACS
    8. 9. ACS <ul><li>Areas of 20,000 or more people will be updated with 3 year period averages. </li></ul><ul><li>For areas less then 20,000 people, data will cover 5 year period averages . </li></ul>
    9. 10. ACS data release example average 1/05-12/07 1/06-12/08 Dec 2008 Dec 2009 Etc… Binghamton City (47,380) sample average Data included 1/05-12/05 Previous 12 mos. 2006 (1 st ACS test) should be updated annually after Census2010 Broome County (200,536) 1/05-12/09 1/06-12/10 2010 2011 etc… Johnson City (15,535) Dates Covered Release Dates Place
    10. 11. Why the ACS? <ul><li>Congress has failed to consistently fund mid-Census surveys </li></ul><ul><li>Spreads data gathering over long-term </li></ul><ul><li>Allows Decennial Census to focus on compiling an accurate headcount </li></ul><ul><li>Removes “content” from Decennial Census </li></ul><ul><li>More frequently updated data </li></ul>
    11. 12. What the ACS is not… <ul><li>A substitute for Current Population Surveys </li></ul><ul><li>Substitute for Small Area Income and Poverty Estimates </li></ul>
    12. 13. Census vs ACS <ul><li>Residency </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Census: asks residents for “usual place of residence.” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>ACS: asks for “current place of residence,” as defined as living there for the past two months </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Group quarters are treated differently, depending on question </li></ul></ul>
    13. 14. Census vs ACS <ul><li>Point in Time data vs Estimates </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Census: data collected is either headcount or sample as of “Census Day” (April 1) of the Census Year. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>ACS: with the introduction of ACS, the data available can be Point-in-time and/or a summary of data collected over a period of time </li></ul></ul>
    14. 15. Census vs ACS <ul><li>Income </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Census: Asks for data in early April when people have tax information in mind. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>ACS: people will be asked to estimate income over a 12 month period that is not Jan-Dec </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>ACS: also must account for changes in dollar value over a multi-year period </li></ul></ul>
    15. 16. Census vs ACS <ul><li>Margin of Error </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Census: Users were not told margin of error on data charts </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>ACS: 10% error margin, charts show lower and upper margins. </li></ul></ul>
    16. 17. Comparison of data sets <ul><li>Census 2010 data and earlier Census short form data can be compared* </li></ul><ul><li>ACS data across geographic areas can be compared if the time frames are the same (Annual to annual, 3 yr to 3 yr) </li></ul><ul><li>*as much as similar data sets from Census to Census could ever be compared, anyway </li></ul>
    17. 18. Comparison of Data Sets <ul><li>Comparison between ACS and Long Form Census data </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Varies, must consider: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>ACS data collected monthly, Census data reflects information as of April 1. What does this mean for that variable? </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Changes in rules (residency, group homes) can effect areas that have many institutions. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Is the number an average, as opposed to a sample? What is the error rate? </li></ul></ul></ul>
    18. 19. Questions?

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