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Rockingham County

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The Census asks questions about language use at home to locate groups of people who speak a language other than English. Their isolation or integration into a primarily English speaking community can be determined by their ability to speak English proficiently.

Language Spoken at Home, 1990-2000
1990 2000
Number Percent Number Percent
Only English 212,088 93.91% 243,626 93.97%
Spanish 2,419 1.07% 3,452 1.33%
Other Indo-European* 9,664 4.28% 9,621 3.71%
Asian Language** 1,192 0.53% 1,876 0.72%
Other 486 0.22% 692 0.27%
Total Population Age 5+ 225,849 100.00% 259,267 100.00%

Population Speaking English Less Than "Very Well" in 2000
Language Spoken at Home: Number Percent
Spanish 1,084 31.40%
Other Indo-European* 2,183 22.69%
Asian Language** 798 42.54%
Other Language 128 18.50%
Total 4,193 1.62%

Population Speaking English Less Than "Very Well" in 1990
Language Spoken at Home: Number Percent
Spanish 636 26.29%
Other Indo-European* 2,200 22.76%
Asian Language** 661 55.45%
Other Language 175 36.01%
Total 3,672 1.63%

* "Other Indo-European" excludes English and Spanish. "Indo-European" is not synonymous with "European." French, German, Hindi, and Persian are all classified as Indo-European. Hungarian, on the other hand, is lumped into "Other Language."

** "Asian Language" includes languages indigenous to Asia and Pacific islands areas that are not also Indo-European languages. Chinese, Japanese, Telugu, and Hawaiian are all classified here.

Also note that ability to speak English "very well" is based on the self-assessment of those responding to Census questions, not on a test of language ability.

Source: Census 2000 analyzed by the Social Science Data Analysis Network (SSDAN).

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