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Gaston 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 158,650 97.41% 167,520 94.28%
Spanish 1,825 1.12% 6,703 3.77%
Other Indo-European* 1,769 1.09% 2,022 1.14%
Asian Language** 446 0.27% 1,161 0.65%
Other 182 0.11% 278 0.16%
Total Population Age 5+ 162,872 100.00% 177,684 100.00%

Population Speaking English Less Than "Very Well" in 2000
Language Spoken at Home: Number Percent
Spanish 3,891 58.05%
Other Indo-European* 497 24.58%
Asian Language** 689 59.35%
Other Language 88 31.65%
Total 5,165 2.91%

Population Speaking English Less Than "Very Well" in 1990
Language Spoken at Home: Number Percent
Spanish 706 38.68%
Other Indo-European* 519 29.34%
Asian Language** 221 49.55%
Other Language 47 25.82%
Total 1,493 0.92%

* "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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