Cumberland County

LANGUAGE

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 175,636 95.60% 190,515 94.31%
Spanish 1,410 0.77% 2,908 1.44%
Other Indo-European* 5,104 2.78% 6,217 3.08%
Asian Language** 1,309 0.71% 1,945 0.96%
Other 260 0.14% 425 0.21%
Total Population Age 5+ 183,719 100.00% 202,010 100.00%

Population Speaking English Less Than "Very Well" in 2000
Language Spoken at Home: Number Percent
Spanish 1,073 36.90%
Other Indo-European* 2,197 35.34%
Asian Language** 909 46.74%
Other Language 179 42.12%
Total 4,358 2.16%

Population Speaking English Less Than "Very Well" in 1990
Language Spoken at Home: Number Percent
Spanish 522 37.02%
Other Indo-European* 1,600 31.35%
Asian Language** 739 56.46%
Other Language 102 39.23%
Total 2,963 1.61%

* "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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