Prince William 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 178,128 90.99% 215,173 83.71%
Spanish 7,343 3.75% 23,246 9.04%
Other Indo-European* 5,389 2.75% 9,853 3.83%
Asian Language** 3,886 1.99% 5,845 2.27%
Other 1,017 0.52% 2,921 1.14%
Total Population Age 5+ 195,763 100.00% 257,038 100.00%

Population Speaking English Less Than "Very Well" in 2000
Language Spoken at Home: Number Percent
Spanish 11,385 48.98%
Other Indo-European* 2,641 26.80%
Asian Language** 2,551 43.64%
Other Language 647 22.15%
Total 17,224 6.70%

Population Speaking English Less Than "Very Well" in 1990
Language Spoken at Home: Number Percent
Spanish 2,805 38.20%
Other Indo-European* 1,483 27.52%
Asian Language** 1,486 38.24%
Other Language 329 32.35%
Total 6,103 3.12%

* "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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