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Dane 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 319,632 93.63% 363,563 90.65%
Spanish 5,510 1.61% 15,313 3.82%
Other Indo-European* 9,100 2.67% 10,488 2.62%
Asian Language** 5,839 1.71% 10,179 2.54%
Other 1,303 0.38% 1,515 0.38%
Total Population Age 5+ 341,384 100.00% 401,058 100.00%

Population Speaking English Less Than "Very Well" in 2000
Language Spoken at Home: Number Percent
Spanish 7,173 46.84%
Other Indo-European* 2,385 22.74%
Asian Language** 5,289 51.96%
Other Language 436 28.78%
Total 15,283 3.81%

Population Speaking English Less Than "Very Well" in 1990
Language Spoken at Home: Number Percent
Spanish 1,707 30.98%
Other Indo-European* 1,924 21.14%
Asian Language** 3,123 53.49%
Other Language 350 26.86%
Total 7,104 2.08%

* "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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