Fresno 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 391,652 64.70% 433,491 59.19%
Spanish 156,144 25.79% 230,401 31.46%
Other Indo-European* 18,649 3.08% 19,551 2.67%
Asian Language** 36,828 6.08% 45,275 6.18%
Other 2,090 0.35% 3,704 0.51%
Total Population Age 5+ 605,363 100.00% 732,422 100.00%

Population Speaking English Less Than "Very Well" in 2000
Language Spoken at Home: Number Percent
Spanish 115,594 50.17%
Other Indo-European* 7,448 38.10%
Asian Language** 27,188 60.05%
Other Language 1,441 38.90%
Total 151,671 20.71%

Population Speaking English Less Than "Very Well" in 1990
Language Spoken at Home: Number Percent
Spanish 76,312 48.87%
Other Indo-European* 5,861 31.43%
Asian Language** 26,654 72.37%
Other Language 988 47.27%
Total 109,815 18.14%

* "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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