At A Glance
- Provides contextual information that may be useful when studying childhood obesity.
- The census provides basic data about population and housing characteristics that directly affect how more than $400 billion per year in federal and state funding is allocated to local, state, and tribal governments.
- For 2010, a limited number of questions were asked of every person (sex, age, race, Hispanic or Latino origin, household relationship) and each household (tenure, whether the unit was owned or rented) in the U.S. (i.e., short form).
- The 2000 census was the last time additional questions were asked of a sample of persons and housing units (i.e., long form). These included queries regarding population and housing characteristics. In 2006 these statistics were made available on the American Community Survey
As required by law, to provide the population counts to determine how the number of congressional seats in the United States (U.S.) House of Representatives are apportioned among the 50 states.
Began in 1790 and is conducted every 10 years, with years ending in 0. The most recent year was 2010.
Census Bureau, U.S. Department of Commerce
The 2010 census short form had no sampling design because every individual and housing unit was intended to be counted in the census. For the 2000 census long form, approximately one in six persons was included.
Census 2000 included 281.4 million individuals across the U.S. Census 2010 is expected to include more than 309 million individuals.
Learn more about how the Census 2000 was designed and implemented.
|Name||Methods of Assessment|
|Ancestry||Interview/questionnaire (last asked in Census 2000)|
|Disability (ADL/IADL*; cognitive; movement/physical; vision/hearing)||Interview/questionnaire|
|Employment characteristics||Interview/questionnaire (last asked in Census 2000)|
|Hispanic or Latino origin||Interview/questionnaire|
|Marital status||Interview/questionnaire (last asked in Census 2000)|
|Place of birth, citizenship, and year of entry||Interview/questionnaire (last asked in Census 2000)|
|School enrollment and educational attainment||Interview/questionnaire (last asked in Census 2000)|
|Name||Methods of Assessment|
|Housing characteristics||Interview/questionnaire (last asked in Census 2000)|
|Tenure and vacancy characteristics||Interview/questionnaire|
*ADL: Activities of Daily Living / IADL: Instrumental Activities of Daily Living
Data Access and Cost
Microdata Sample files will be available from the 2010 Census. Census 2000 One-percent Public Use Microdata Sample (PUMS) files are available. These files contain individual records for a 1-percent sample of individuals and housing units. Five-percent PUMS files also are available.
PUMS data are available free of charge.
Special tabulation requests for 2010 census data will be prepared by the Census Bureau. Additional tabulated data prepared by the Census Bureau and other public and private organizations also are available. These include a transportation planning package with information on commuters and commuting patterns.
The Public Use Microdata Sample (PUMS) Files (See Data Access and Cost) contain geographic units known as super-Public Use Microdata Areas (super-PUMAs) and Public Use Microdata Areas (PUMAs). Each super-PUMA contains a minimum population of 400,000 and each PUMA contains a minimum population threshold of 100,000.
Geographic equivalency files that show the relationship between the PUMA and standard Census 2000 geographic concepts (e.g., counties) are included.
Census Bureau. State and Metropolitan Area Data Book: 2010 (7th edition). Washington (DC): U.S. Department of Commerce, Census Bureau, 2010.
Census Bureau. Statistical Abstract of the United States, 2010: The National Data Book. (129th edition) Washington (DC): U.S. Department of Commerce, Census Bureau, 2009.