The dataset used for the tools included in this website is the American Community Survey five year dataset (2005-2009). Each year, approximately 3 million household unit addresses in the United States and 36,000 HU addresses in Puerto Rico are selected. American Community Survey (ACS) content is designed to meet the needs of federal government agencies and is a rich source of local area information useful to state and local governments, universities, and private businesses. The five year dataset includes the data from all years (approximately 15 million households) included in the sample and was chosen for the tools included in Gender Quality Explorer because it allows for greater disaggregation by smaller geographies and other demographic characteristics of interest (race, ethnicity, immigration status, location, age, gender, household type, housing type, income levels). The results represent the average value over the five year period.
The American Community Survey is part of the 2010 Decennial Census Program and is an alternative method for collecting the long-form sample data collected in the last five censuses. The long-form sample historically collected detailed population and housing characteristics once a decade through questions asked of a sample of the population. Beginning in 2005, the ACS collects this detailed information on an ongoing basis, thereby providing more accurate and timely data than was possible previously. Starting in 2010, the decennial census will include only a short form that collects basic information for a total count of the nation's population.
A key measure of the success of a data collection effort is the final response rate. The American Community Survey (ACS) achieves a high total response rate each year, due in part to the data collection design, which in turn reflects the experience and research in data collection strategies drawn from the U.S. Census Bureau's decennial census and demographic survey programs. Success, however, would not be possible without the high quality of the actual data collection, which is due to the efforts of the interviewing staff in the telephone centers and regional offices. This success also is related to the mandatory nature of the survey. Title 13 of the United States Code [U.S.C.] authorizes the Census Bureau to conduct the ACS, requires households to participate, and requires the Census Bureau to keep confidential all information collected. The data collection operation for housing units (HUs) consists of three modes: mail, telephone, and personal visit. The language assistance program for the American Community Survey (ACS) includes a set of methods and procedures designed to assist sample households with limited English proficiency in completing the ACS interview. Language assistance can be provided in many forms, including the development of translated instruments and other survey materials, the recruiting and training of bilingual interviewers, and the provision of telephone or Internet assistance in multiple languages.
This documentation is provided by Social Explorer. For more detailed information, please see the US Census Bureau.