E.g., 09/16/2014
E.g., 09/16/2014

State Language Data - CA

California

Language & Education
2012
2000
1990
English Proficiency

Note: The term limited English proficient (LEP) refers to any person age 5 and older who reported speaking English "not at all," "not well," or "well" on their survey questionnaire. Persons who speak only English or who report speaking English "very well" are considered proficient in English.

Note: The term "foreign born" refers to people residing in the United States at the time of the population survey who were not U.S. citizens at birth. The foreign-born population includes naturalized U.S. citizens, lawful permanent immigrants (or green-card holders), refugees and asylees, certain legal nonimmigrants (including those on student, work, or some other temporary visas), and persons residing in the country without authorization.

Foreign Born
English Proficiency (age 5 and older) (%) 10,263,926
Speak only English 9.6%
Speak English "very well" 33.7%
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 56.7%
Limited English Proficient (LEP) Population: Change over Time  
% change: 2000-2012 14.7%
% change: 1990-2000 42.0%
English Proficiency of the Foreign Born by U.S. Citizenship Status (age 5 and older)*

Note: The term limited English proficient (LEP) refers to any person age 5 and older who reported speaking English "not at all," "not well," or "well" on their survey questionnaire. Persons who speak only English or who report speaking English "very well" are considered proficient in English.

 
Naturalized citizens 4,891,302
Speak only English 12.6%
Speak English "very well" 41.2%
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 46.2%
Noncitizens 5,372,624
Speak only English 6.8%
Speak English "very well" 26.9%
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 66.3%

Note: The term "U.S. born" refers to people residing in the United States who were U.S. citizens in one of three categories: people born in one of the 50 states or the District of Columbia; people born in U.S. Insular Areas such as Puerto Rico or Guam; or people who were born abroad to at least one U.S. citizen parent.

U.S. Born
English Proficiency (age 5 and older) (%) 25,240,694
Speak only English 74.5%
Speak English ""very well"" 21.9%
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 3.7%
Limited English Proficient (LEP) Population: Change over Time  
% change: 2000-2011 -22.9%
% change: 1990-2000 44.3%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
Foreign Born
English Proficiency (age 5 and older) (%) 8,762,060
Speak only English 10.9%
"Speak English ""very well"" 31.1%
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 57.9%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
U.S. Born
English Proficiency (age 5 and older) (%) 22,654,569
Speak only English 79.7%
"Speak English ""very well"" 15.0%
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 5.3%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
Foreign Born
English Proficiency (age 5 and older) (%) 6,337,062
Speak only English 12.4%
"Speak English ""very well"" 31.2%
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 56.4%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
U.S. Born
English Proficiency (age 5 and older) (%) 21,014,236
Speak only English 85.5%
"Speak English ""very well"" 10.6%
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 4.0%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
 
Population (age 5 and older)
 
 
Language Spoken at Home (by age and English proficiency)

Note: The term limited English proficient (LEP) refers to any person age 5 and older who reported speaking English "not at all," "not well," or "well" on their survey questionnaire. Persons who speak only English or who report speaking English "very well" are considered proficient in English.

Number
Ages 5-17 6,702,496
Speak only English 3,643,760
Speak language other than English 3,058,736
Speak English "very well"
2,462,736
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP)
596,000
Speak Spanish 2,390,180
Speak English "very well"
1,927,112
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP)
463,068
Ages 18-64 24,202,731
Speak only English 13,133,965
Speak language other than English 11,068,766
Speak English "very well"
5,973,717
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP)
5,095,049
Speak Spanish 7,183,412
Speak English "very well"
3,672,750
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP)
3,510,662
65 and Older 4,599,393
Speak only English 3,003,782
Speak language other than English 1,595,611
Speak English "very well"
538,843
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP)
1,056,768
Speak Spanish 728,249
Speak English "very well"
246,250
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP)
481,999
%
65 and Older 100%
Speak only English 54.4%
Speak language other than English 45.6%
Speak English "very well" 36.7%
Speak English less than "very well" (LEP) 8.9%
Speak Spanish 35.7%
Speak English "very well" 28.8%
Speak English less than "very well" (LEP) 6.9%
Ages 18-64 100%
Speak only English 54.3%
Speak language other than English 45.7%
Speak English "very well" 24.7%
Speak English less than "very well" (LEP) 21.1%
Speak Spanish 29.7%
Speak English "very well" 15.2%
Speak English less than "very well" (LEP) 14.5%
Ages 5-17 100%
Speak only English 65.3%
Speak language other than English 34.7%
Speak English "very well" 11.7%
Speak English less than "very well" (LEP) 23.0%
Speak Spanish 15.8%
Speak English "very well" 5.4%
Speak English less than "very well" (LEP) 10.5%
 
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
 
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
 
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
 
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
 
Population (age 5 and older)
 
 
Language Spoken at Home (detailed, by English proficiency)

Note: The term limited English proficient (LEP) refers to any person age 5 and older who reported speaking English "not at all," "not well," or "well" on their survey questionnaire. Persons who speak only English or who report speaking English "very well" are considered proficient in English.

Number
Total Household Population, Age 5 and Older 35,504,620
Speak only English 19,781,507
Speak language other than English 15,723,113
Spanish or Spanish Creole 10,301,841
Speak English "very well" 5,846,112
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 4,455,729
French (Including Patois and Cajun) 137,533
Speak English "very well" 113,814
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 23,719
French Creole 6,647
Speak English "very well" 5,554
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 1,093
Italian 63,227
Speak English "very well" 50,918
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 12,309
Portuguese or Portuguese Creole 82,444
Speak English "very well" 57,580
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 24,864
German 118,401
Speak English "very well" 102,411
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 15,990
Yiddish 2,140
Speak English "very well" 1,949
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 191
Other West Germanic Languages 25,246
Speak English "very well" 21,987
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 3,259
Scandinavian Languages 23,557
Speak English "very well" 21,891
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 1,666
Greek 24,607
Speak English "very well" 20,538
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 4,069
Russian 160,925
Speak English "very well" 82,494
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 78,431
Polish 19,158
Speak English "very well" 13,138
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 6,020
Serbo-Croatian 22,229
Speak English "very well" 16,060
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 6,169
Other Slavic Languages 33,429
Speak English "very well" 20,935
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 12,494
Armenian 203,823
Speak English "very well" 107,122
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 96,701
Persian 195,502
Speak English "very well" 122,895
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 72,607
Gujarati 43,503
Speak English "very well" 31,848
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 11,655
Hindi 165,738
Speak English "very well" 134,307
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 31,431
Urdu 44,619
Speak English "very well" 34,349
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 10,270
Other Indic Languages 203,155
Speak English "very well" 125,570
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 77,585
Other Indo-European Languages 47,635
Speak English "very well" 30,760
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 16,875
Chinese 1,092,778
Speak English "very well" 487,070
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 605,708
Japanese 137,308
Speak English "very well" 76,622
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 60,686
Korean 390,015
Speak English "very well" 165,759
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 224,256
Mon-Khmer, Cambodian 77,136
Speak English "very well" 36,309
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 40,827
Hmong 78,969
Speak English "very well" 48,331
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 30,638
Thai 48,752
Speak English "very well" 21,277
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 27,475
Laotian 36,019
Speak English "very well" 18,892
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 17,127
Vietnamese 539,379
Speak English "very well" 224,619
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 314,760
Other Asian Languages 161,398
Speak English "very well" 113,522
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 47,876
Tagalog 791,829
Speak English "very well" 534,715
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 257,114
Other Pacific Island Languages 111,450
Speak English "very well" 72,386
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 39,064
Navajo 1,104
Speak English "very well" 897
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 207
Other Native North American Languages 5,121
Speak English "very well" 4,446
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 675
Hungarian 11,002
Speak English "very well" 7,482
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 3,520
Arabic 161,861
Speak English "very well" 96,099
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 65,762
Hebrew 42,202
Speak English "very well" 35,556
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 6,646
African Languages 73,316
Speak English "very well" 48,352
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 24,964
Other and Unspecified Languages 38,115
Speak English "very well" 20,730
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 17,385
%
Field 306 100%
Field 307 55.7%
Field 308 44.3%
Field 310 100%
Field 310 56.7%
Field 310 43.3%
Field 313 100%
Field 314 82.8%
Field 315 17.2%
Field 316 100%
Field 316 83.6%
Field 316 16.4%
Field 319 100%
Field 319 80.5%
Field 319 19.5%
Field 322 100%
Field 322 69.8%
Field 322 30.2%
Field 325 100%
Field 325 86.5%
Field 325 13.5%
Field 328 100%
Field 328 91.1%
Field 328 8.9%
Field 331 100%
Field 331 87.1%
Field 331 12.9%
Field 334 100%
Field 334 92.9%
Field 334 7.1%
Field 337 100%
Field 337 83.5%
Field 337 16.5%
Field 340 100%
Field 340 51.3%
Field 340 48.7%
Field 343 100%
Field 343 68.6%
Field 343 31.4%
Field 346 100%
Field 346 72.2%
Field 346 27.8%
Field 349 100%
Field 349 62.6%
Field 349 37.4%
Field 352 100%
Field 352 52.6%
Field 352 47.4%
Field 355 100%
Field 355 62.9%
Field 355 37.1%
Field 358 100%
Field 358 73.2%
Field 358 26.8%
Field 361 100%
Field 361 81.0%
Field 361 19.0%
Field 364 100%
Field 364 77.0%
Field 364 23.0%
Field 367 100%
Field 367 61.8%
Field 367 38.2%
Field 370 100%
Field 370 64.6%
Field 370 35.4%
Field 373 100%
Field 373 44.6%
Field 373 55.4%
Field 376 100%
Field 376 55.8%
Field 376 44.2%
Field 379 100%
Field 379 42.5%
Field 379 57.5%
Field 382 100%
Field 382 47.1%
Field 382 52.9%
Field 385 100%
Field 385 61.2%
Field 385 38.8%
Field 388 100%
Field 388 43.6%
Field 388 56.4%
Field 391 100%
Field 391 52.5%
Field 391 47.5%
Field 394 100%
Field 394 41.6%
Field 394 58.4%
Field 397 100%
Field 397 70.3%
Field 397 29.7%
Field 400 100%
Field 400 67.5%
Field 400 32.5%
Field 403 100%
Field 403 64.9%
Field 403 35.1%
Field 406 100%
Field 406 81.3%
Field 406 18.8%
Field 409 100%
Field 409 86.8%
Field 409 13.2%
Field 412 100%
Field 412 68.0%
Field 412 32.0%
Field 415 100%
Field 415 59.4%
Field 415 40.6%
Field 418 100%
Field 418 84.3%
Field 418 15.7%
Field 421 100%
Field 421 66.0%
Field 421 34.0%
Field 424 100%
Field 424 54.4%
Field 424 45.6%
 
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
 
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
 
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
 
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
Educational Attainment

Note: The term limited English proficient (LEP) refers to any person age 5 and older who reported speaking English "not at all," "not well," or "well" on their survey questionnaire. Persons who speak only English or who report speaking English "very well" are considered proficient in English.

Foreign Born
Population (age 25 and older) 9,144,469
Less than high school diploma 35.9%
High school diploma or GED 19.1%
Some college or associate's degree 19.1%
Bachelor's degree 16.3%
Graduate or professional degree 9.6%
% Foreign Born among Adults with  
Less than high school diploma 71.7%
Bachelor's degree or higher 30.9%
Educational Attainment: Change over Time  
Adults with no high school diploma  
% change: 2000-2012 6.6%
% change: 1990-2000 44.3%
Adults with a bachelor's degree or higher  
% change: 2000-2012 57.7%
% change: 1990-2000 76.6%
Educational Attainment by U.S. Citizenship Status (foreign-born adults, age 25 and older)

Note: 1) Data for Alaska, Maine, Mississippi, Montana, South Dakota, Vermont, and West Virginia are from the U.S. Census Bureau's pooled 2009-2011 American Community Survey (ACS), and data for North Dakota and Wyoming are from pooled 2007-2011 ACS. Data for the United States overall and for the remaining states are from the 2012 ACS. 2) The letter N Indicates that a number could not be provided by the Census Bureau because the number of sample cases was too small for this state.

 
Naturalized citizens (%) 4,658,090
Less than high school diploma 24.2%
High school diploma or GED 18.4%
Some college or associate's degree 24.1%
Bachelor's degree 21.4%
Graduate or professional degree 11.9%
Noncitizens (%) 4,486,379
Less than high school diploma 48.2%
High school diploma or GED 19.7%
Some college or associate's degree 13.8%
Bachelor's degree 11.1%
Graduate or professional degree 7.2%
U.S. Born
Population (age 25 and older) 15,635,315
Less than high school diploma 8.3%
High school diploma or GED 21.5%
Some college or associate's degree 36.3%
Bachelor's degree 21.6%
Graduate or professional degree 12.3%
% Foreign Born among Adults with  
Nothing  
Nothing  
Educational Attainment: Change over Time  
Adults with no high school diploma  
% change: 2000-2011 -30.0%
% change: 1990-2000 -19.6%
Adults with a bachelor's degree or higher  
% change: 2000-2011 26.5%
% change: 1990-2000 19.1%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
Foreign Born
Population (age 25 and older) 7,001,114
Less than high school diploma 44.1%
High school diploma or GED 15.9%
Some college or associate's degree 18.6%
Bachelor's degree 13.6%
Graduate or professional degree 7.9%
% Foreign Born among Adults with  
Less than high school diploma 62.4%
Bachelor's degree or higher 26.4%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
U.S. Born
Population (age 25 and older) 14,310,486
Less than high school diploma 13.0%
High school diploma or GED 22.2%
Some college or associate's degree 35.6%
Bachelor's degree 18.9%
Graduate or professional degree 10.3%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
Foreign Born
Population (age 25 and older) 4,635,457
Less than high school diploma 46.1%
High school diploma or GED 16.1%
Some college or associate's degree 19.5%
Bachelor's degree 11.7%
Graduate or professional degree 6.7%
% Foreign Born among Adults with  
Less than high school diploma 48.1%
Bachelor's degree or higher 19.5%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
U.S. Born
Population (age 25 and older) 14,044,712
Less than high school diploma 16.4%
High school diploma or GED 24.4%
Some college or associate's degree 34.2%
Bachelor's degree 16.4%
Graduate or professional degree 8.6%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   

Sources: Migration Policy Institute tabulations of the U.S. Bureau of the Census’ American Community Survey (ACS) and Decennial Census. Unless stated otherwise, 2012 data are from the one-year ACS file. For information about ACS definitions, methodology, sampling error, and nonsampling error, click here. Estimates from the 1990 and 2000 Decennial Census data as well as ACS microdata are from Steven Ruggles, Matthew Sobek, Trent Alexander, Catherine A. Fitch, Ronald Goeken, Patricia Kelly Hall, Miriam King, and Chad Ronnander, "Integrated Public Use Microdata Series: Version 4.0" (Machine-readable database, Minnesota Population Center [producer and distributor], 2011).

Definitions

  • The term "foreign born" refers to people residing in the United States at the time of the population survey who were not U.S. citizens at birth. The foreign-born population includes naturalized U.S. citizens, lawful permanent immigrants (or green-card holders), refugees and asylees, certain legal nonimmigrants (including those on student, work, or some other temporary visas), and persons residing in the country without authorization.
  • The term "U.S. born" refers to people residing in the United States who were U.S. citizens in one of three categories: people born in one of the 50 states or the District of Columbia; people born in U.S. Insular Areas such as Puerto Rico or Guam; or people who were born abroad to at least one U.S. citizen parent.
  • The term limited English proficient (LEP) refers to any person age 5 and older who reported speaking English “not at all,” “not well,” or “well” on their survey questionnaire. Persons who speak only English or who report speaking English “very well” are considered proficient in English.

Data-related notes

  • The letter N Indicates that a number could not be provided by the Census Bureau because the number of sample cases was too small for this state.​
  • For “English proficiency of the foreign born by U.S. citizenship status” and “Educational Attainment by U.S. Citizenship Status” : Data for Alaska, Maine, Mississippi, Montana, South Dakota, Vermont, and West Virginia are from the U.S. Census Bureau's pooled 2009-2011 American Community Survey (ACS), and North Dakota and Wyoming data are from pooled 2007-2011 ACS. Data for the United States overall and for the remaining states are from the 2012 ACS.