E.g., 06/22/2017
E.g., 06/22/2017

State Language Data - TN

Tennessee

Language & Education
2015
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) (%) 327,392
Speak only English 20.3%
Speak English "very well" 33.5%
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 46.3%
Limited English Proficient (LEP) Population: Change over Time  
% change: 2000-2015 112.4%
% change: 1990-2000 394.4%
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. Data for Alaska, Maine, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Vermont, West Virginia, and Wyoming are from the Census Bureau's pooled 2011-2015 American Community Survey (ACS). Data for the United States overall and for the remaining states are from the 2015 ACS.

 
Naturalized citizens 120,258
Speak only English 33.1%
Speak English "very well" 40.2%
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 26.7%
Noncitizens 207,134
Speak only English 12.8%
Speak English "very well" 29.6%
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 57.6%

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) (%) 5,873,670
Speak only English 97.1%
Speak English ""very well"" 2.3%
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 0.5%
Limited English Proficient (LEP) Population: Change over Time  
% change: 2000-2011 -16.1%
% change: 1990-2000 29.3%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
Foreign Born
English Proficiency (age 5 and older) (%) 155,547
Speak only English 20.1%
"Speak English ""very well"" 34.0%
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 45.8%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
U.S. Born
English Proficiency (age 5 and older) (%) 5,160,373
Speak only English 97.4%
"Speak English ""very well"" 1.8%
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 0.7%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
Foreign Born
English Proficiency (age 5 and older) (%) 57,861
Speak only English 37.5%
"Speak English ""very well"" 37.6%
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 24.9%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
U.S. Born
English Proficiency (age 5 and older) (%) 4,471,431
Speak only English 97.9%
"Speak English ""very well"" 1.4%
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 0.6%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
 
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 1,094,563
Speak only English 996,299
Speak language other than English 98,264
Speak English "very well"
74,666
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP)
23,598
Speak Spanish 65,865
Speak English "very well"
50,586
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP)
15,279
Ages 18-64 4,090,719
Speak only English 3,786,527
Speak language other than English 304,192
Speak English "very well"
157,139
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP)
147,053
Speak Spanish 167,190
Speak English "very well"
74,641
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP)
92,549
65 and Older 1,015,780
Speak only English 989,738
Speak language other than English 26,042
Speak English "very well"
14,249
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP)
11,793
Speak Spanish 8,028
Speak English "very well"
4,483
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP)
3,545
%
65 and Older 100%
Speak only English 91.0%
Speak language other than English 9.0%
Speak English "very well" 6.8%
Speak English less than "very well" (LEP) 2.2%
Speak Spanish 6.0%
Speak English "very well" 4.6%
Speak English less than "very well" (LEP) 1.4%
Ages 18-64 100%
Speak only English 92.6%
Speak language other than English 7.4%
Speak English "very well" 3.8%
Speak English less than "very well" (LEP) 3.6%
Speak Spanish 4.1%
Speak English "very well" 1.8%
Speak English less than "very well" (LEP) 2.3%
Ages 5-17 100%
Speak only English 97.4%
Speak language other than English 2.6%
Speak English "very well" 1.4%
Speak English less than "very well" (LEP) 1.2%
Speak Spanish 0.8%
Speak English "very well" 0.4%
Speak English less than "very well" (LEP) 0.3%
 
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
 
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
 
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
 
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
 
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 6,201,062
Speak only English 5,772,564
Speak language other than English 428,498
Spanish or Spanish Creole 241,083
Speak English "very well" 129,710
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 111,373
French (Including Patois and Cajun) 14,280
Speak English "very well" 11,674
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 2,606
French Creole 1,629
Speak English "very well" 1,552
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 77
Italian 1,734
Speak English "very well" 1,519
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 215
Portuguese or Portuguese Creole 2,091
Speak English "very well" 1,698
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 393
German 12,414
Speak English "very well" 11,128
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 1,286
Yiddish 67
Speak English "very well" 67
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) N
Other West Germanic Languages 4,185
Speak English "very well" 2,784
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 1,401
Scandinavian Languages 494
Speak English "very well" 494
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) N
Greek 1,374
Speak English "very well" 991
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 383
Russian 3,405
Speak English "very well" 2,769
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 636
Polish 1,587
Speak English "very well" 1,276
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 311
Serbo-Croatian 825
Speak English "very well" 200
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 625
Other Slavic Languages 1,810
Speak English "very well" 1,409
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 401
Armenian N
Speak English "very well" N
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) N
Persian 3,051
Speak English "very well" 2,154
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 897
Gujarati 4,615
Speak English "very well" 2,042
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 2,573
Hindi 4,959
Speak English "very well" 4,170
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 789
Urdu 1,847
Speak English "very well" 1,682
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 165
Other Indic Languages 5,975
Speak English "very well" 2,784
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 3,191
Other Indo-European Languages 7,971
Speak English "very well" 5,341
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 2,630
Chinese 13,729
Speak English "very well" 7,123
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 6,606
Japanese 4,274
Speak English "very well" 2,342
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 1,932
Korean 9,346
Speak English "very well" 4,574
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 4,772
Mon-Khmer, Cambodian 2,926
Speak English "very well" 888
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 2,038
Hmong N
Speak English "very well" N
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) N
Thai 1,565
Speak English "very well" 863
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 702
Laotian 8,033
Speak English "very well" 4,682
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 3,351
Vietnamese 9,638
Speak English "very well" 3,939
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 5,699
Other Asian Languages 10,250
Speak English "very well" 7,092
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 3,158
Tagalog 7,442
Speak English "very well" 5,781
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 1,661
Other Pacific Island Languages 1,779
Speak English "very well" 1,184
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 595
Navajo 97
Speak English "very well" 97
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) N
Other Native North American Languages 472
Speak English "very well" 429
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 43
Hungarian 344
Speak English "very well" N
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 344
Arabic 24,807
Speak English "very well" 11,412
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 13,395
Hebrew 686
Speak English "very well" 640
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 46
African Languages 17,088
Speak English "very well" 9,230
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 7,858
Other and Unspecified Languages 626
Speak English "very well" 334
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 292
%
Field 306 100%
Field 307 93.1%
Field 308 6.9%
Field 310 100%
Field 310 53.8%
Field 310 46.2%
Field 313 100%
Field 314 81.8%
Field 315 18.2%
Field 316 100%
Field 316 95.3%
Field 316 4.7%
Field 319 100%
Field 319 87.6%
Field 319 12.4%
Field 322 100%
Field 322 81.2%
Field 322 18.8%
Field 325 100%
Field 325 89.6%
Field 325 10.4%
Field 328 100%
Field 328 100.0%
Field 328 N
Field 331 100%
Field 331 66.5%
Field 331 33.5%
Field 334 100%
Field 334 100.0%
Field 334 N
Field 337 100%
Field 337 72.1%
Field 337 27.9%
Field 340 100%
Field 340 81.3%
Field 340 18.7%
Field 343 100%
Field 343 80.4%
Field 343 19.6%
Field 346 100%
Field 346 24.2%
Field 346 75.8%
Field 349 100%
Field 349 77.8%
Field 349 22.2%
Field 352 100%
Field 352 N
Field 352 N
Field 355 100%
Field 355 70.6%
Field 355 29.4%
Field 358 100%
Field 358 44.2%
Field 358 55.8%
Field 361 100%
Field 361 84.1%
Field 361 15.9%
Field 364 100%
Field 364 91.1%
Field 364 8.9%
Field 367 100%
Field 367 46.6%
Field 367 53.4%
Field 370 100%
Field 370 67.0%
Field 370 33.0%
Field 373 100%
Field 373 51.9%
Field 373 48.1%
Field 376 100%
Field 376 54.8%
Field 376 45.2%
Field 379 100%
Field 379 48.9%
Field 379 51.1%
Field 382 100%
Field 382 30.3%
Field 382 69.7%
Field 385 100%
Field 385 N
Field 385 N
Field 388 100%
Field 388 55.1%
Field 388 44.9%
Field 391 100%
Field 391 58.3%
Field 391 41.7%
Field 394 100%
Field 394 40.9%
Field 394 59.1%
Field 397 100%
Field 397 69.2%
Field 397 30.8%
Field 400 100%
Field 400 77.7%
Field 400 22.3%
Field 403 100%
Field 403 66.6%
Field 403 33.4%
Field 406 100%
Field 406 100.0%
Field 406 N
Field 409 100%
Field 409 90.9%
Field 409 9.1%
Field 412 100%
Field 412 N
Field 412 100.0%
Field 415 100%
Field 415 46.0%
Field 415 54.0%
Field 418 100%
Field 418 93.3%
Field 418 6.7%
Field 421 100%
Field 421 54.0%
Field 421 46.0%
Field 424 100%
Field 424 53.4%
Field 424 46.6%
 
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
 
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
 
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
 
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
Educational Attainment Foreign Born
Population (age 25 and older) 271,796
Less than high school diploma 29.6%
High school diploma or GED 25.8%
Some college or associate's degree 17.3%
Bachelor's degree 15.4%
Graduate or professional degree 11.9%
% Foreign Born among Adults with  
Less than high school diploma 12.9%
Bachelor's degree or higher 6.5%
Educational Attainment: Change over Time  
Adults with no high school diploma  
% change: 2000-2015 141.3%
% change: 1990-2000 265.3%
Adults with a bachelor's degree or higher  
% change: 2000-2015 107.0%
% change: 1990-2000 119.8%
Educational Attainment by U.S. Citizenship Status (foreign-born adults, age 25 and older)

Note: 1) 1) Data for Alaska, Maine, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Vermont, West Virginia, and Wyoming are from the Census Bureau's pooled 2011-2015 American Community Survey (ACS). Data for the United States overall and for the remaining states are from the 2015 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 (%) 106,564
Less than high school diploma 16.5%
High school diploma or GED 23.2%
Some college or associate's degree 23.1%
Bachelor's degree 21%
Graduate or professional degree 16.2%
Noncitizens (%) 165,232
Less than high school diploma 38%
High school diploma or GED 27.5%
Some college or associate's degree 13.5%
Bachelor's degree 11.8%
Graduate or professional degree 9.2%
U.S. Born
Population (age 25 and older) 4,201,691
Less than high school diploma 12.9%
High school diploma or GED 33.6%
Some college or associate's degree 27.8%
Bachelor's degree 16.1%
Graduate or professional degree 9.5%
% Foreign Born among Adults with  
Nothing  
Nothing  
Educational Attainment: Change over Time  
Adults with no high school diploma  
% change: 2000-2011 -37.6%
% change: 1990-2000 -14.4%
Adults with a bachelor's degree or higher  
% change: 2000-2011 53.5%
% change: 1990-2000 44.6%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
Foreign Born
Population (age 25 and older) 113,901
Less than high school diploma 29.3%
High school diploma or GED 19.4%
Some college or associate's degree 19.9%
Bachelor's degree 15.7%
Graduate or professional degree 15.8%
% Foreign Born among Adults with  
Less than high school diploma 3.7%
Bachelor's degree or higher 4.9%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
U.S. Born
Population (age 25 and older) 3,630,845
Less than high school diploma 24.0%
High school diploma or GED 31.8%
Some college or associate's degree 24.9%
Bachelor's degree 12.7%
Graduate or professional degree 6.6%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
Foreign Born
Population (age 25 and older) 45,984
Less than high school diploma 19.9%
High school diploma or GED 22.4%
Some college or associate's degree 22.3%
Bachelor's degree 18.2%
Graduate or professional degree 17.3%
% Foreign Born among Adults with  
Less than high school diploma 0.9%
Bachelor's degree or higher 3.3%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
U.S. Born
Population (age 25 and older) 3,082,581
Less than high school diploma 33.0%
High school diploma or GED 30.3%
Some college or associate's degree 20.9%
Bachelor's degree 10.5%
Graduate or professional degree 5.3%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   

Sources: Migration Policy Institute tabulations of data from the U.S. Census Bureau’s American Community Survey (ACS) and Decennial Census. Unless stated otherwise, 2015 data are from the one-year ACS file. For information about ACS definitions, methodology, sampling error, and nonsampling error, click here. Estimates from 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 an estimate 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, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Vermont, West Virginia, and Wyoming are from the Census Bureau's pooled 2011-2015 American Community Survey (ACS). Data for the United States overall and for the remaining states are from the 2015 ACS.