E.g., 09/22/2021
E.g., 09/22/2021
State Language Data - IA
 

Iowa

Language & Education
2019
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) (%) 176,151
Speak only English 16.9%
Speak English "very well" 32.4%
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 50.7%
Limited English Proficient (LEP) Population: Change over Time  
% change: 2000-2019 104.2%
% change: 1990-2000 175.3%
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, Mississippi, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Vermont, West Virginia, and Wyoming are from the Census Bureau's pooled 2015-2019 American Community Survey (ACS). Data for the United States overall and for the remaining states are from the 2019 ACS.

 
Naturalized citizens 82,332
Speak only English 22.7%
Speak English "very well" 37.7%
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 39.6%
Noncitizens 93,819
Speak only English 11.7%
Speak English "very well" 27.8%
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 60.5%

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) (%) 2,788,313
Speak only English 95.8%
Speak English ""very well"" 3.6%
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 0.6%
Limited English Proficient (LEP) Population: Change over Time  
% change: 2000-2011 -31.7%
% change: 1990-2000 20.9%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
Foreign Born
English Proficiency (age 5 and older) (%) 88,849
Speak only English 19.5%
"Speak English ""very well"" 31.2%
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 49.2%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
U.S. Born
English Proficiency (age 5 and older) (%) 2,649,650
Speak only English 96.7%
"Speak English ""very well"" 2.4%
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 0.9%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
Foreign Born
English Proficiency (age 5 and older) (%) 44,262
Speak only English 30.3%
"Speak English ""very well"" 33.8%
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 35.9%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
U.S. Born
English Proficiency (age 5 and older) (%) 2,526,867
Speak only English 97.3%
"Speak English ""very well"" 2.0%
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 0.8%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
 
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 5-17 531,224
Speak only English 473,931
Speak language other than English 57,293
Speak English "very well"
45,463
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP)
11,830
Speak Spanish 34,798
Speak English "very well"
29,691
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP)
5,107
Ages 18-64 1,879,665
Speak only English 1,690,475
Speak language other than English 189,190
Speak English "very well"
104,500
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP)
84,690
Speak Spanish 89,887
Speak English "very well"
49,629
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP)
40,258
65 and Older 553,575
Speak only English 535,777
Speak language other than English 17,798
Speak English "very well"
8,343
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP)
9,455
Speak Spanish 5,722
Speak English "very well"
2,758
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP)
2,964
%
65 and Older 100%
Speak only English 89.2%
Speak language other than English 10.8%
Speak English "very well" 8.6%
Speak English less than "very well" (LEP) 2.2%
Speak Spanish 6.6%
Speak English "very well" 5.6%
Speak English less than "very well" (LEP) 1.0%
Ages 18-64 100%
Speak only English 89.9%
Speak language other than English 10.1%
Speak English "very well" 5.6%
Speak English less than "very well" (LEP) 4.5%
Speak Spanish 4.8%
Speak English "very well" 2.6%
Speak English less than "very well" (LEP) 2.1%
Ages 5-17 100%
Speak only English 96.8%
Speak language other than English 3.2%
Speak English "very well" 1.5%
Speak English less than "very well" (LEP) 1.7%
Speak Spanish 1.0%
Speak English "very well" 0.5%
Speak English less than "very well" (LEP) 0.5%
 
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
 
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
 
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
 
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
 
Population (age 5 and older)
 
 
Language Spoken at Home (detailed, by English proficiency)

Note: 1) 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. 2) Data for Alaska, Arkansas, District of Columbia, Hawaii, Idaho, Maine, Mississippi, Montana, New Hampshire, North Dakota, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Vermont, West Virginia, and Wyoming are from the U.S. Census Bureau's pooled 2015-2019 American Community Survey (ACS). Data for the United States overall and for the remaining states are from the 2019 ACS.

Number
Total Household Population, Age 5 and Older 2,964,464
Speak only English 2,700,183
Speak language other than English 264,281
Spanish 130,407
Speak English "very well" 82,078
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 48,329
French (Including Cajun) 9,157
Speak English "very well" 3,719
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 5,438
Haitian 123
Speak English "very well" 123
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) N
Italian 1,226
Speak English "very well" 859
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 367
Portuguese 782
Speak English "very well" 662
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 120
German 12,761
Speak English "very well" 8,926
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 3,835
Yiddish, Pennsylvania Dutch or Other West Germanic Languages 5,896
Speak English "very well" 5,229
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 667
Russian 2,453
Speak English "very well" 1,890
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 563
Polish 648
Speak English "very well" 299
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 349
Other Slavic Languages 13,237
Speak English "very well" 6,816
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 6,421
Armenian N
Speak English "very well" N
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) N
Persian (including Farsi, Dari) 610
Speak English "very well" 337
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 273
Gujarati 958
Speak English "very well" 770
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 188
Hindi 3,827
Speak English "very well" 1,863
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 1,964
Urdu 593
Speak English "very well" 357
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 236
Punjabi 549
Speak English "very well" 494
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 55
Bengali 729
Speak English "very well" 666
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 63
Nepali, Marathi, or Other Indic Languages 2,022
Speak English "very well" 659
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 1,363
Other Indo-European Languages 3,141
Speak English "very well" 2,124
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 1,017
Telugu 3,260
Speak English "very well" 2,680
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 580
Tamil 535
Speak English "very well" 535
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) N
Malayalam, Kannada, or Other Dravidian Languages 1,040
Speak English "very well" 798
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 242
Chinese (including Mandarin, Cantonese) 12,515
Speak English "very well" 6,969
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 5,546
Japanese 1,984
Speak English "very well" 1,584
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 400
Korean 4,401
Speak English "very well" 1,997
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 2,404
Hmong 535
Speak English "very well" 268
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 267
Vietnamese 9,781
Speak English "very well" 3,158
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 6,623
Khmer 1,358
Speak English "very well" 1,125
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 233
Thai, Lao, or Other Tai-Kadai Languages 4,631
Speak English "very well" 2,186
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 2,445
Other Languages of Asia 4,424
Speak English "very well" 1,016
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 3,408
Tagalog (including Filipino) 3,486
Speak English "very well" 2,503
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 983
Ilocano, Samoan, Hawaiian, or Other Austronesian Languages 1,115
Speak English "very well" 558
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 557
Arabic 9,791
Speak English "very well" 5,989
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 3,802
Hebrew 241
Speak English "very well" 232
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 9
Amharic, Somali, or Other Afro-Asiatic Languages 2,923
Speak English "very well" 1,458
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 1,465
Yoruba, Twi, Igbo, or Other Languages of Western Africa 1,959
Speak English "very well" 1,378
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 581
Swahili or Other Languages of Central, Eastern, and Southern Africa 9,151
Speak English "very well" 4,331
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 4,820
Native Languages of North America 1,423
Speak English "very well" 1,356
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 67
Other and Unspecified Languages 609
Speak English "very well" 314
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 295
%
Field 306 100%
Field 307 91.1%
Field 308 8.9%
Field 310 100%
Field 310 62.9%
Field 310 37.1%
Field 313 100%
Field 314 40.6%
Field 315 59.4%
Field 316 100%
Field 316 100.0%
Field 316 N
Field 319 100%
Field 319 70.1%
Field 319 29.9%
Field 322 100%
Field 322 84.7%
Field 322 15.3%
Field 325 100%
Field 325 69.9%
Field 325 30.1%
Field 328 100%
Field 328 88.7%
Field 328 11.3%
Field 331 100%
Field 331 77.0%
Field 331 23.0%
Field 334 100%
Field 334 46.1%
Field 334 53.9%
Field 337 100%
Field 337 51.5%
Field 337 48.5%
Field 340 100%
Field 340 N
Field 340 N
Field 343 100%
Field 343 55.2%
Field 343 44.8%
Field 346 100%
Field 346 80.4%
Field 346 19.6%
Field 349 100%
Field 349 48.7%
Field 349 51.3%
Field 352 100%
Field 352 60.2%
Field 352 39.8%
Field 355 100%
Field 355 90.0%
Field 355 10.0%
Field 358 100%
Field 358 91.4%
Field 358 8.6%
Field 361 100%
Field 361 32.6%
Field 361 67.4%
Field 364 100%
Field 364 67.6%
Field 364 32.4%
Field 367 100%
Field 367 82.2%
Field 367 17.8%
Field 370 100%
Field 370 100.0%
Field 370 N
Field 373 100%
Field 373 76.7%
Field 373 23.3%
Field 376 100%
Field 376 55.7%
Field 376 44.3%
Field 379 100%
Field 379 79.8%
Field 379 20.2%
Field 382 100%
Field 382 45.4%
Field 382 54.6%
Field 385 100%
Field 385 50.1%
Field 385 49.9%
Field 388 100%
Field 388 32.3%
Field 388 67.7%
Field 391 100%
Field 391 82.8%
Field 391 17.2%
Field 394 100%
Field 394 47.2%
Field 394 52.8%
Field 397 100%
Field 397 23.0%
Field 397 77.0%
Field 400 100%
Field 400 71.8%
Field 400 28.2%
Field 403 100%
Field 403 50.0%
Field 403 50.0%
Field 406 100%
Field 406 61.2%
Field 406 38.8%
Field 409 100%
Field 409 96.3%
Field 409 3.7%
Field 412 100%
Field 412 49.9%
Field 412 50.1%
Field 415 100%
Field 415 70.3%
Field 415 29.7%
Field 418 100%
Field 418 47.3%
Field 418 52.7%
Field 421 100%
Field 421 95.3%
Field 421 4.7%
Field 424 100%
Field 424 51.6%
Field 424 48.4%
 
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
 
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
 
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
 
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
Educational Attainment Foreign Born
Population (age 25 and older) 143,893
Less than high school diploma 28.1%
High school diploma or GED 25.9%
Some college or associate's degree 16.3%
Bachelor's degree 15.0%
Graduate or professional degree 14.8%
% Foreign Born among Adults with  
Less than high school diploma 25.8%
Bachelor's degree or higher 6.9%
Educational Attainment: Change over Time  
Adults with no high school diploma  
% change: 2000-2019 80.0%
% change: 1990-2000 102.1%
Adults with a bachelor's degree or higher  
% change: 2000-2019 153.0%
% change: 1990-2000 60.5%
Educational Attainment by U.S. Citizenship Status (foreign-born adults, age 25 and older)

Note: 1) Data for Alaska, Maine, Mississippi, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Vermont, West Virginia, and Wyoming are from the U.S. Census Bureau's pooled 2015-2019 American Community Survey (ACS). Data for the United States overall and for the remaining states are from the 2019 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 (%) 71,819
Less than high school diploma 23.4%
High school diploma or GED 26.2%
Some college or associate's degree 18.1%
Bachelor's degree 18.1%
Graduate or professional degree 14.2%
Noncitizens (%) 72,074
Less than high school diploma 32.8%
High school diploma or GED 25.6%
Some college or associate's degree 14.5%
Bachelor's degree 11.9%
Graduate or professional degree 15.3%
U.S. Born
Population (age 25 and older) 1,979,111
Less than high school diploma 5.9%
High school diploma or GED 31.4%
Some college or associate's degree 33.5%
Bachelor's degree 20.1%
Graduate or professional degree 9.1%
% Foreign Born among Adults with  
Nothing  
Nothing  
Educational Attainment: Change over Time  
Adults with no high school diploma  
% change: 2000-2011 -51.7%
% change: 1990-2000 -29.8%
Adults with a bachelor's degree or higher  
% change: 2000-2011 51.3%
% change: 1990-2000 32.9%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
Foreign Born
Population (age 25 and older) 61,469
Less than high school diploma 36.5%
High school diploma or GED 18.6%
Some college or associate's degree 17.4%
Bachelor's degree 12.5%
Graduate or professional degree 15.0%
% Foreign Born among Adults with  
Less than high school diploma 8.5%
Bachelor's degree or higher 4.2%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
U.S. Born
Population (age 25 and older) 1,830,858
Less than high school diploma 13.1%
High school diploma or GED 36.9%
Some college or associate's degree 29.1%
Bachelor's degree 14.7%
Graduate or professional degree 6.2%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
Foreign Born
Population (age 25 and older) 33,833
Less than high school diploma 32.8%
High school diploma or GED 17.0%
Some college or associate's degree 19.0%
Bachelor's degree 12.8%
Graduate or professional degree 18.4%
% Foreign Born among Adults with  
Less than high school diploma 3.1%
Bachelor's degree or higher 3.5%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
U.S. Born
Population (age 25 and older) 1,734,021
Less than high school diploma 19.7%
High school diploma or GED 39.1%
Some college or associate's degree 24.5%
Bachelor's degree 11.6%
Graduate or professional degree 5.0%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   

Sources: Migration Policy Institute tabulations of the U.S. Census Bureau American Community Survey (ACS) and Decennial Census. Unless stated otherwise, 2019 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, Sarah Flood, Ronald Goeken, Josiah Grover, Erin Meyer, Jose Pacas and Matthew Sobek. IPUMS USA: Version 10.0 [dataset]. Minneapolis, MN: IPUMS, 2020. https://doi.org/10.18128/D010.V10.0.

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, Mississippi, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Vermont, West Virginia, and Wyoming are from the Census Bureau's pooled 2015-2019 American Community Survey (ACS). Data for the United States overall and for the remaining states are from the 2019 ACS. 
  • For “Language Spoken at Home (detailed, by English proficiency)”: Data for Alaska, Arkansas, District of Columbia, Hawaii, Idaho, Maine, Mississippi, Montana, New Hampshire, North Dakota, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Vermont, West Virginia, and Wyoming are from the U.S. Census Bureau's pooled 2015-2019 American Community Survey (ACS). Data for the United States overall and for the remaining states are from the 2019 ACS.