Census Trend Charts Demographic Maps Rankings & Comparisons Segregation Data  

Zoom in and out of geography at levels: US, States or Metro Areas, and Counties within States.

You can zoom out to United States

Visit the SSDAN Web Site
CensusScope is a product of the Social Science Data Analysis Network.

Columbia, SC

Print-Friendly Version


The Census asks questions about language use at home to locate groups of people who speak a language other than English. Their isolation or integration into a primarily English speaking community can be determined by their ability to speak English proficiently.

Language Spoken at Home, 1990-2000
1990 2000
Number Percent Number Percent
Only English 400,918 95.11% 469,250 93.47%
Spanish 8,165 1.94% 16,281 3.24%
Other Indo-European* 8,436 2.00% 9,916 1.98%
Asian Language** 2,877 0.68% 5,564 1.11%
Other 1,144 0.27% 996 0.20%
Total Population Age 5+ 421,540 100.00% 502,007 100.00%

Population Speaking English Less Than "Very Well" in 2000
Language Spoken at Home: Number Percent
Spanish 7,126 43.77%
Other Indo-European* 2,477 24.98%
Asian Language** 2,730 49.07%
Other Language 282 28.31%
Total 12,615 2.51%

Population Speaking English Less Than "Very Well" in 1990
Language Spoken at Home: Number Percent
Spanish 2,847 34.87%
Other Indo-European* 2,252 26.70%
Asian Language** 1,430 49.70%
Other Language 384 33.57%
Total 6,913 1.64%

* "Other Indo-European" excludes English and Spanish. "Indo-European" is not synonymous with "European." French, German, Hindi, and Persian are all classified as Indo-European. Hungarian, on the other hand, is lumped into "Other Language."

** "Asian Language" includes languages indigenous to Asia and Pacific islands areas that are not also Indo-European languages. Chinese, Japanese, Telugu, and Hawaiian are all classified here.

Also note that ability to speak English "very well" is based on the self-assessment of those responding to Census questions, not on a test of language ability.

Source: Census 2000 analyzed by the Social Science Data Analysis Network (SSDAN).

Home | About | Help | Contact | Use Policy