Immigration Overview
United States

Immigration Overview
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Every place in America is home to a unique group of immigrants. This report uses the term immigrant more or less synonymously with the term foreign-born, meaning anyone residing in the United States who was born in another country. Only the latter term is reported by the Census Bureau's American Community Survey (ACS), the primary data source for this report. 

How many people in the United States were born in another country?

The foreign-born population includes both non-citizens and naturalized citizens living in the United States. It may include some U.S. residents who do not consider themselves true immigrants, such as students and expatriates from other countries. It does not include children with immigrant parents—many of whom were born on U.S. soil. The tiles below show a few basic statistics about the United States that put the foreign-born population in context. 

By the Numbers:

Where do immigrants live in the United States?

This map shows the foreign-born population as a percent of each state's total population. Hover over a county to see its percentage. Use the time-slider beneath the map to see data from different years.

What languages do immigrants speak at home?

The ACS divides languages spoken by U.S. residents into several broad categories, based on the major families of spoken languages.

Asian and Pacific Island languages include Chinese, Japanese, Thai, Vietnamese, Turkish, and languages spoken by indigenous people of Australia along with other Pacific cultures.

Indo-European languages include a huge swath of spoken languages, ranging from French to Farsi, along with the many languages spoken on the Indian subcontinent. English and Spanish are also Indo-European languages, but are recorded in separate categories.

Other languages include Arabic and Hebrew, many languages spoken in Africa, Native American languages, and Hungarian. 

How many immigrants do not speak English well ?

This measure means that a U.S. resident reported speaking English "not well" or "not at all" in the American Community Survey. It excludes foreign-born residents who report speaking English "well" or "very well," or who spoke English as their only language. 

The bar chart below shows which languages are spoken by foreign-born residents who lack English fluency. 

About the Data

Data is from the U.S. Census Bureau's American Community Survey (ACS), 1-year estimates. 

Percentage and number of foreign-born: Table DP02. 

Total population: Table B05012. 

Number of naturalized citizens: Table B05005. 

Percentage of foreign-born who do not speak English well: Table B16004, 5-year estimates. 

English Fluency and Spoken Language: Table B16005. 

This report uses the Census Bureau Data API but is not endorsed or certified by the Census Bureau.