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FASH420:Assortment Planning,Sourcing and Buying (Shaffer)

Explore Census Data

Check out this Data Gems video from the Census Bureau which provides a beginner intro to navigating the Census Data website.

  1. Visit
  2. Click "Advanced Search"
  3. Begin by choosing your geography
    • Scroll down the list to find "Metropolitan Statistical Area/Micropolitan Statistical Area"
    • Choose the "Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD-WV Metro Area" (note your selection has been added to your search choices at the bottom of the page)
  4. Once your Geography is selected, use the left column to choose "Topics"
    • Choose topics that you believe will give you relevant information (A check box will select a data category. A topic with no check box will reveal another layer of options)
  5. Once your Topic is selected, click Search to view your data
    • Explore the resulting Tables and Maps 
    • When viewing a table, click "Customize Table" to then download or Print the data

More about the Census

The US Census and American Community Survey

The US Census Bureau is the federal government's largest statistical agency, which serves as "the nation's leading provider of quality data about its people and economy". The Bureau is responsible for a number of surveys and reports, among which are:

  • the Decennial Census of Population and Housing: A count of every resident in the country, done every 10 years ending in zero.
  • the American Community Survey: Ongoing survey which results in estimates of how people live in the US.

You will use to find facts and data for a specific location. 

Economic Census

The U.S. Census Bureau is also responsible for the Economic Census, an official measurement of American business and economy, released every five years.  In October through December 2012, forms were sent out to nearly four million businesses. Respondents were asked to provide a range of operational and performance data for their companies.

The most recently released set of data is the 2012 Economic Census data, with 2017 being released now.