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2008 Product Changes

In 2008, several changes were made to improve the content and data quality of the American Community Survey (ACS). Most of the changes to the 2008 ACS data products are in response to improvements to the 2008 ACS questionnaire and changes to tabulated categories for select topics. For an explanation of all 1-year and 3-year changes, see List of 2008 ACS Data Product Changes [XLS 795KB].

Changes to the 2008 ACS 1-Year Data Products: Similar to last year, there are approximately 260 changes implemented to the 2008 ACS 1-year data products, on a base of roughly 1,600 tables. This includes the addition of approximately 108 new tables, the modification of approximately 55 existing tables, and the removal of approximately 99 existing tables.

Tables 1-3 summarize the changes by topic and data product type. Table 1 identifies the data products that are new in 2008. Table 2 identifies the data products that existed in the 2007 ACS but have been deleted in the 2008 ACS. In many instances, the information in these deleted products can be found in new tables. Table 3 identifies the data products that existed in the 2007 ACS but these products have been modified for the 2008 ACS.

Table 1. New Data Products for the 2008 ACS 1-Year Estimates

Topic ID Topic Detailed Tables Subject Tables Ranking Tables,
Geographic
Comparison Tables (GCT),
Thematic Maps
05 Place of Birth 2 0 0
09 Relationship 3 0 0
10 Grandparents 1 0 0
11 Households and Families 1 0 1
12 Marital Status and Marital History 14 0 4
14 School Enrollment 19 0 0
15 Educational Attainment 2 0 0
17 Poverty 0 0 1 (GCT only)
18 Disability 30 2 1
21 Veterans 4 0 0
22 SNAP/Food Stamps 1 0 0
23 Employment Status 4 0 0
24 Industry, Occupation, and Class of Worker 3 0 0
27 Health Insurance Coverage 6 0 0
99 Imputation 9 0 0
Total 99 2 7

Because ranking tables, geographic comparison tables, and thematic maps are different representations of the same statistics; the addition of a new ranking table statistic will also result in a new geographic comparison table and thematic map.

The largest number of new detailed tables is for data on disability (30 new tables). This is because the 2008 ACS disability questions do not produce disability estimates comparable to the 2007 ACS disability estimates. As a result, a decision was made to remove all old disability tables and replace them with all new tables, including all new table numbers. Topics that are crossed by disability will also have new table numbers.

Other notable new data products include:

  • 2 foreign-born detailed tables that include data on year of naturalization.
  • 3 relationship detailed tables present results based on the expanded set of relationship categories.
  • 1 household and family detailed table includes data on multigenerational households.
  • 5 detailed tables and 4 ranking tables present data based on the new marital history questions.
  • 10 detailed tables include data on the expanded grade of enrollment categories.
  • 2 detailed tables display the expanded educational attainment categories.
  • 2 veterans detailed tables present estimates from the new service-connected disability status and ratings questions.
  • 4 detailed tables show median earnings by detailed occupation.
  • 6 detailed tables present data based on the new health insurance coverage questions.

Table 2. Deleted Data Products from the 2008 ACS 1-Year Estimates

Topic ID Topic Detailed Tables Subject Tables Ranking Tables,
Geographic
Comparison Tables,
Thematic Maps
10 Grandparents 1 0 0
14 School Enrollment 9 0 0
18 Disability 76 2 3
21 Veterans 2 0 0
22 SNAP/Food Stamps 2 0 0
23 Employment Status 5 0 0
Total 95 2 3

Nearly all of the removed data products are disability detailed tables or tables that cross by disability. The only exceptions are:

  • 9 race-iterated school enrollment detailed tables that were removed and reinstated under new table numbers.
  • 1 food stamp table that was removed because the ACS no longer collects information on the amount of food stamp benefits; and
  • 2 employment tables that were removed because revisions to the weeks worked question no longer permit the calculation of aggregate or mean weeks worked.

Table 3. Modified Data Products (including Data Profiles) for the 2008 ACS 1-Year Estimates

Topic ID Topic Detailed Tables Subject Tables Ranking Tables,
Geographic
Comparison Tables,
Thematic Maps
Profile Lines
01 Age and Sex 0 4 0 Yes
02 Race 0 0 0 Yes
04 Ancestry 12 0 0 No
05 Place of Birth 2 0 0 Yes
09 Relationship 0 1 0 No
10 Grandparents 0 2 0 Yes
12 Marital Status and Marital History 1 0 0 No
14 School Enrollment 0 1 0 No
15 Educational Attainment 23 0 0 No
16 Language 9 0 0 No
17 Poverty 0 1 0 No
18 Disability 0 0 0 Yes
20 Earnings 0 1 0 No
21 Veterans 0 1 0 Yes
22 SNAP/Food Stamps 0 1 0 No
23 Employment Status 0 2 0 No
24 Industry, Occupation, and Class of Worker 14 2 0 Yes
25 Housing Characteristics 0 0 0 Yes
26 Group Quarters 0 4 0 No
99 Imputation 7 0 0 No
Total 68 20 0 8

As identified above in Table 3, most of the detailed table modifications represent changes to ancestry and industry coding.

While the ancestry tables will all look the same, the interpretation of the "Scotch-Irish" and "Other groups" estimates will change. In 2008, Irish-Scotch was recognized as a distinct ancestry. Individuals reporting Irish-Scotch are no longer tabulated as "Scotch-Irish" but rather are included in the "Other groups" category.

In 2008, the ACS switched from the 2002 North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) codes to the 2007 NAICS codes. As a result, codes and descriptions in the Information sector changed: "Broadcasting and telecommunications" and "Internet publishing and internet service providers" were deleted and "Broadcasting, internet publishing, and telecommunications services" was added. For more information on the 2007 industry code changes, see NAICS.

Changes to the 2006-2008 ACS 3-Year Data Products: While the 1-year and 3-year data products are generally consistent, not all the changes to the 2008 ACS 1-year data products will be immediately visible in the 2006-2008 ACS 3-year data products.

Additions to the 2008 ACS 1-year data products will not show up in the 3-year data products until the 2008-2010 ACS 3-year data products are released in 2011. This includes all of the new marital history, health insurance coverage, service-connected disability status and ratings, foreign born, relationship, and educational attainment data products as well as two expanded school enrollment detailed tables. It will require three years of data collection before those 3-year data products become available, therefore 3-year estimates will not be available until the 2008-2010 ACS 3-year data products are released in 2011. This includes the 3-year Public Use Microdata Sample (PUMS) files.

All tables removed from the 2008 ACS 1-year data products will also be removed from the 2006-2008 ACS 3-year data products.


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Source: U.S. Census Bureau | American Community Survey Office | Email ACS | Last Revised: September 18, 2014
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