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Analyzing Census Data in Excel

UPDATE: The American FactFinder (AFF) tool used in this course has been replaced by You will be able to access and download the same data products available on AFF on the new platform.

Learn how to use Excel to summarize, analyze, and visualize Census data.

Developed by Adam Hecktman and Alexandra Barker.


Skill Level: Beginner

Duration: 1.5 hours


Excel is a very popular tool among all data users. It can be leveraged to unlock the value of open data of all kinds, and it is particularly well-suited to transforming, analyzing, and visualizing Census data. This course will show how to use Excel to access, manipulate, and visualize Census data.  It will also tools for doing advanced statistical analysis.

After completing this course, you will be able to:
    ✓    Access data from the Census Bureau using the American FactFinder
    ✓    Format tables for data analysis
    ✓    Perform basic and advanced analysis of Census data using Excel
    ✓    Create data visualizations such as sparklines, hierarchical charts, and histograms

Who Should Take this Course?

All levels of data users who are interesting in exploring new way of analyzing and visualizing Census data using unique features available in Excel.


Andy Hecktman is the Microsoft’s Director of Technology & Civic Innovation for Chicago. He works with local organizations to em-power them through technology to achieve positive social impact and equity.

Alexandra Barker is a Supervisory Program Analyst with Data Dissemination and Training Program at the U.S. Census Bureau. She has over 10 years of experience working with data users and stakeholders on how to access and utilize Census Bureau data.

Course Materials



Beginning of Course



Module 1: Basic Census Data Access and Table Formatting

During this tutorial, you will learn about data access using the American FactFinder and table formatting in Excel.

Module 2: Quick Census Data Analysis in Excel

During this tutorial, you will learn how to conduct a quick analysis of Census data using Excel.

Module 3: Advanced Census Data Access and Hierarchical Charts in Excel

During this tutorial, you will learn how to create different kinds of hierarchical charts in Excel using Census data.

Module 4: Advanced Census Data Analysis in Excel

During this tutorial, you will learn how to perform advanced analyses of Census data using Excel.


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