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The Foreign Born From Asia: 2011

Written by:
Report Number ACSBR/11-06


During the last 50 years, the number of foreign born from Asia increased rapidly in the United States, from about 0.5 million in 1960 to 11.6 million in 2011.1,2,3 In 2011, the foreign born from Asia represented over one-fourth of the total foreign-born population in the nation. This brief discusses the size, place of birth, citizenship status, educational attainment, and geographic distribution of the foreign born from Asia in the United States. Data on the foreign-born population from Asia are presented at the national and state levels based on the 2011 American Community Survey (ACS).

1 This report refers to the foreign-born population born in Asia, not those who report their race as Asian.
2 The term Asia includes countries in Eastern, South Central, South Eastern, and Western Asia. Eastern Asia includes China (including China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Macau, and the Paracel Islands), Japan, Korea (including South Korea and North Korea), and Mongolia. South Central Asia includes Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Iran, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan. South Eastern Asia includes Brunei, Burma, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Timor-Leste, and Vietnam. Western Asia includes Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Cyprus, Georgia, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, and Yemen. Throughout the remainder of this report, the term Asia refers to all of these areas and also any responses classified as “Asia not elsewhere classified.”
3 Gibson, Campbell and Kay Jung, 2006, “Historical Census Statistics on the Foreign-Born Population in the United States: 1850 to 2000,” U.S. Census Bureau, Population Division Working Paper, Number 81, available on the Census Bureau’s Web site at <www.census.gov/library/working-papers/2006/demo/POP-twps0081.html>.

Page Last Revised - October 8, 2021
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