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The 2015 National Content Test was conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau to test census questionnaire content and to obtain nationwide measurements of response rates for Internet and self-response. The test census was sent to a statistically representative sample of approximately 1.2 million households in the United States and Puerto Rico. This test was scheduled to begin on August 24, and run through October 31, 2015. The official National Content Test Census Day was September 1, 2015.


  • Evaluate and compare different versions of questions that will be asked in the 2020 Census. The 2015 NCT is the primary mid-decade opportunity to compare different versions of questions prior to making final decisions for the 2020 Census.
  • Test different contact strategies for optimizing self-response, specifically to respond using the Internet — the least costly and most efficient response option. The 2015 NCT will utilize web-based technology, such as the Internet, smart phones, and tablets to improve question designs, and to optimize reporting.

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