Introduction: In this Assignment, you will practice using American Fact Finder, create a demographical, social, economic, and housing profile of your community, profile how your community has developed and changed over the past 20 years, and predict what your community may look like 10 years from now.
A. Practice Using American Fact Finder
Using this website, you will first locate your local jurisdiction by city. Follow the instructions below to access information on your community.
Go to the U.S. Census Bureau Fact Finder website at
Type the City and State in the search box for the community you would like to research. (http://factfinder.census.gov/faces/nav/jsf/pages/index.xhtml).
B. Build a Demographical Profile of Your Home Community
- Use Fact Finder to build a current demographical profile of your home community. Develop a profile of the people who live in your community (age, gender, race, ethnicity, incomes, poverty, etc.). Perform the same actions for housing (type of homes, age, owner versus renter, etc.). Also, explore a profile of employment. A worksheet (with prompting questions) is provided to assist you.
- The demographic information will be used throughout the course.
- You must have this information available throughout the course in order to process the in-class activities and
the culminating project for the course. Saving the information on a memory device or printing hard copies is highly recommended. All Fact Finder categories can be downloaded or printed. You also may wish to save the Census Bureau site as a favorite on your PC.
- Explore the FAQ’s page for Fact Finder. The link to the page is located on the top right of the Fact Finder site.
- Once information has been gathered, consider how your home community has developed over time (past 20 years). Also consider how it may change as time progresses. As part of this Assignment, develop a short narrative on how your community has changed over the past 20 years and what its profile appear 10 years from now.
One last huge point to consider: The U.S. census is collected and processed every 10 years. Community demographics can change dramatically in that timeframe. EFOs must remain knowledgeable of their home community’s changing demographics.
- It is wise to have a discussion with your local planning or community development professionals. If you have such a discussion, please include your findings as part of the narrative for this section.
- Being able to explain and use the demographical, social, and cultural development of your community is essential to the effectiveness and credibility of a strategic decision maker.
Click here to access a PDF of the Demographic Worksheet example.