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JOU 4340 Writing and Editing for Online Media

Today's Plan

  1. Introduction to data journalism: data sources and data visualization
  2. Introduction to Census data
  3. Data Story Telling Tool: Social Explorer
    1. We will create a data story presentation slider map comparing a variable over time.
    2. Here is an example slider map showing Median Household Income with % Single Mothers.

Decennial Census and the American Community Survey

While the main function of the U.S. decennial census is to provide counts of people for the purpose of congressional apportionment, the primary purpose of the American Community Survey (ACS) is to measure the changing social and economic characteristics of the U.S. population—our education, housing, jobs, and more.

The American Community Survey

  • Conducted every month, every year
  • Sent to a sample of addresses (about 3.5 million) in the 50 states, District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico
  • Asks about topics not on the 2020 Census, such as education, employment, internet access, and transportation
  • Provides current information to communities every year.  It also provides local and national leaders with the information they need for programs, economic development, emergency management, and understanding local issues and conditions.

The Decennial Census

  • Conducted every ten years
  • Counts every person living in the 50 states, District of Columbia, and the five U.S. territories
  • Asked a shorter set of questions, such as age, sex, race, Hispanic origin, and owner/renter status
  • Provides an official count of the population, which determines congressional representation.  Also provides critical data that lawmakers and many others use to provide daily services, products, and support for communities.

Social Explorer

University Libraries

One Bear Place #97148
Waco, TX 76798-7148

(254) 710-6702