Data Dictionary: Census 1990
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Survey: Census 1990
Data Source: U.S. Census Bureau
Table: P69. Sex By Age By Mobility And Self-Care Limitation Status [39]
Universe: Civilian noninstitutionalized persons 16 years and over
Table Details
P69. Sex By Age By Mobility And Self-Care Limitation Status
Universe: Civilian noninstitutionalized persons 16 years and over
Variable Label
P069_001
P069_002
P069_003
P069_004
P069_005
P069_006
P069_007
P069_008
P069_009
P069_010
P069_011
P069_012
P069_013
P069_014
P069_015
P069_016
P069_017
P069_018
P069_019
P069_020
P069_021
P069_022
P069_023
P069_024
P069_025
P069_026
P069_027
P069_028
P069_029
P069_030
P069_031
P069_032
P069_033
P069_034
P069_035
P069_036
P069_037
P069_038
P069_039
Relevant Documentation:
Excerpt from: Social Explorer, U.S. Census Bureau; Census of Population and Housing, 1990: Summary Tape File 3 on CD-ROM [machine-readable data files] / prepared by the Bureau of the Census. Washington: The Bureau [producer and distributor], 1991.
 
Sex
The data on sex were derived from answers to questionnaire item 3, which was asked of all persons. For most cases in which sex was not reported, it was determined by the appropriate entry from the person's given name and household relationship. Otherwise, sex was imputed according to the relationship to the householder and the age and marital status of the person. For more information on imputation, see Appendix C, Accuracy of the Data.

Sex Ratio
A measure derived by dividing the total number of males by the total number of females and multiplying by 100.

Comparability
A question on the sex of individuals has been asked of the total population in every census.

Excerpt from: Social Explorer, U.S. Census Bureau; Census of Population and Housing, 1990: Summary Tape File 3 on CD-ROM [machine-readable data files] / prepared by the Bureau of the Census. Washington: The Bureau [producer and distributor], 1991.
 
Age
The data on age were derived from answers to questionnaire item 5, which was asked of all persons. The age classification is based on the age of the person in complete years as of April 1, 1990. The age response in question 5a was used normally to represent a person's age. However, when the age response was unacceptable or unavailable, a person's age was derived from an acceptable year-of-birth response in question 5b.

Data on age are used to determine the applicability of other questions for a person and to classify other characteristics in census tabulations. Age data are needed to interpret most social and economic characteristics used to plan and examine many programs and policies. Therefore, age is tabulated by single years of age and by many different groupings, such as 5-year age groups.

Some tabulations are shown by the age of the householder. These data were derived from the age responses for each householder. (For more information on householder, see the discussion under "Household Type and Relationship.")

Median Age
This measure divides the age distribution into two equal parts: one-half of the cases falling below the median value and one-half above the value. Generally, median age is computed on the basis of more detailed age intervals than are shown in some census publications; thus, a median based on a less detailed distribution may differ slightly from a corresponding median for the same population based on a more detailed distribution. (For more information on medians, see the discussion under "Derived Measures.")

Limitation of the Data
Counts in 1970 and 1980 for persons 100 years old and over were substantially overstated. Improvements were made in the questionnaire design, in the allocation procedures, and to the respondent instruction guide to attempt to minimize this problem for the 1990 census.

Review of detailed 1990 census information indicated that respondents tended to provide their age as of the date of completion of the questionnaire, not their age as of April 1, 1990. In addition, there may have been a tendency for respondents to round their age up if they were close to having a birthday. It is likely that approximately 10 percent of persons in most age groups are actually 1 year younger. For most single years of age, the misstatements are largely offsetting. The problem is most pronounced at age 0 because persons lost to age 1 may not have been fully offset by the inclusion of babies born after April 1, 1990, and because there may have been more rounding up to age 1 to avoid reporting age as 0 years. (Age in complete months was not collected for infants under age 1.)

The reporting of age 1 year older than age on April 1, 1990, is likely to have been greater in areas where the census data were collected later in 1990. The magnitude of this problem was much less in the three previous censuses where age was typically derived from respondent data on year of birth and quarter of birth. (For more information on the design of the age question, see the section below that discusses "Comparability.")

Comparability
Age data have been collected in every census. For the first time since 1950, the 1990 data are not available by quarter year of age. This change was made so that coded information could be obtained for both age and year of birth. In each census since 1940, the age of a person was assigned when it was not reported. In censuses before 1940, with the exception of 1880, persons of unknown age were shown as a separate category. Since 1960, assignment of unknown age has been performed by a general procedure described as "imputation." The specific procedures for imputing age have been different in each census. (For more information on imputation, see Appendix C, Accuracy of the Data.)

Excerpt from: Social Explorer, U.S. Census Bureau; Census of Population and Housing, 1990: Summary Tape File 3 on CD-ROM [machine-readable data files] / prepared by the Bureau of the Census. Washington: The Bureau [producer and distributor], 1991.
 
Mobility Limitation Status
The data on mobility limitation status were derived from answers to questionnaire item 19a, which was asked of a sample of persons 15 years old and over. Persons were identified as having a mobility limitation if they had a health condition that had lasted for 6 or more months and which made it difficult to go outside the home alone. Examples of outside activities on the questionnaire included shopping and visiting the doctor's office.

The term "health condition" referred to both physical and mental conditions. A temporary health problem, such as a broken bone that was expected to heal normally, was not considered a health condition.

Comparability
This was the first time that a question on mobility limitation was included in the census.

Excerpt from: Social Explorer, U.S. Census Bureau; Census of Population and Housing, 1990: Summary Tape File 3 on CD-ROM [machine-readable data files] / prepared by the Bureau of the Census. Washington: The Bureau [producer and distributor], 1991.
 
Self-Care Limitation Status
The data on self-care limitation status were derived from answers to questionnaire item 19b, which was asked of a sample of persons 15 years old and over. Persons were identified as having a self-care limitation if they had a health condition that had lasted for 6 or more months and which made it difficult to take care of their own personal needs, such as dressing, bathing, or getting around inside the home.

The term "health condition" referred to both physical and mental conditions. A temporary health problem, such as a broken bone that was expected to heal normally was not considered a health condition.

Comparability
This was the first time that a question on self-care limitation was included in the census.