Please Try again!
Test Your Knowledge of Basic Demographic Facts
politics

Test Your Knowledge of Basic Demographic Facts

Nick Douglas, Gawker Media

Photo by James Cridland

Quick, what percentage of the US population is 65 or older? In a recent Twitter quiz , most people couldn't correctly answer this or several other basic demographic questions. (The answer is 15%.)

While his poll is now closed, sociologist Philip N. Cohen compiled a handy list of 25 important demographic stats , which are useful for gauging the accuracy and implications of claims like Trump's "I've created over a million jobs since I'm president," or statistics like " 37% of US male prisoners are black ." Cohen breaks down the population by age, race, education, income, and life expectancy.

Advertisement

Before you read all the stats, try covering up the numbers with your hand and making a guess. You might have some out-of-date figures in your head. For instance, I knew that the US population hit 300 million a decade ago, but I had no idea it'd grown so much since then-to 326 million.

The stats are also available as a one-page PDF , so you can print it out, tape it to the wall, and drill it into your head. Cohen updates his list every few years, so maybe make a calendar event to check back in 2019.

Tags for this article:

Contribute to LifeHacker

Write for Us

Subscribe for latest stories