Frequently Asked Questions

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Why does the ACS ask for my name and my telephone number?

The American Community Survey (ACS) asks for individuals' names for two reasons.  First, we have found over many years of research that it is easier for a respondent to keep track of which person they are answering for if the names are used.  If you are interrupted while completing the survey, it will be easier to resume if you know which person you were working on - particularly in larger households.

The second reason is administrative.  In some instances, responses are difficult to interpret, or missing critical information. If we have the name and phone number of the person who completed the survey, we can call to collect missing information or ask for clarification.  By having the other names, we can more easily refer to specific information.

Without the name and phone number, we would have to send someone to an address to gather the information - which is more expensive than a phone call. 


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