The number of residents with a particular level of education in a region, expressed as a percentage of all residents 25 and older, broken down by race and ethnicity.
An educated population makes a more attractive workforce and is better prepared to instruct the next generation of residents. High educational attainment represents a region's investment in human capital and preparation for long-term growth.
The share of Essex County adults in 2013-17 with a bachelor's degree or higher was highest among Asian residents (52%), followed by white residents (42%), African American residents (26%) and Hispanic residents (12%). These proportions were similar for African American residents in the state, but somewhat lower for all other racial and ethnic groups. Essex had higher shares of African American and white residents with least a bachelor's degree compared to the national level, at 21% and 32%, respectively.
All groups in Essex increased their rates of residents with a bachelor's degree or higher since 2000. Asian residents had the largest increase of 11 percentage points, while white and African American residents both increased by 9 points, and Hispanic residents by 3 points.
The comparison counties had similar racial and ethnic disparities in education levels, but varied in their extent. Essex County had lower rates of Asian and white adults with at least a bachelor's degree than all the comparison counties. The percentages of African American and Hispanic residents with bachelor's degrees in Essex was similar to Lake, IL and lower than Westchester, NY (31% and 23%, respectively) and Middlesex, MA (33% and 30%).
Adults are people 25 and older. The multi-year figures are from the Census Bureau's American Community Survey. The bureau combined five years of responses to the survey to provide estimates for smaller geographic areas and increase the precision of its estimates. However, because the information came from a survey, the samples responding to the survey were not always large enough to produce reliable results, especially in small geographic areas. CGR has noted on data tables the estimates with relatively large margins of error. Estimates with three asterisks have the largest margins, plus or minus 50% or more of the estimate. Two asterisks mean plus or minus 35%-50%, and one asterisk means plus or minus 20%-35%. For all estimates, the confidence level is 90%, meaning there is 90% probability the true value (if the whole population were surveyed) would be within the margin of error (or confidence interval).
The survey provides data on characteristics of the population that used to be collected only during the decennial census. Data for this indicator are released annually in December.