Sign In

Trending Searches: Job OpportunitiesParks | Library

Standard Data Dictionary

StandardDatasetImage.jpgThe Prince William County Standard Data Dictionary is a dataset of the latest U.S. Census American Community Survey  (ACS) 5-Year Estimates, including the latest quarterly estimates. If you are looking only for the quarterly estimates, they are located on a separate page.


This dataset is Prince William County's official demographic dataset for county staff members, the general public, and external entities. The dataset draws information from the U.S. Census American Community Survey (ACS) 5-Year Estimates, which are the most accurate and reliable "intercensal" estimates and stem from a substantial sample size (released annually in December). Although more accurate, the data is "less current" than ACS 1-Year estimates. To help mitigate this, the most current estimates (as of the latest quarter) of the county's total population, housing units, housing unit types, households, and student enrollment are provided by Prince William County government. Unless otherwise noted, all percentages in the dataset are derived from U.S. Census ACS base totals (universe values such as total population, housing units, and so on) in order to retain the dataset's integrity. When using and reporting on data in the standard data dictionary, always use percentages when available: percentages convey the proportion of the population that the attribute encompasses. When using PWC's quarterly estimates in conjunction with U.S. Census ACS estimates, you must differentiate between the two by explicitly noting their sources.



The dataset contains a large amount of information and includes the following columns: Category, Attribute Name, Value, Units, Percent, Universe, Data Currency, Source, Dataset, Data Table, Margin of Error, Definition/ Description, Methodology, Access, and Notes. For these reasons, the dataset is more than just a table of values; it communicates precisely where the data was drawn from, what it means, where you can access it online, and more.

Note: Asterisks (*) in front of attribute names indicate those attributes that are reported or calculated quarterly by sources within Prince William County Government. Additionally, these rows are shaded with a darker color.

Update Schedule: The entire data dictionary will be updated annually and posted close to February 1st. The quarterly estimates within the dictionary will be updated each quarter.

PDF: PWC DATA DICTIONARY - VERSION 2017 (note: once opened, you must zoom in at least 300% for best readability)

EXCEL FILE: PWC DATA DICTIONARY - VERSION 2017 (partially editable excel file of the data dictionary)

Uploaded: 1/27/17   --  Updated annually



Prince William County Government (2017). Standard Data Dictionary: Version 2017. Prince William County Department of Information Technology, GIS Division. Retrieved from


You are now leaving the official Prince William County Government website.