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Working as a census worker can be a great way to make some extra money while getting some exercise. As a census worker, you will go door-to-door and ask residents of your area questions from the census. Since some of these questions are of a sensitive nature, such as questions about marital status or ethnic background, you must have good interpersonal skills. You also need to know how to catalog information, do basic arithmetic, and follow a map. More details about the Census Taker's Test as well as other requirements for getting hired can be found below.


How Can I Become a Census Taker?

  1. Apply: You can apply for a field job at a Census Bureau Regional Office through the Census Bureau's website,
  2. Take the Census Taker's Test: Known as the Field Employee Selection Aid, this exam is required of all applicants. Practice ahead of time to ensure your success.
  3. Pass a Background Check: All applicants must pass a background check.
  4. Training: If you pass your exam and background check, you will be invited to four days of training, during which you will learn how to fill in the census forms, how to ask questions, and how to perform this job to the best of your ability.

What Is the Census Taker's Test?

The Census Taker's Test is officially called the Field Employee Selection Aid. It is a multiple-choice test that includes five sections:

  • Clerical Skills: The ability to classify and catalog information.
  • Reading Comprehension: The ability to understand, use, and draw conclusions from written information.
  • Number Skills: The knowledge of basic operations (addition, subtraction, multiplication, division) and the understanding of numerical concepts such as even and odd numbers
  • Interpreting Information and Evaluating Alternatives: The ability to understand maps and census procedures. You can find census procedures in the official census manual on the Census Bureau's website.
  • Organizational Skills: The ability to use logical reasoning to analyze, summarize, and extract information.

The Field Employee Selection Aid is comprised of 28 questions and it has a time limit of 30 minutes. It can be challenging, especially if you have not reviewed some of the concepts in a while. You can practice for the test using JobTestPrep's dedicated study resources, with study material for each section of the test.


Who Can Apply to be a Census Taker?

Census takers must fit the following criteria:

  • have US citizenship or a green card (or have a work visa and knowledge of a language that no available citizen possesses)
  • be at least 18 years old
  • be fluent in English
  • have a Social Security card
  • pass the Field Employee Selection Aid
  • have a valid driver's license

How Can I Prepare for the Census Taker's Test?

The Field Employee Selection Aid is by far the most important step of the pre-employment screening process. Be sure to pass your test by reviewing the concepts ahead of time and practicing. JobTestPrep offers study guides, practice tests, and answer explanations that will help you understand all of the material on the test, allowing you to pass it with ease.

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