Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Standards

The Revisions to the Standards for the Classification of Federal Data on Race and Ethnicity (OMB Statistical Policy Directive No. 15) define minimum standards for collecting and presenting data on race and ethnicity for all Federal reporting.

The OMB standards have one category for ethnicity—Hispanic or Latino—and five minimum categories for data on race: American Indian or Alaska Native, Asian, Black or African American, Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander, and White. The race and ethnic categories are presented as separate questions, and individuals can select multiple racial categories.

  • Ethnic Categories
    • Hispanic or Latino. A person of Cuban, Mexican, Puerto Rican, South or Central American, or other Spanish culture or origin, regardless of race. The term “Spanish origin” can be used in addition to “Hispanic or Latino.”
  • Racial Categories
    • American Indian or Alaska Native. A person having origins in any of the original peoples of North, Central, or South America and who maintains tribal affiliation or community attachment.
    • Asian. A person having origins in any of the original peoples of the Far East, Southeast Asia, or the Indian subcontinent, including, Cambodia, China, India, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Pakistan, the Philippine Islands, Thailand, and Vietnam.
    • Black or African American. A person having origins in any of the Black racial groups of Africa. Such terms as “Haitian” or “Negro” can be used in addition to “Black or African American.”
    • Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander. A person having origins in any of the original peoples of Hawaii, Guam, Samoa, or other Pacific Islands.
    • White. A person having origins in any of the original peoples of Europe, the Middle East, or North Africa.