Wednesday, January 08, 2020

How Many Books Do You Read in a Year?

If you read at least one book in the past year, you rank among the majority of Americans. According to a 2017 survey by the National Endowment for the Arts, 53 percent of American adults read at least one book in the past 12 months—excluding those required for work or school. The median number of books read in a year's time is a modest 4.8, and the average 11.4. Still, the numbers add up. Americans read 1.4 billion books in 2017.

Women are more likely than men to have read a book in the past 12 months (61 versus 44 percent). By age, readership is as low as 47 percent among 18-to-24-year-olds, but is 50 percent or higher in all older age groups. The figure peaks at 57 percent among 65-to-74-year-olds. Not surprisingly, reading books increases with education...

Percent who read a book during past 12 months
High school graduate only: 40%
Some college/associate degree: 55%
College graduate: 68%
Graduate school: 79%

Twenty-three percent of adults used an electronic device, such as an e-reader or tablet computer, to read a book in the past year. Sixteen percent listened to an audiobook.

Source: National Endowment for the Arts, U.S. Patterns of Arts Participation: A Full Report from the 2017 Survey of Public Participation in the Arts

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