With a population of about 311,591,917, the United States is also the third most populous country in the world. The United States is a federation of fifty states and one federal district, Washington, District of Colombia. The United States also possesses five major unincorporated overseas territories: Puerto Rico and the United States Virgin Islands in the Caribbean, American Samoa, Guam, and the Northern Mariana Islands in the Pacific. The United States is situated between the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans, bordered by Canada to the north and Mexico to the south.

Forty-eight of the fifty states make up the contiguous United States, and Alaska, while still part of the North American continent, is separated from the lower forty-eight by Canada. New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago, Houston and Phoenix are the five most populated cities of the United States. The fiftieth state, which entered the union most recently, is Hawaii, a chain of islands located in the Pacific Ocean.
While the United States is a diverse nation, the majority of Americans are descended from European immigrants, and African Americans are the largest minority group, followed by Asian Americans.

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