Professor Shortell's blog

Group Exercise: Sampling

Each group will design a sampling strategy for a hypothetical social research project. First, identify the study population. Next, discuss how you could draw a sample from that population. Indicate what strategy you would choose -- purposive or probability -- briefly how you would construct the sample, and why that strategy is the best practical one for the study. (Do not discuss how you would conduct the study itself; this exercise is just about sample design.)

Remember to include the names of all group members in your response, posted in the comments to this page.

  1. A study of urban police officers' attitudes towards political protests.
  2. A study of the reading habits of Hispanic adults in New York City.
  3. A study of affirmative action hiring in U.S. hospitals.
  4. A study of gender socialization among immigrants to the U.S.
  5. A study of the social networks of home-schooled children in New York State.

Group Exercise: Dataframes and Crosstabulations

We're going to create a crosstabulation and discuss it, in order to reinforce levels of measurement, and to ease you into working with R.

Code:
http://www.courseserve.info/files/SOCY7112intro.r

Codebook and questionnaire:
http://www.courseserve.info/files/ABC2010.pdf
http://www.courseserve.info/files/ABC2010Questionnaire.pdf

Exercise:
Each group will produce a new crosstabulation and interpret the results. Specify the variables you used (give the variable names in ABC2010 so that we can reproduce the table, if needed. Remember to include everyone's name.

Group Exercise: Operationalization

I'll assign each group a concept. Operationalize the concept into a categorical and numeric variable. Assess the reliability and validity.

Post your response as a comment to this page. Remember to include the names of everyone in your group so I can give you participation credit.

  1. alienation
  2. social class
  3. prejudice
  4. ambition
  5. political participation

Welcome, Fall 2013

Note: I've changed the email address for my course sites to professor AT courseserve DOT info to reduce spam in my inbox. You can contact me at this address, or if you are a student in this course, login and use the contact form.

Welcome to SOCY 7112, Introductory Statistics. This is the first semester of the required two-semester sequence in quantitative analysis in the Sociology MA program.

I've created accounts for each of you. Your username is your first name followed by a space and the first letter of your last name. For example, the great sociologist Max Weber would have the username: Max W

The password for your account is your CUNYfirst ID. You can change your password after you login by clicking on the "My account" link in the left margin and then on "edit"; if you type (and confirm) a new password and click submit your password will be changed.

Please check that the email address associated with your username is correct, as I will use the course site to communicate with you during the semester. You can change your email address by clicking on the "My account" link and then on "edit."

About This Course

30 hours plus conference; 3 credits

Descriptive and inferential statistics appropriate for analysis of sociological data. Emphasis on concepts and implications of sociological statistics rather than on mathematical foundations. Critical survey of statistical reasoning in major sociological studies.

Sampling

Who is being studied can, obviously, have an important influence on what relationships are found. The history of political polling shows what can happen when mistakes are made with sampling. A good sample is one that allows the researcher to generalize to the relevant population.

But, why sample at all? Why not just study the population directly?

A study of a population would avoid the problems of sampling altogether. We refer to a CENSUS as a direct study of the population. The biggest impediment to research on census data is, as you might guess, the expense. The costs in time and money required for a census, of even a relatively limited study population, are prohibitive. Even if we had an unlimited budget, and all the time in the world, it is often impossible to include every member of a population in a study.

Given these limitations, researchers know that they are stuck with the business of sampling.

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