Use GSS data explorer to find out GSS variable information

 Task I: Frequency table

Now that you have imported GSS 2018 dataset into your SPSS and have learned how to use GSS data explorer to find out GSS variable information, you are going to create and post a frequency table of your variables. Complete the following steps:

Give your discussion title a unique label specific to your study/variables. Post a brief explanation of your topic which includes a bit of information about your variables: level of measurement, answer categories (yes/no, strongly agree, disagree, etc.), as well as the survey question used to collect data for this particular variable (refer to Discussion 1 discussion). Include a frequency table for each of your variables. Since you have two variables, one DV and one IV, you need to run frequency table for BOTH of your variables. When you are done, explain your outputs in no more than 5 sentences for each variable. Cite numbers in the outputs to support your conclusion. When you cite %, use the % reported in “valid percent” column. This column deletes all missing values, thus is “clean.”

To create a frequency table in SPSS

Open SPSS and open your GSS data file
Select Analyze
Select Descriptive Statistics
Select Frequencies
select open Statistics
Make sure that mean, median, mode, standards deviation, and variance are chosen and select “Continue”
​Choose the variable that you want to make a frequency table of and click the arrow (this will move it into the right ‘Variable’ box)
Select OK
Task II. Describe the measures of central tendency (mean, median, mode) and dispersion (variance, standard deviation) for each of your variables.

Based on what you have learned in the readings and lessons this week, identify the measures for each variable and explain what they tell us. Keep in mind that the mean is more meaningful for interval/ratio variables, the median or mode for ordinal variables, and the mode for nominal variables. What do these measures summarize for us about the variable’s data?

Task III. Create charts (bar chart, pie chart, or histogram depending on your variables’ level of measurement)

Presenting your data in graphic form is also important when conducting quantitative research. Based on what you have learned from the reading and the weekly lesson, create a graphic representation of your data. Your choice of graphing tool is purely based on a variable’s level of measurement. When you are done, explain your outputs in no more than 5 sentences for each variable. It is OK if your explanation is similar to the frequency table interpretation, since chart is a different data presentation on the SAME variable. Cite numbers in the outputs to support your conclusion.

Basic rules:

Nominal: bar chart or pie chart

Ordinal: bar chart or histogram

Interval/Ratio: histogram or line chart


To Create a Chart

Follow steps 1-4 above (without worrying about the statistics).
Select Charts
Select choice of format (depending on your variable’s level of measurement)
Select OK
Continue with steps 5-6
Copy all of the frequency tables and charts by copy and pasting them into a document (PDF, MS Word) and attach to discussion. If your table/chart does not fit to the page, choose “copy special” and then “images.” Paste images to the word document and the problem will be solved.

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