Exercise 3: Why?

Deepen your investigation. In chapters 10 thru 15 of Bowling Alone, Putnam provides explanatory factors WIKI Link to help answer the question:

  • Why has community declined in America?

On page 187 of chapter 10, Putnam writes, "The mysterious disengagement of the last third of a century has afflicted all echelons of our society." Next, Putnam provides a long list of possible explanatory factors for the "crime" of disengagement--explanatory factors from which independent variables will be worked out in the ensuing chapters. This list is so long that Putnam then writes, "Most respectable mystery writers would hesitate to tally up this many plausible suspects, no matter how energetic their detective. . . . but we must begin to winnow the list."

This exercise will introduce you to the difference between cross-sectional analysis and analysis over time. It will also introduce you to the idea of testing hypotheses WIKI Link using quantitative data. Finally, this exercise will teach you how to run and interpret crosstabulations in SDA.

A. Reading

B. Learning and Practicing: Running and Interpreting Crosstabulations With Two Variables

  • Learn how to run and interpret crosstabulations with two variables

  • Practice open in new window running a crosstabulation on "Did volunteer work" (volunt) and "Size of city residence" (citysize)

  • Questions 4-5

C. Learning and Practicing: Crosstabulations With a Third Control Variable

  • Learn how to run and interpret crosstabulations with a control variable

  • Practice open in new window running a crosstabulation on "Did volunteer work" (volunt) and "Size of city residence" (citysize), with "Work status" (emplmrg3) as a control variable

  • Questions 6-7

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