Occupational Prestige Ratings from the 1989 General Social Survey (ICPSR 9593)

Published: Jan 12, 2006

Principal Investigator(s):
James A. Davis; Tom W. Smith; Robert W. Hodge; Keiko Nakao; Judith Treas



Version V1

This data collection contains the prestige ratings that respondents to the 1989 General Social Survey assigned to various occupations. The purpose of the collection was to replicate the benchmark study of occupational prestige conducted by Hodge, Siegel, and Rossi (HSR) in 1964, while expanding the number of rated occupations to include all 503 detailed occupational categories in the 1980 Census. Additional titles were added from the HSR study and several other studies of occupational prestige, for a total of 704 occupational titles. Respondents were divided into 10 subsamples, with each subsample rating 110 occupations. The first 40 titles presented to each respondent were the same for all subsamples. As in the HSR study, respondents were asked to rate the occupations on a scale of 1 to 9. To promote comparability with the HSR study, both the nature of the task respondents were asked to perform (ranking titles) and the wording of the instructions were the same in both studies.

Davis, James A., Smith, Tom W., Hodge, Robert W., Nakao, Keiko, and Treas, Judith. Occupational Prestige Ratings from the 1989 General Social Survey. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2006-01-12. https://doi.org/10.3886/ICPSR09593.v1

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National Science Foundation (SES-8809289)


The occupational prestige ratings for this study were collected on the 1989 General Social Survey (see GENERAL SOCIAL SURVEYS, 1972-1990: [CUMULATIVE FILE], ICPSR 9505) by principal investigators James A. Davis and Tom W. Smith. The analysis of the prestige module and construction of the prestige scale were carried out by the late Robert W. Hodge, Keiko Nakao, and Judith Treas.

A national probability sample of 1500 was randomly divided into 12 subsamples of 125 respondents. Ten of the twelve subsamples were asked to rate 110 occupational titles. The first 40 titles were common to all subsamples, while 70 titles were unique to each subsample.

Noninstitutionalized English-speaking persons 18 years of age and over, living in the United States.

personal interviews

survey data



2006-01-12 All files were removed from dataset 3 and flagged as study-level files, so that they will accompany all downloads.


  • Data in this collection are available only to users at ICPSR member institutions.

  • The citation of this study may have changed due to the new version control system that has been implemented.
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