Introduce your research topic.
Explain what your topic is and introduce it well enough to make its sociological relevance clear. Try to establish why your audience should care about the topic.
You do not need to mention the specific variables you used in your analysis but you want to describe your research thoroughly enough that your audience has a clear understanding of what your analysis will focus on. For example, with the gender and mental health example that I’ve been using this semester, I would discuss that I plan to look at gendered differences in how people report on their experiences with depression as well as how often they have poor mental health days.
Summarize what you learned from the articles you included in your annotated bibliography.
You should focus on developing connections between the sources. Try to focus on ideas that are supported by multiple sources.
You should also focus on presenting the main ideas from each source. It’s not necessary to summarize things like the literature review or the research methods used. Assuming you are summarizing research articles, your emphasis should be on the authors’ primary findings.
Be sure to include all of your sources and give the authors credit. If you write your analysis, please ASA Style in-text citations.
Explain what relationship you expect to find.
You can think about this as a general summary of the relationships expressed in your hypotheses. You don’t need to review each of your hypotheses.
Ideally, what you learned from your annotated bibliography research should directly inform what you expect to find. You want to focus on those connections as much as possible.
For example, the literature on gender and health clearly establishes that men are less likely to take their health seriously, to visit doctors, or to even acknowledge that they have health problems. Based on that, I would expect to find that men are less likely than women to report experiencing trouble with their mental health. I’d like you to develop that connection in a bit more detail, but that’s all you need to do for this requirement.
Describe your research process.
Assume that your audience is people who have some basic sociological knowledge but are not familiar with the work you did this semester. You are going to want to include things like:
How you plan to explore the relationship you described in requirement number 3 (using crosstabs).
Where the data you analyzed came from (the GSS, be sure to mention the specific year).
The specific variables you used. Be sure to mention which variables are independent, dependent, and control.
How the data in your variables were organized. You don’t need to mention every category though. For instance, with the variables I used I might mention:
The gender variable was organized into two categories, woman and man.
One measure of mental health was how frequently respondents experienced poor mental health days.
Another measure of mental health was whether respondents had been told they had depression.
Summaries of your variables. You do not need to mention every category in your variables for this requirement either but you do want to be more specific. For the variables I have mentioned, I might explain:
How many women and men were included in the analysis.
How likely people were to report experiencing poor mental health days.
What percentage of respondents indicated they had been told they have depression.
You can include bar charts here if it makes your analysis easier.
Describe your crosstab analysis.
This is the work you did for the crosstabs assignment.
Include a copy of each of your crosstabs in the template that I shared in the crosstabs assignment. Do not copy and paste or take screenshots directly from SPSS.
Describe each of your crosstabs by mentioning:
The variables used and which ones were independent and dependent (see below for a description of the crosstab that introduces a control variable).
Your hypothesis for the relationship summarized in the crosstab.
Summarize the results of the crosstab. Describe the relationship it expresses.
Whether the results support or contradict your hypothesis.
What the Chi-square value indicates about the statistical significance of the relationship.
For the crosstab that introduces a control variable, please be sure to mention which of the previous crosstabs you used and then explain how introducing the control (using the Split File function) changed the relationship expressed in the initial crosstab.
Discuss your findings and conclude your study.
Summarize what you learned from the crosstabs analysis. The point of the crosstabs is to describe very specific findings in terms of the variables you used. Here, you just want to generally summarize what you learned and what you think was important Be sure to mention:
How much support you had for your hypotheses. Did what you expected to find hold true?
Whether the relationships were statistically significant.
How the inclusion of the control variable affected your analysis
Finish with a couple of important “takeaways” from your analysis. These can just be the main things you learned about your topic by completing this research but you might also mention whether there is a need for additional research or if there are any policies that should be introduced to address issues connected to your topic.
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