Soc 331 Quantitative Literacy Assignment: Creating A Table

Soc 331 Quantitative Literacy Assignment: Creating A Table

This assignment focuses on teaching quantitative literacy using information available in the United States census. You will create a minimum of two charts in Excel showing data and write a 2-3 page paper interpreting similarities and differences between two geographic locations. What will you learn by doing this assignment? This assignment will help you: 1. Practice how to read and interpret statistical data. 2. Exercise critical thinking skills. 3. Review United States census data and how to use it to obtain information. How will this assignment relate to your future? Numerical information is a fact of life. It depicts trends, shows results, and reveals increases and declines. In career jobs, most organizations compile some sort of numerical data in order to write reports for management or the board of directors, seek grant funding, or justify program expenditures. Learning how to read and interpret statistical data will prepare you for career positions. Those of you planning on attending graduate school will have to complete courses in research methods, many of which use quantitative data information, and some of which focus on generating quantitative data for research purposes. Developing skill in reading and interpreting statistical data will also help you be successful in graduate school. How to complete this assignment: Open the United States Bureau website. 1. Click on the tab PEOPLE at the top of the page and then click on 2010 census home. (Note- you may find the 2010 census data in other tabs as well. It doesn’t matter how you find it, just that you find it). 2. Using US census data available on the US census website, select 2 Pennsylvania counties and find data for several (approximately 2-3) the following: • Population according to Race • Population according to Age • Population according to Home Owners Status • Population according to Median or Mean income • Population according to Educational level • Population according to Family size • Population according to those married and those single • Population according to Poverty levels Look critically at the data. Look for similarities and differences between the counties. 3. Create charts in Excel or Word to illustrate the data you have collected. (Your chart should be presented as a BAR GRAPH) Be sure to appropriately label each chart and make the charts meaningful by grouping related concepts (i.e. educational level, income, and employment or family size, number of children, and poverty level). 4. Next, based on the data you have captured and put into charts, (and after examining the data) develop 2 questions about these two counties. For example: • Why are the educational levels higher in county X and in county Y? • What has contributed to higher levels of unemployment in county Y than county X? 5. Finally, write a 2-3 page paper (in APA style) in which you do the following: • Describe the 2 counties. • Using the charts you have created in Excel or Word (and be sure to include them in this paper!), explain what these charts show and what the similarities and differences are. Explain the answers to your questions. • Finally, what don’t you know about these counties that you wish you knew? What questions do you still have about these two counties? • Be sure to provide a cover sheet and a reference page in APA style.