QUANTITATIVE REPORT due Friday
For the report on your surveys, start by describing your research question, your hypothesis or hypotheses, your procedures, your population and your sample. The idea of this section is to let the reader know what you did, how and why.
Then in your findings section, address your sample and present some univariate statistics: where/how did you find them? How many men and women? Whats the average age? Racial/ethnic composition? Whatever is relevant to your research. Also check your major independent and dependent variables. The point of this section is to present some univariate statistics that give the reader an idea of what you have done and with whom.
Next, test your hypothesis or hypotheses. Use the appropriate analyses for your variables. Include the relevant tables AND describe what you found in words. Here is an example: those whose parents asked for proof of their grades had significantly higher GPAs than those whose parents did not ask for proof (chi square = 5.54; df = 1; p < .05). Also include the average GPAs for both groups, so the reader can see the difference.
Generally, the rule of thumb in research is to use .05 as the significance level, ie., we call something a significant difference if it is significant at the 5% level. But in your projects, youre working with small samples, and it is entirely possible you do not find anything significant.
A difference that is not significant normally would not require a table, only a description (ie., there was no difference in GPA between students whose parents chose a major for them and those who chose their own majorchi square = .45, df = 1; p = .84), however, for our projects, I want to see whether you interpret your data correctly, so do include everything you would if it were significant.
If you have to reject a hypothesis, you will want to reflect on why there was no difference and why your hypothesis was rejected in your conclusion/discussion. Was it the sample? The questionnaire? Something else?
So, in summary, here are the steps to take once you have your data entered:
First, you will want to check for errors in data entry. One way to do that is to run frequency tables on all variables. Correct any errors you come across. Then the job of data analysis begins!
Start with univariates: frequencies (if you have loads of variables, include the most important ones here). Give central tendencies and tables/charts for your key variables.
Present the analyses you did to test your hypotheses and answer your research questions.
If you are inclined to do so, and have the time, look at relationships among your variables other than the ones you hypothesized abouttheres rarely a data set that doesnt have at least some unexpected relationships in it.
The elements of your report should be something along these lines:
Introduction (short intro to topic, ending in the hypotheses)
Findings (univariates, bivariates to test your hypothesesexplain in words what the output means)
Discussion/conclusion in which you summarize your findings and discuss their implications)