Integrating Data Into the Curriculum: Learning to Read Tables


Barbara Risman, North Carolina State University

Learning Goals


This assignment will help you learn how to:
Test hypotheses using quantitative data
Produce a bivariate table (bivariate means having two variables)
Evaluate the implied hypothesis (is the hypothesis supported by the data?)
Provide bivariate tables with a control variable
Evaluate the hypothesis under the conditions of the control variable

Context for Use

This exercise was designed for a sociology course. Students will look at race/ethinicity, family type and income in the United States.

This assignment will require you to locate three tables on-line (detailed directions are provided), print them out, interpret the data in the tables, and answer several questions on what you have learned from the tables.

Teaching Notes and Tips

This activity uses a customized data set made from combining census information from 1950-1990 and guides students through data manipulation using WebCHIP
software found at DataCounts! To open WebCHIP with the dataset for the activity, please see instructions and links in the exercise documents under teaching materials. For more information on how to use WebCHIP, see the How To section on DataCounts!