# Quantitative Literacy in Political Science? Howard Gold Department of Government Smith College.

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Quantitative Literacy in Political Science? Howard Gold Department of Government Smith College

Do you think that all students should be required to take one quantitative course at Smith College? Yes44% No38% Dont know or no opinion18% N=1,465 Source: GOV 312 Survey of Smith College students, April 6-16, 2006.

Do you think that all students should be required to take one quantitative course at Smith College? Source: GOV 312 Survey of Smith College students, April 6-16, 2006. HumanitiesSocial SciencesSciences Yes34%46%58% No46%39%25% DK or no opinion 21%15%18% n435502363

Do you think that all students should be required to take one quantitative course at Smith College? Source: GOV 312 Survey of Smith College students, April 6-16, 2006. 1 st year2 nd year3 rd year4 th yearAda Comstock Yes37%41%46%53%44% No45%40%35%32%36% DK or no opinion 19%20% 15%20% n35436729835393

Electoral Vote = 4.5 (Popular Vote) – 1.8 R 2 =.93. Standard error of the prediction =.077. If John Kerry wins.501 of two-party popular vote, this model predicts he will win.45 of the two-party electoral vote.

ForecasterExplanatory VariablesPrediction Standard Error of the Prediction Probability that Bush will win at least 50% CampbellTrial-heat question Annualized GDP 53.8%1.8%97% AbramowitzPresidential approval Annualized GDP Terms in office 53.7%2.0%92% NorpothTwo prior elections Primary elections Partisan balance in nation 54.7%4.7%95% Wlezien & EriksonLeading Economic Indicators Presidential approval Trial-heat question 51.7%2.5%75% Lewis-Beck and TienPresidential approval GNP growth Incumbent seeking re-election Incumbent party advantage Job growth 49.9%1.5%50% HolbrookPresidential approval Economic news Personal finance 54.5%1.9%92% LockerbieConsumer confidence Terms in office 57.6%2.5%92% Mean Prediction53.7% Predictions in 2004: Percent of Two-Party Popular Vote Bush will Receive

Lewis-Beck and Tien Jobs Model: Forecast for 2004 Dependent variable: Percent of two-party vote received by candidate of incumbent party. Explanatory VariablesCoefficient (t-ratios in parentheses) Plugging in the numbers for 2004 Constant31.16 (12.6)31.16 Presidential Popularity0.26 (8.2)0.26*47 GNP x Elect1.58 (4.7)1.58*1.32 Incumbent Party Advantage2.30 (4.3)2.30*1 Jobs0.59 (3.1)0.59*3.67 Adjusted r 2 0.96 Standard error1.52 Durbin-Watson1.28 Number of cases13 (1952-2000) Prediction: 49.9% Coding of Variables: Presidential Popularity is Gallup approval rating of the President measured in the first July poll before the election. GNP x Elect is the growth rate in real GNP during the first 6 months of the election-year multiplied by whether an incumbent President is running (coded 1) or not running (coded 0.5). Incumbent Party Advantage is coded as follows: 1 if incumbent candidate is the elected president (1956, 1972, 1980, 1984, 1992, 1996) or following a president who died in office (1948, 1964); 0 if incumbent party candidate has a tolerable association with the previous president (1952, 1976, 1988); and -1 if incumbent party candidate and the president are not united (1960, 1968, 2000). Jobs is growth in jobs over first 3.5 years of presidents term. Calculated as follows: (# employed in June of election year - # employed during January of inauguration year) # employed during January of inauguration year and multiply that by 100.

GOV 312 Survey of Smith College Students, April 6-16, 2006 Version 1 Much of the Smith College apparel sold in our bookstore is manufactured by companies that employ sweat-shop labor. Would you support an effort to limit the amount of apparel that these companies sell on campus? (N=786) Yes74.8% No10.6% DK/no opinion14.6% Version 2 Much of the Smith College apparel sold in our bookstore is manufactured by companies that employ low-income workers in developing countries. Would you support an effort to limit the amount of apparel that these companies sell on campus? (N=683) Yes62.4% No16.0% DK/no opinion21.7%

GOV 312 Survey of Smith College Students, April 6-16, 2006 Version 1 Evo Morales, leader of the Socialist Party, was recently elected President of Bolivia. Do you think that his presidency will be good or bad for relations between Bolivia and the United States? (N=784) Good for relations2.8% Bad for relations30.7% DK or no opinion66.5% Version 2 Evo Morales, leader of the MAS party, was recently elected President of Bolivia. Do you think that his presidency will be good or bad for relations between Bolivia and the United States? (N=681) Good for relations2.9% Bad for relations12.9% DK or no opinion84.1%

GOV 312 Survey of Smith College Students, April 6-16, 2006 Version 1 How likely are you to vote for the presidential nominee of the Republican Party in 2008? Extremely likely6.9% Somewhat likely9.1% Somewhat unlikely16.1% Extremely unlikely62.5% I will not vote or I cannot vote5.4% Version 2 How likely are you to vote for the presidential nominee of George W. Bushs party in 2008? (N=683) Extremely likely2.9% Somewhat likely4.7% Somewhat unlikely10.2% Extremely unlikely73.6% I will not vote or I cannot vote8.5%

Gender and Politics: Incorporating a Quantitative Module This module assumes no prior experience with statistics or data analysis. In the course of 2 lectures, students are provided with an introduction to analyzing survey data. The lectures cover: Independent, dependent and control variables Reading a codebook Creating new variables from existing ones 2-way contingency tables 3-way contingency tables Interpreting the chi-square test of independence Computing and interpreting a 95% confidence interval around the difference between 2 sample proportions.

The Gender Gap in Voting (American National Election Study, 2004) Pearson Chi-Square p-value =.084.

The Gender Gap in Voting (American National Election Study, 2004) Married: Pearson Chi-Square p-value =.448. Single: Pearson Chi-Square p-value =.043.

Presentation of Findings Voted for Bush Voted for Kerry Married men 58%42% Married women 55%45% Single men 42%51% Single women 32%67%

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