POLI 300   Quantitative Analysis in Political Science [4 credits] 

The primary objective of this course is to help students understand and evaluate the kind of quantitative information presented in tables, graphs, and statistics in political science textbooks and articles and commonly invoked in debates concerning public affairs and public policy.  It also helps develop students’ own research skills.  It focuses particularly on survey research on public opinion and voting behavior. Prerequisite: POLI 100 and a Math Placement sufficient for MATH 100. Note: not open to students who have taken POLI 302.   This course is taught every Fall.

Topics #12 and #13 will be covered during the two weeks following Thanksgiving and Topic #14 will not be covered at all.  

The Final Exam is scheduled for Friday, December 17, 1:00-3:00 PM, in PUP 208.  Please see me in advance if this time presents a real problem for you.  Problem Set #12B may be turned in any time through Tuesday, December 21, 5:00 PM (end of the final exam period).   Guide to the Final Exam  [updated for Fall 2010]

For those who want it, there will be a review session on Tuesday, December 14, at 2:00 in PUP 208 to go over questions on the Second Test and to address any other review questions. 

Two grading corrections with respect to Tests 2:
       If you answered (C) to M-C Q#9, one point has been added to your score and your grade has been increased by 0.16 of a grade point.
       If you answered “3” to Blue Book Q#1(d), present your exam book to me (at the final exam or elsewhere) and I will add one point to your score (and 0.16 to your grade).

Grades on Final Exam and Course 

Syllabus    [HTML]   [PDF]  

Bulletin Board (Q & A)

Guide to the Final Exam

POLI 300 Introduction  [PPT]

Information on Undergraduate Research & Creative Achievement Day (URCAD) and Undergraduate Research Awards

Senator Coburn's Amendment to Eliminate the NSF Political "Science" Program

Class Handouts 

          #1    Survey Research        [PowerPoint]
          #2    Random Sampling       [PowerPoint]
          #3    Variables                [PowerPoint]
          #4    Measuring Variables       [Power Point]
          #5    Frequency Tables, Bar Graphs, and Histograms   [PowerPoint]
          #6    Measures of Central Tendency (Averages)    [PowerPoint]
          #7    Measures of Dispersion 
          #8    Standard Scores and the Normal Distribution    [PowerPoint]
          #9    Relationships Between Variables and Measures of Association   [PowerPoint]
        #10    Crosstabulations    [PowerPoint]
        #11    Scattergrams       [PowerPoint]
        #12    Table Percentages and Association Between Variables  [PowerPoint]
        #13    Regression  and Correlation   [PowerPoint]   
        #14    Spurious Association, Causal Relationships, and Multivariate Analysis

Data and SPSS

          UMBC OIT Computer Labs Campus Locations
          SETUPS: ANES 1972-2008  [Handout #1A]
          SETUPS: ANES 1972-2008 Codebook  [Handout #1B]
          Data Analysis Using SETUPS and SPSS  [Handout #1C]
          Using SETUPS 1972-2008 ANES Data with SPSS  [Handout #1D]
SPSS Screen Shots  (PowerPoint)
          SETUPS 2004 (On-Line Data Analysis)
          Harvard-MIT Data Center's Guide to SPSS

Student Political Attitudes Survey

          Student Survey Questionnaire [Fall 2010]
          Student Survey Data  [Fall 2010] (PDF)
          Student Survey Data  [Fall 2010] (SPSS file)
          Student Survey Data  [Fall 2010] (Excel file)
          Student Survey Tabulations (PowerPoint)
          Cumulative Student Survey (plus ANES) Charts (PowerPoint)

Other PowerPoint Slides

          Trends in Party Support/Red States, Blue States [PPT]
          Vote for Black Presidential Candidate?  [PPT]

Problem Sets

          Problem Set #1A:   Introduction to SPSS
          Problem Set #1B:   Question Design
          Problem Set #2:      Sampling
          Problem Set #3A:   Identifying Variables
          Problem Set #3B:   Levels of Measurement
          Problem Set #4:      Measuring Variables
          Problem Set #5A:   Frequency Distributions
          Problem Set #5B:   SPSS Frequencies
          Problem Set #5C:   Frequency Bar Graphs and Histograms  [Attachment A]
          Problem Set #6:      Measures of Central Tendency
          Problem Set #7:      Measures of Dispersion     [Charts]
          Problem Set #9:      Specifying Relationships Between Variables
          Problem Set #10:    Crosstabulations
          Problem Set #11:    Scattergrams     Data:  Text    Excel    SPSS  [also with SETUPS/ANES data]
          Problem Set #12A: Table Percentages   [XTABS for Q1 and Q2]   [XTABS Q3]
          Problem Set #12B: SPSS Table Percentages
          Problem Set #13:    Correlation and Regression
          Problem Set #14A: Spurious Association and Confounding Effects
          Problem Set #14B: Control Tables
          Problem Set #14C: SPSS Control Tables

Problem Sets: Answers & Discussion

          Problem Set #1B: A&D
          Problem Set #2:  A&D
          Problem Set #3A: A&D
          Problem Set #3B: A&D
          Problem Set #4: A&D
          Problem Set #5A: A&D 
          Problem Set #5B: A&D 
          Problem Set #5C: A&D  [PPT]
          Problem Set #6: A&D
          Problem Set #7: A&D    [PPT]
          Problem Set #9: A&D
          Problem Set #10: A&D  [PPT]
          Problem Set #11: A&D  [PPT]
          Problem Set #12A: A&D
          Problem Set #13: A&D 

  Other Data Used in Class

          Ann Landers' Survey on Parenthood
          Party ID Pie Charts
          Historical Presidential Approval
          Bush Approval (Gallup)
          Bush Approval By Party ID (Gallup)
          Bush Approval, All Polls (01/01-01/07)
          Bush Approval, All Polls (01/01-08/04)
          Bush Approval, All Polls (01/04-08/07)

On-Line Statistical Demonstrations

        Statistical "Applets" 
        The Normal Curve: The 68% / 95% / 99.7% Rule
        The Normal Curve
        Normal Distributions
        Probability and the Normal Distribution
Research Randomizer

Political Science Blogs/Websites

         Political Arithmetick: Where Numbers and Politics Meet (Prof. Charles Franklin, U. Wisconsin)
         Fruits and Votes (Prof. Matthew Shugart, UC San Diego)
         Political Science Weblog (Prof. Henry Farrell, George Washington U.)
         Prof. Josep Colomer's Weekly Blog (U. Pompeu Fabra, Spain)
         Real Clear Politics

Polling and Survey Research

        Gallup Organization
        The Roper Center for Public Opinion Research
        National Election Pool
        American National Elections Studies (ANES)
        Inter-university Consortium for Political Research  (ICPSR)
        Census Bureau

        Statistical Abstract of the U.S.

        Current Population Survey

        General Social Survey (GSS)

        Panel Study of Income Dynamics
        National Crime Victimization Survey (Bureau of Justice Statistics)
        National Crime Victimization Survey (ICPSR)
        National Opinion Research Center (NORC)
        National Science Foundation

        Pew Research Center for the People and the Press
        British Election Studies
        Canadian Election Studies

Historical Data Processing

        Hollerith 1890 Census Tabulator
        Hollerith Code Punch Card

Presidential Elections (mostly 2004)

        Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections     
        Electoral Vote Predictor 2004 
        Election Projection:  2004 Edition
        Electoral College: Meta-Analysis of State Polls
        USA Today/CNN/Gallup Poll
        Washington Post Tracking Poll
        Presidential Trial Heats: A Daily Time Series (James Stimson, UNCH)
        2004 Presidential Electoral Collge Predictions
        Race 2004.net
        Electoral College Calculator

General Links

        Instructor's Homepage (bio, research, other courses, etc.)
        UMBC Political Science Department
        American Political Science Association
        Edward Tufte -- Visual Display of Quantitative Information

Media and Current Events

        Washington Post On Politics
        New York Times on the Web (requires free registration)
        The Times (London)
        The Guardian (UK)
        CNN All Politics
        BBC World Service

Resources for Political Science Research on Voting and Elections   (for POLI 325)
Resources for Research on Presidential Elections   (for POLI 423)