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Testing Work-Family Hypotheses Using the General Social Survey
Sociology of the Family
This assignment requires the use of the Survey Documentation and Analysis website at UC Berkeley to develop and test
hypotheses on a variety of work-family issues. You will choose variables from a list of work and family-related variables
in the General Social Survey to include in your hypotheses. After testing your hypotheses, you must use at least two
sociological theories to explain your findings. This assignment is intended to provide you with some experience in
writing, testing, and explaining hypotheses without having to collect your own data. Your paper must be typed, doublespaced, and be 6-8 pages in length, excluding cover and references pages.
The variables you will be analyzing come from the General Social Survey. The data are available using the Survey
Documentation and Analysis website at UC Berkeley http://sda.berkeley.edu/sdaweb/analysis/?dataset=gss18. You will
be using the GSS Cumulative Datafile 1972-2018 and the cross-tabulation feature of the website for your analyses.
However, you will only be using data from either 2016 or 2018 so that your results are more timely. I will demonstrate in
a video how to use the SDA data analysis software, including how to enter the variables, select the proper options, and
interpret the tables and statistical results.
Using the list of variables below, you will select five to be your dependent variables (what you want to explain).
Next, you will select four to five additional variables that will serve as your independent variables (the causes). After you
have selected your variables, you are to formulate hypotheses (predictions) based on how you think these variables might
be related to one another. Do not perform any analyses before writing your hypotheses.
Here is what your paper must contain:
1. Introduction (1½ pages in length):
Describe in a few paragraphs all of the independent and dependent variables you will be using in your analyses.
Briefly explain why you selected these variables. For instance, are they more timely or important issues facing
working couples than the other variables, etc? Note: Do NOT just give me a list of the variables, i.e. FAMVSWK,
but instead, tell me what the variables are.
2. Hypotheses (1½ to 2 pages in length):
In this section, describe how your independent variables are related to your dependent variables. Be sure to
explain why you believe each variable is related (and how) to your dependent variable. Give me roughly a
paragraph for each hypothesis. You must develop a hypothesis for each relationship for a total of five.
Note: for your analyses, be sure to enter your independent variables as the column variables and your dependent
variables as your row variables. Before running your cross-tabulation analyses, make sure you have selected
“summary statistics” under Output Options so that the program generates a chi-square result with a probability
level so that you can determine statistical significance.
3. Results (about 1½ to 2 pages in length):
You need to report a few things here: For each hypothesis, provide a general summary of the crosstabulation table
using the column percentages, report the Pearson chi-square results (chi-square number and probability), and
whether or not your hypothesis is supported. Be sure to do this for each hypothesis.
4. Theoretical Explanation (about 1½ to 2 pages in length):
Here you will provide a theoretical explanation of your findings using one or two sociological theories, regardless
of whether or not your hypotheses were supported. You can use any sociological theory covered in the textbook
or in class. In other words, what accounts for the relationships or lack of relationships among your variables?
Include a reference section if you cited research in your paper (articles and/or books). Cite your sources according
to the ASA standard I have included in Blackboard.
Data Set Options:
2018 Data Set: These variables can be used as either independent or dependent variables:
Questions specifically dealing with family life:
1. Famvswk: How often do the demands of your family interfere with your work on the job?
2. Famwkoff: How hard is it to take time off during your work to take care of personal or family
3. Wkvsfam: How often do the demands of your job interfere with your family life?
Questions specifically dealing with work:
1. Mustwork: When you work extra hours on your main job, is it mandatory?
2. Respect: Agree/Disagree (At the place where I work, I am treated with respect)
3. Satjob: On the whole, how satisfied are you with the work you do?
4. Secondwk: Do you have any jobs besides your main job or do any other work for pay?
5. Wkdecide: In your job, how often do you take part with others in making decisions that affect
6. Workdiff: Agree/Disagree (I get to do a number of different things on my job)
7. Workfast: Agree/Disagree (My job requires that I work very fast)
8. Wrkhome: How often do you work at home as part of your job?
2016 Data Set: These variables can be used as either independent or dependent variables:
Questions specifically dealing with family life:
1. Famorjob: Would you sacrifice job opportunities for family?
2. Joborfam: Would you remain in an unsatisfying job for family?
3. Wkathome: How often do you work from home
Questions specifically dealing with work:
1. Chngewrk: I would change my work for something different.
2. Extrawrk: Did you work multiple jobs last year?
3. Flexhrs1: Importance of flexible hours at work.
4. Mortravl: I would accept a longer commute.
5. Moveinus: I would move within the USA for work.
6. Satjob: How satisfied are you with your job (or housework)?
7. Stresswk: Amount of stress at work in the past two weeks.
8. Wkwkends: Do you work weekends?
9. Worecsup: Do you worry about losing economic support?
List of variables from the 2016 and 2018 GSS that can be used as independent variables only:
1. Babies – Household members less than 6 years old for respondent.
2. Childs – Number of children respondent has.
3. Degree – Highest degree of respondent.
4. Marital – Marital status of respondent.
5. Race – Race of respondent. Sex – Sex of respondent.
How to Use the Website to Run Your Hypotheses:
Visit the UC Berkeley Survey Documentation and Analysis website (click here) in order to access the General
Social Survey data. Then, click on the link entitled “General Social Survey (GSS) Cumulative Datafile 1972-
2018 – release 1 (SDA 4.0).” Make sure that you are using the Frequencies/Crosstabulations Program (it
defaults to this, but you can also get there by selecting that option in the “Analysis Pull-Down Menu.”
Once you are ready to run your crosstabulations for your pairings of independent and dependent variables, you
will type in the name of the independent variable in the COLUMN field, then type in the name of the dependent
variable in the ROW field. Next, if you are using variables from the 2016 data set, then type year(2016) in the
SELECTION FILTER(S) field. If you are using data from the 2018 data set, then replace 2016 with 2018. Lastly,
you MUST check the box for Summary Statistics under Output Options. Everything else can be left alone. After
that, click on the button for “Run the Table.”
To summarize, you type in your variable names in the proper fields, type “year(2016)” or “year(2018)” in
the Selection Filter field, check the box for summary statistics under Output Options, and then run the
To copy and paste your tables into your Word file, you simply choose “select all” to highlight the table in the
output window, select “copy,” and then go to your Word document and paste the table using “keep source
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