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Analyzing Inequalities

Analyzing Inequalities
An Introduction to Race, Class, Gender, and Sexuality Using the General Social Survey

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February 2017 | 232 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc

Analyzing Inequalities: An Introduction to Race, Class, Gender, and Sexuality Using the General Social Survey is a practical resource for helping students connect sociological issues with real-world data in the context of their first undergraduate sociology courses.  This worktext introduces readers  to the GSS, one of the most widely analyzed surveys in the U.S.; examines a range of GSS questions related to social inequalities; and demonstrates basic techniques for analyzing this data online.  No special software is required–the exercises can be completed using the Survey Documentation and Analysis (SDA) website at the University of California-Berkeley which is easy to navigate and master.  Students will come away with a better understanding of social science research, and will be better positioned to ask and answer the sociological questions that most interest them.


Chapter 1: An Introduction to Analyzing Inequalities
Introduction: An Introduction to Analyzing inequalities  
Social Justice Statistics  
Social Justice Statistics: Critiques and Limitations  
Chapter 2: Understanding Data – Critical Concepts
Overview of the GSS  
Finding data in the GSS  
Producing and Interpreting a Frequency Table  
Describing Variables: levels of measurement  
Describing Variables: Measures of Central Tendency  
Producing the Mean, Median and Mode in SDA  
Chapter 3: Analyzing Gender with the GSS
Introduction: Key concepts in gender  
Identifying variables related to gender  
Produce and Interpret a Bivariate Table or “Crosstab”  
Chapter 4: Analyzing Race and Ethnicity with the GSS
Introduction: Key Concepts in Race and Ethnicity  
Identifying variables related to race and ethnicity  
Produce and Interpret a Bivariate Table or “Crosstab”  
Applying a Filter  
Applying Control variables  
Chapter 5: Analyzing Class with the GSS
Introduction: Key Concepts in Social Class.  
Identifying variables related to socio-economic class  
Re-coding Variables  
Comparing the Mean Response for Different Groups  
Chapter 6: Analyzing Sexuality with the GSS
Introduction: Key concepts in Sexuality  
Identifying Variables related to Sexuality  
Applying a Filter  
Re-coding Variables  
Chapter 7: Analyzing Inequalities in Families
Introduction: Family change and family diversity  
Identifying variables related to Families  
Chapter 8: Analyzing Inequalities in Education
Introduction: Inequalities in Education  
Identifying variables related to Education  
Analyzing Inequalities related to Education  
Chapter 9: Analyzing Inequalities in the Economy and Work
Introduction: Inequalities in the Economy and at Work  
Identifying variables related to Work and the Economy  


Instructor Resources

Password-protected Instructor Resources include the following:

  • Answers to end of chapter multiple choice questions;
  • Guided answers for in-text essay questions; and 
  • Bonus multiple choice test bank questions for each chapter.


“This is an engaging, clear and well-organized introduction to the use of large data sets to analyze stratification and gender.”

Thomas Piñeros Shields
University of Massachusetts Lowell

“[It] include[s] basic research analysis principles and very good examples and applications [and] also manages to provide critical and progressive conceptual perspectives.”

Julia Nevarez
Kean University

“Grounding sociological theory in real-world examples using real sociological data is an absolutely important aspect of undergraduate exposure to the scientific method and sociological analysis.”

Lorien Lake-Corral
University of Maine at Augusta
Key features


  • Designed to be used in a range of 100-level and 200-level courses, including introductory sociology, social problems, and courses that focus on race, class, gender, or sexuality.
  • Introduces students to basic analytic techniques in the social sciences, such as frequency distributions, cross-tabulations, and comparisons of means.
  • No software purchase required—all exercises are carried out on the open-access Survey Documentation and Analysis (SDA) website.
  • Screen captures from the SDA website, and careful step-by-step instructions, are provided to help students with no previous data analysis experience.
  • Early chapters focus on single categories of difference and inequality; later chapters examine how these factors intersect within the domains of family, education, and work.
  • Multiple choice questions and open-ended exercises at the end of each chapter test mastery of the material and give students opportunities to extend their analyses to other questions.

Sample Materials & Chapters

Chapter 2

Chapter 4

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