So let me lead you through. I hope this helps.
Read both the assignment AND look at the template (I’ll attach both here for easy access). It is the template that will give you the structure.
Go to https://www.bls.gov/cex/pumd.htm and read the paragraph about ‘what this is’: “Public-Use Microdata (PUMD)The Consumer Expenditure Survey (CE) collects data on expenditures, income, and demographics in the United States….”
2nd Paragraph: “…check the availability of data with the Dictionary for Interview and Diary Surveys (XLSX).” This is where you find your variables. It is called a data dictionary and there are three tabs in the excel file that tell you what the variables are and what they measure.
Refer to the template and create a scenario. Here’s mine (as an example):
Scenario: The research focuses on the impact of expenditures (categorical) on the socioeconomic status of households in the District of Columbia. Data was gathered from 70 households chosen randomly from US Department of Laborâ€™s 2017 Consumer Expenditure Surveys. The socioeconomic and expenditure variables were collected from DC households using a limited interview process. (You need a plan describing what you will like to learn from the dataset available to you, and how youâ€™ll do it)
Variable Name in the Data Set
Description(See the data dictionary for describing the variables.)
Type of Variable(Qualitative or Quantitative)
Variable 1: â€œIncomeâ€
Annual household income in USD.
Variable 2: â€œExpendituresâ€
Annual household expenditures USD
Variable 3: â€œHousingâ€
Annual household housing costs USD
Variable 4: â€œElectricityâ€
Annual household electricity costs USD
Variable 5: â€œWaterâ€
Annual household water costs USD
Variable 6: “Reference Person”
The first member mentioned by the respondent when asked to “Start with the name of the person or one of the persons who owns or rents the home.”
Variable 7, 8, 9
Education of reference person, income before taxes, etc.
Reason(s) for Selecting the Variables and Expected Outcome(s):1. Variable 1: â€œIncomeâ€ – To show how impact of expenditures on income (where does the money go?)2. Variable 2: â€œExpendituresâ€œ – To show expenditures paid out (look for variables of interest to you)3. Variable 3: â€œ Housingâ€œ – To show housing expenses paid out annually4. Variable 4: â€œElectricityâ€œ – To show electricity expenses paid out annually5. Variable 5: â€œWaterâ€œ – To show water expenses paid out annually
and so on… do demographics make a difference? as in location (Washington, DC versus elsewhere), ethnicity, number of children, # of people in household, # of earners in household, etc)
or use any of the datasets that interest you. Just be sure to indicate WHERE you got the info. Also, see tables (there are 2 types: Regular and Experimental) Look through the data and consider what questions you might ask
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