Citizenship and Opinions: Data and Statistical Analysis
Chapter One discusses the differences in belief between high- and low-knowledge voters and nonvoters. This appendix reports statistical tests of the differences. The results of t-tests are displayed in Table A-1. Full details on the composition of the attitude indexes can be found in Appendix B.
The top half of the table shows average scores on the attitude measures. The first column in the bottom half of Table A-1 reports the significance level of t-tests for the differences between the average attitude of high-knowledge voters and high-knowledge nonvoters. (T-tests are two-tailed using separate variance estimates.) By convention, .050 is the cutoff for statistical significance, which means that in only 50 times out of 1000 would the difference between the sampled groups be this large by chance. We can have considerable confidence that the difference indicated in the sample is real, not due to chance, when this value is .050 or lower. The entry for the Liberal Feelings index is .016, which means that the t-test indicates a difference this large could be expected by chance only 16 times out of 1000; it is therefore judged statistically significant. Entries of .000 mean that the significance is even greater than .001.
Lending further credence are some statistics that those familiar with regression analysis will find significant. Leadership knowledge was entered as an independent variable into the regressions displayed in Table B-1 (located in Appendix B). The regressions included age, education, income, party and ideological identifi
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Publication information: Book title: Democracy without Citizens:Media and the Decay of American Politics. Contributors: Robert M. Entman - Author. Publisher: Oxford University Press. Place of publication: New York. Publication year: 1989. Page number: 141.
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