Research Paper Help!


New Member
My question is simple...I am doing a simple research paper to see if there is a relationship between district expenditures and reading achievement in students. I have 152 district expenditures along with the reading scores for each. What test(s) should I run to see if there is a relationship? BTW I'm using the SPSS software
You may be able to do a linear regression if your reading scores and your expenditures are normally distributed. But it would be my assumption that the expenditures are not (money rarely is). Since it is your independent variable, you can try categorizing it into 3,4 or 5 groups. Quartiles or quintiles work well. As far as your reading scores, if those are not normally distributed, you need to think of some sort of a transformation or perhaps breaking it into groups as well. Also you have the district demographics that need to be taken into consideration. What if it is not the expenditures but the socio-economic status of the districts that drive the reading scores? What about percentage of non-english speakers? How about the size of the district? A larger district will have greater expenditures, may be you need to consider expenditures per child instead. Also the larger districts will have more administrative personnel, that also need to be accounted for. There are probably other factors that I am not thinking of at this moment.

Jenny Kotlerman