A student asked: On your full length 3 in the psych/sociology section (Passage 3, Question 13) it is now the second time an odds ratio has come up and the explanation provided gives no insight into how to interpret the data which a huge part of answering the question. Could I get some help on this?
To answer this question, it is tempting to refer to Table 1, but that figure isn't referring to a total, cumulative probability; instead, it looks at what percentage of the population has experienced a year of poverty at different ages. So, a 58-year-old experiencing a year of poverty would be counted in the fourth row, but not in the other three (unless he or she also experienced a year of poverty in those ranges as well).
For this particular question, we should look to Figure 1 (which tells us the cumulative likelihood of having experienced a year of poverty) as well as Table 2 (which tells us the odds ratio which gives us information about the influence of several factors on poverty). Figure 1 is straightforward to interpret: from the data, the cumulative likelihood of having experienced a year of poverty increases with age. Table 2, the odds ratio table, is less straightforward to interpret. The way to think about these tables is as follows: If the odds ratio (OR) is 1, then the factor identified has no influence on the probability that someone has experienced poverty. If the OR is less than 1, that means that exposure (in this case, exposure is to one of the factors identified in the table) decreases the likelihood of experiencing the outcome (in this case, the outcome is a year of poverty). If the OR is greater than 1, then exposure to the factor increases the likelihood of experiencing the outcome. So, from the odds ratio table, we see that being non-white, female, unmarried, disabled, and having 12 or fewer years of education all increase the likelihood that someone would have experienced a year of poverty. Combining that data with the data in Figure 1 leads us to answer choice C: a 60-year-old Latina woman who never finished high school.
Hope this helps! Good luck!
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