Hello Again Everyone!
As I said last week, I met with my on-site mentor over the weekend to discuss my findings on intimate partner violence hotline calls across all 50 states during the pandemic. She advised me to use a smaller sample size and pick rural states with similar population densities, covid-19 restrictions and median household incomes, and pick the same criteria for urban states in order to control some variables. With the help of my advisor, I picked 8 rural states and 8 urban states, and then I started collecting more data for each state. I collected data on the change in the unemployment rate, labor force participation rate, poverty rates, anxiety/depression rates, and unmet mental health needs from January-June 2020.
With my preliminary data collected, I needed to find a way to analyze it in order to see if there was an urban-rural divide in the effect of the pandemic on mental health in populations of low income and intimate violence. Being completely new to statistics, I had no idea about the different methods or tests that can be used to analyze data. I assumed that I would just create graphs to compare the variables, but then I realized I could not do that since graphs only compare 2 variables at a time. I spent a few days this week learning about different ways to analyze data. I then decided on a method I would use to analyze my data. I decided to do both regression analysis and two sample T-tests. Regression analysis is used to determine the relationship between a dependent variable and one or more independent variables and to see if the relationship is statistically significant. A two-sample T-test is used to see if the difference between the averages of two population groups is statistically significant. I am using regression analysis to see if the effect of IPV, unemployment or low-income on depression and anxiety is significant. Then, I am using the two-sample T-test to compare the averages of these variables in urban and rural populations and see the urban-rural divide.
I will continue to run the tests and let you know the conclusions I find!