Chapter 6: test bank some answers and comments on the text discussion questions

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some answers and comments on the text discussion questions

  1. Certainly, if minorities have less power. Think of blacks in South Africa during apartheid, or women throughout the world today. This brings up another interesting point. Studies indicate that at some point in the relatively near future, minority persons of all sorts will outnumber whites in the U.S. This does not mean that whites will be a minority in the sociological sense.

  1. With regard to women, the major factors are occupation and being in and out of the labor market instead of continuously engaged in it. With regard to blacks, education, occupation, and residence (not living where the good jobs are) are important.

  1. Education and income are directly related, but other factors explain more of the differences between various groups than does years of education. These factors include occupation, continuity in the labor force, residence, and personal factors.

  1. We do not think it is as widespread as it used to be.

  1. Occupational segregation has decreased over time between whites and blacks more than it has between men and women. There are still some occupations that are clearly “women’s work,” despite the decreasing social pressure on young women.

  1. The data do not support the idea of reverse discrimination. White males are still clearly better off than women or minorities.

  1. Statistics show that the greater the percentage of women in an occupation, the less its stature and pay scale.

  1. Individual choice and cultural factors contribute to the same effects as discrimination.

suggested test questions

Multiple-Choice Questions
1. Which of the following is a true statement?

  1. More African Americans live in northern states than southern states.

  2. A larger proportion of African Americans are central cities dwellers than of Whites.

  3. The Asian American birthrate is lower than the white birth rate.

  4. Most Hispanics live in the industrial states of the northeast.

2. Which of the following is clearly an instance of discrimination?

  1. an orthopedic surgeon earns more than a pediatrician.

  2. the chancellor’s secretary earns more than the Economics Department secretary.

  3. a male factory worker earns more than a female worker doing the same job and rated equally efficient by her supervisor.

  4. a nurse practitioner earns less than the doctor who supervises her.

3. According to Becker’s “taste for discrimination” model, discrimination:

  1. occurs because some employers are prejudiced.

  2. occurs because employing members of the group discriminated against will impose a psychic cost on prejudiced employers.

  3. will end without any government intervention.

  4. all of the above.

4. Statistical discrimination:

  1. is clearly illegal and almost never practiced.

  2. involves judging prospective employees on the basis of their group rather than individually.

  3. increases the costs of the discriminator.

  4. all of the above.

5. Among the effects of discrimination are:

  1. the national output is less than it could be.

  2. ethnic minorities, but not women, have lower incomes.

  3. men have lower incomes.

  4. women have much higher unemployment rates than men.

6. Among the problems in measuring the extent of discrimination is:

  1. there is very little data available on the income of various groups.

  2. some income differences are the result of choice and cultural factors, not discrimination.

  3. discrimination is illegal and therefore it is hard to get information.

  4. all of the above.

7. Among the arguments against affirmative action in the U.S. is:

  1. all discrimination has clearly been eliminated, so affirmative action programs are no longer needed.

  2. it results in reverse discrimination against white males.

  3. it is the only way to reverse historic patterns of discrimination.

  4. discrimination does not seem to be disappearing without such programs.

8. Among the arguments for affirmative action in the U.S. is:

  1. the higher costs of discriminating employers put them at a significant cost disadvantage in comparison to non-discriminators.

  2. it results in tokenism and quotas.

  3. it is the only way to reverse historic patterns of discrimination.

  4. it results in reverse discrimination against white males.

9. Government data indicate that if we control for level of education:

  1. men and women have equal incomes.

  2. Whites, Blacks, and Hispanics have equal incomes.

  3. men have larger incomes than women, while Whites have higher incomes than Blacks or Hispanics.

  4. discrimination on the basis of race no longer exists.

10. Affirmative action programs were begun as the result of:

  1. the Equal Pay Act of 1963.

  2. the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

  3. executive orders in the 1960s.

  4. the Kerner Commission report.

11. If an employer pays a black woman a lower wage than a similarly qualified and experienced man doing the same job, it is an example of:

  1. occupational crowding.

  2. wage discrimination.

  3. discrimination in human capital.

  4. employment discrimination.

12. Discrimination that segregates qualified women into lower paying jobs is called:

    1. occupational crowding.

    2. wage discrimination.

    3. discrimination in human capital.

    4. employment discrimination.

13. Which of the following is a good example of occupational crowding?

  1. Ninety-seven percent of all secretaries are women.

  2. Women secretaries have higher unemployment rates than men secretaries.

  3. Secretaries earn 40 percent of their bosses’ pay.

  4. Women secretaries are given less on-the-job training than male salesmen.

14. Census data comparing earnings by gender and race:

  1. provide proof that discrimination exists.

  2. provide proof that no discrimination exists.

  3. must be interpreted cautiously because culture and individual choice may explain the observed differentials.

  4. must be interpreted cautiously because they are politically sensitive.

15. Conservatives argue that current anti-discrimination policies, such as affirmative action, are:

  1. insufficient because they do not correct the effects of past discrimination.

  2. attack only the demand side of the labor market, when the real problem is that there is an inadequate supply of women or minority workers in high-paying fields such as computer science.

  3. are ineffective because they conflict with union hiring policies.

  4. are unnecessary because competitive firms cannot afford to hire on the basis of anything other than workers’ productivity.

16. An employer who is willing to pay higher wages to avoid employing persons from some group that he/she is prejudiced against is said to have:

  1. a taste for discrimination.

  2. no business sense.

  3. a taste for justice.

  4. a mean personality.

17. About what percent of the average full-time male worker is the earnings of the average full-time female worker?

  1. 110

  2. 90

  3. 75

  4. 56

18. The black to white earnings ratio is in which of the following ranges?

  1. 90-100%

  2. 80-90%

  3. 70-80%

  4. 50-60%

19. The black unemployment ratio is about ___________ that of whites.

  1. the same

  2. twice

  3. three times

  4. four times

20. According to the 2000 census, the largest U.S. racial or ethnic minority group is:

  1. African Americans

  2. Asians

  3. Hispanics

  4. Native Americans


F 1. Labor market discrimination clearly has been eliminated in the U.S.
F 2. It is easy to separate out the effects of discrimination and the impact of past rational choices when looking at income statistics.
T 3. Human capital discrimination occurs when some groups arbitrarily receive more or better education than others.
T 4. Wage discrimination occurs when some groups arbitrarily are paid at lower wage rates than other groups.
F 5. Whites are no more likely to own the homes they live in than are minorities.
F 6. Red lining is discrimination in health care.
T 7. Infant and maternal death rates are higher for Blacks than for Whites in the U.S.
F 8. You cannot be a minority unless you belong to a group whose numbers are smaller than the dominant group.
T 9. Labor market discrimination means treating equally productive workers differently on the basis of some arbitrary characteristic.
T 10. Occupational segregation means that there are men’s jobs and women’s jobs and jobs traditionally held by Whites while others are held by African Americans.
T 11. The fastest growing U.S. ethnic or racial minority is Hispanics.
T 12. Hispanic people may be of any race.
T 13. The U.S. population is growing more diverse over time.
F 14. African Americans are as likely to be homeowners as whites.
F 15. Discrimination decreases the national output, but it does not redistribute it.
T 16. Discrimination benefits some groups while hurting others.
F 17. Differences in education explain all the earnings differences between blacks and whites.
T 18. If a group is subject to employment discrimination, members of the groups will be last hired and first fired, so they will have a higher unemployment rate.
T 19. Promoting a healthy economy with low unemployment is an anti-discrimination policy.
T 20. A criticism of affirmative action is that it results in tokenism.

short answer questions

  1. The labor markets for men and women are shown below. Draw the shift that would occur in each market if occupational segregation were ended. What would happen to the average women’s wage?_________________ , to the average men’s wage? ____________________

  1. Indicate the effect of occupational discrimination on the production possibilities curve graph below. What would happen if occupational discrimination were eliminated? ____________________

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