Data and Unemployment

United States Unemployment Census, November 16 – 20. 1937? Poster collection, Hoover Institution Archives,

How does data help to tell the story of the economy?

Download Primary Source Set: Unemployment 

This lesson focuses on how unemployment data can help tell us the story of the economy today. Using historical and current data, students will be able to determine if the current unemployment is high or low. In order to do so, students will:

● analyze data through various formats — graphs, charts, tables, and in text

● identify the source of the data

● understand the limitations of data in telling the whole story of unemployment

● recognize that making a claim that a number is high or low requires other numerical references to prove that a number is high or low The lesson provides tools for sourcing, reading, and analyzing data in graphical form and strategies for using data as evidence in writing.