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Propensity Score Methods and Applications
A concise, introductory text, Propensity Score Methods and Applications describes propensity score methods (PSM) and how they are used to balance the distributions of observed covariates between treatment conditions as a means to reduce selection bias. This new QASS title specifically focuses on the procedures of implementing PSM for research in social sciences, instead of merely demonstrating the effectiveness of the method.  

Using succinct and approachable language to introduce the basic concepts of PSM, authors Haiyan Bai and M. H. Clark present basic concepts, assumptions, procedures, available software packages, and step-by-step examples for implementing PSM using real-world data, with exercises at the end of each chapter allowing readers to replicate examples on their own.

Series Editor’s Introduction
About the Authors
1. Basic Concepts of Propensity Score Methods
1.1 Causal Inference

1.2 Propensity Scores

1.3 Assumptions

1.4 Summary of the Chapter

2. Covariate Selection and Propensity Score Estimation
2.1 Covariate Selection

2.2 Propensity Score Estimation

2.3 Summary of the Chapter

2.4 An Example

3. Propensity Score Adjustment Methods
3.1 Propensity Score Matching

3.2 Other Propensity Score Adjustment Methods

3.3 Summary of the Chapter

3.4 An Example

4. Covariate Evaluation and Causal Effect Estimation
4.1 Evaluating the Balance of Covariate Distributions

4.2 Causal Effect Estimation

4.3 Sensitivity Analysis

4.4 Summary of the Chapter

4.5 An Example

5. Conclusion
5.1 Limitations of the Propensity Score Methods and How to Address Them

5.2 Summary of Propensity Score Procedures

5.3 Final Comments



Resource Center
Datasets to be used alongside the book are available for download. 

“Haiyan Bai and M.H. Clark have delivered a readable and easily applicable guide for eager researchers with data-in-hand, chomping at the bit to determine whether and how their empirical challenges might be addressed through the careful application of propensity score methods.”

Adam Seth Litwin
Cornell University

“This volume provides a thorough introduction to propensity score methods while taking care to not overwhelm the reader with dense mathematics. Simple examples, straightforward language, and a catalog of software options make this a fine primer for researchers seeking to incorporate propensity score methods into their own research plans, and an excellent desk reference.”

Christopher Michael Sedelmaier
University of New Haven

“This book contains excellent descriptions of propensity score matching with practical examples and clear guides using different software programs.”

Mido Chang
Florida International University
Key features


  • Written for substantive researchers rather than statisticians, the authors introduce the basic concepts of propensity score methods (PSM) using concise, plain language.
  • A FREE companion website includes statistical code, output, and interpretations for several statistical packages, allowing researchers to practice implementing PSM.
  • Clear, distinctive steps throughout the text instruct readers on how they can effectively apply PSM to their own studies.
  • Researchers are able to make modifications to analyses depending on data-specific conditions and the book provides helpful guidelines for which procedures are most appropriate.
  • Helpful checklists summarize when and how to use PSM, providing brief reminders of the fundamental steps in conducting PSM.

Sage College Publishing

You can purchase this book and request an instructor sample on our US College site:

Go To College Site

This title is also available on SAGE Research Methods, the ultimate digital methods library. If your library doesn’t have access, ask your librarian to start a trial.