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AQM: Data management using SPSS syntax (1 day school)

Date - Tuesday, 23rd May 2017 (9:00 am - 5:00 pm)


Booking opens Monday 10 April 2017

University of Sheffield, Room G39A, Hicks Building. 09.00 – 17.00

This course is aimed at a very wide audience, namely anyone who ever has to handle data using SPSS! It is particularly beneficial if you collect your own data and need to convert it to SPSS format, and/or have to create variables, merge data from different files, etc.

There are very few grey areas in managing data – your data is either accurate or it is not. And if it is not, then it is more than likely that the results from your analysis of it will be incorrect too. Learn to improve your data management skills and hence create more time for the more interesting parts of a study i.e. the analysis of it, safe in the knowledge that you are working from an accurate, fully documented data set.

Using the SPSS syntax language to import, organise and manipulate your data is substantially more efficient time-wise than using the menus, and has the dual advantages of simple repeatability and of providing an audit trail for your work. Course examples and data sets will largely come from survey data, but the skills learned are applicable and widely transferable to a wide variety of scenarios.

 Pre-requisite knowledge and target audience

Whilst some previous experience of using SPSS or a similar generalist statistical package via the menus (i.e. point and click) is expected, no previous experience in using the SPSS syntax language is required.

 Aims and Objectives

The course will cover the following topics:

  • Starting with syntax – why use SPSS syntax, the basics of writing and running syntax; determining when your command runs
  • Some simple SPSS commands – opening and saving files, describing data via frequencies, descriptives and crosstabs
  • Reading data into SPSS from other formats – handling text format, Excel format data,
  • Defining and documenting data, variable names, variable labels, value labels, missing value, formatting data
  • Creating new variables – recoding, computing, count, performing calculations on subsets via DO IF – END IF, making multiple calculations using DO REPEAT loops
  • Manipulating cases – selecting subsets of data for analysis, filtering files, splitting files, sorting cases
  • Manipulating files – aggregating files, restructuring files, matching files, adding cases, updating files
  • Data Management: a worked example – best practice for creating and managing a complex data set

Teaching Methods

The course will take the form of a mixture of teaching via examples worked through by the trainer on real data sets which participants can follow, exercises to practice the skills just learned, and a few short demonstrations of the further capabilities of SPSS syntax.

Summary

This course is aimed at a very wide audience, namely anyone who ever has to handle data using SPSS! It is particularly beneficial if you collect your own data and need to convert it to SPSS format, and/or have to create variables, merge data from different files, etc.

Registration

Leeds and York students register here.

Sheffield students register here.