Comparing Means in Spss

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1 Chapter 7 Comparing Means in SPSS (t-Tests)

This section covers procedures for testing the differences between two means using the SPSS Compare Means analyses. Specifically, we demonstrate procedures for running Dependent-Sample (or One-Sample) t-tests, Independent-Sample t-tests, Difference-Sample (or Matched- or Paired-Sample) t-tests. Unfortunately, SPSS does not provide procedures for running Z-tests. For the following examples, we have created a data set based on cartoon 9.1 (Cow Poetry). To obtain our data, we have randomly drawn a sample of 30 cows from the population of cows owned by Farmer Perry. With the measurements we take from this sample we are going to ask three research questions. First, we are interested in the number of times each cow in our sample touches the electric fence and whether this sample differs from the larger population of Farmer Perry’s cows. We will test this hypothesis using a Dependent-Sample (One-Sample) ttest. Second, we are interested in whether different types of cows (Holstein vs. Jersey) in our sample differ in their fence touching behavior. We will test this hypothesis using an Independent-Sample t-test. Third, we are interested finding out whether our cow’s fence touching behavior is affected by completing Cow School. In this case we will ask two specific questions: a) does the sample of cows differ from the population of cows afer the sample completes school. We will test this hypothesis using a Dependent-Sample (One-Sample) ttest. b) Does the post cow school fence touching behavior of our sample of cows differ from the pre-cowschool fence touching behavior. We will test this hypothesis using the Difference-Sample (or Paired-

2 Sample) t-test. Setting Up the Data

Figure 9.2 presents the variable view of the SPSS data editor where we have defined three new variables (two continuous and one discrete). The first variable (continuous) represents the frequency with which the cows in our sample touch the electric fence. We have given it the variable name fencetch and given it the variable label “Number of Times Cows Touch the Electric Fence.” The second variable (discrete) represents the breed of cow for each of our subjects: Holstein vs. Jersey. We have given it the variable name breed and the variable label “Cow Breed (Holstein vs. Jersey).” Also, we provided value labels for the two breeds. The value of 1 was assigned to the Holstein label, and the value of 2 was assigned to the Jersey label. The third variable (continuous) represents the frequency with which the cows in our sample touch

3 the electric fence, which is assessed in the same way fencetch was measured. However, for this variable the measurements were made after the sample had completed 3 weeks of Cow School. We have given it the variable name fenctch2 and the variable label “Time 2 Fence Touch: Post Cow School.” Figure 9.3 presents the data view of the SPSS data editor. Here, we have entered the 30 cow’s data for our three variables. Note that there are two windows presented in the figure. The lefthand window (labeled A) presents the data for the first half of the sample (cows 1 to 15). Window B represents the same SPSS window, where we have scrolled down to show the data for the remaining cows (subjects 16 to 30). Remember that the columns represent each of the different variables and the rows represent each observation, which in this case is each cow. For example, the first cow touched the fence 2 times before attending cow school, is a Holstein, and touched the fence 2 times after attending cow school. Similarly, the 30th cow touched the fence 25 times before attending cow school, is a Jersey, and touched the fence 21 times after attending cow school.

Dependent-Sample (One-Sample) t-test The Dependent-Sample t-test allows us to test whether a sample Mean (0) is significantly different from a population mean (:) when only the sample Standard Deviation (s) is known. In terms of knowing when to use the...
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