Use of Spss

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SPSS Companion for Research Methods
Revised Third Edition

Melanie Arthur
Portland State University

Preface PART 1: BASIC MOVES IN SPSS PART 2: CHAPTER KEYED SPSS EXERCISES 1-Human Inquiry and Science 2-Paradigms, Theory, and Social Research 3-The Ethics and Politics of Social Research 4-Research Design 5-Conceptualization, Operationalization, and Measurement 6-Indexes, Scales, and Typologies 7-The Logic of Sampling 8-Experiments 9-Survey Research 10-Qualitative Field Research 11-Unobtrusive Research 12-Evaluation Research 13-Qualitative Data Analysis 14-Quantitative Data Analysis 15-The Elaboration Model 16-Social Statistics 17-Reading and Writing Social Research 1 31 31 32 32 32 34 36 38 39 41 41 41 42 43 43 44 45 47

This booklet contains a concise, user-friendly introduction to SPSS Student Version 11.0, with updates for SPSS Student Version 12.0, along with chapter-by-chapter SPSS exercises. The exercises have been organized to correlate with the chapters in Earl Babbie’s The Practice of Social Research, 10th Edition, but can be used with any Wadsworth social research methods or statistics text. The data sets referenced in these exercises are available for bundling with Wadsworth’s SPSS Student Version 11.0 CD-ROM and/or 12.0 CD-ROM. Instructions for accessing these data sets via SPSS can be found in the liner notes accompanying the SPSS Student Version CDROM.


INTRODUCTION For sociology and the other human sciences, personal computers have become a blessing accompanied by the obligatory curse. The blessing is this: Powerful, user-friendly programs like SPSS have made data analysis a lot easier. Not all that many years ago, the author of this guide was balancing Styrofoam cups of stale coffee and sleepy frustration at 3:00 AM, waiting for a de-bug run from a mainframe. And, yes, we were using early versions of SPSS back in those days. The guides were about the size of city telephone directories. Today, with SPSS versions 11.0 and 12.0, most of what you need to know is actually built into the software. Following the built-in tutorial will give you a rapid course in how to use SPSS. Think of this guide as a bridge. It’s designed to match up the material in your text with things you can do in SPSS. The obligatory curse is actually more like a caution. The ease of using a program like SPSS makes data analysis accessible to those who would as soon not when it comes to math and statistics. That’s not such a bad thing, but you need to remember that just as there was adding-in-your-head before calculators, there was a whole lot of intensive calculation labor and conceptlearning involved in data analysis back in the old days. Today, the tedious calculations are gone, but you still have to know the logic of sampling, how to collect data, and how to tell which statistical test is appropriate for a given level of measurement. And, if you’re going to ask SPSS for a correlation coefficient, you still need to know where those things come from and what they tell you.


LEARNING OBJECTIVES: What You’re Supposed to Get Out of Part 1 of This Guide → When to use SPSS → Basic navigation in SPSS A. Getting in B. Understanding the SPSS Data Editor and dialog boxes C. Understanding the use of basic tools that accompany the Data Editor and selected dialog boxes D. Getting out without losing what you’ve done → How to enter your own data into SPSS → How to define variables for SPSS → How codebooks are used to convert survey data into numbers → How to create, save, and retrieve SPSS files → How to produce and interpret basic data summaries → How to transform variables to make them easier to analyze and compare → Understand what the General Social Survey (GSS) is and learn how to import a data file into your SPSS Data Editor. → How to produce a bar graph from one or more variables NAVIGATING IN SPSS...
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