SPSS

SPSS is a very easy-to-use and powerful data management and analysis software package that performs a wide variety of statistical procedures. The original acronym stands for ‘Statistical Package for the Social Sciences’. SPSS runs on Windows, Macintosh and UNIX platforms.  

SPSS provides a comprehensive set of flexible tools that can be used to accomplish various data analysis tasks, and has the option of using drop down menus or scripting. It is well-suited to accommodate different exploration strategies such as surveys and experiments in diverse fields of enquiry. SPSS is among the most widely used programs for statistical analysis in business, government, health, education, research and academic organisations.  

The Digital Skills Lab  is currently running a 4-part SPSS workshop series. Workshops will run throughout the year. Click on the links below to book your place or express an interest so that you are notified as soon as workshops are available to book. 

Please note that the content for the online and in-person workshops are the same. Unless (online) shows up in the workshop booking link, the session will take place on campus in LRB.R.08 in the lower ground floor of the Library following current government guidelines, i.e. masks and social distancing measures will be in place to stop the spread of coronavirus. If you are booking an online workshop please make sure you meet the technical requirements

The Department of Methodology also has some online tutorials in SPSS that were produced in 2011 that students have found useful along with a YouTube training channel. The Department of Methodology also provides training for PhD and MSc students as well as staff in the design of social research and in qualitative and quantitative analysis. Information on this can be found on their Methods training page.

If you can't find what you're looking for below, please email digital.skills.lab@lse.ac.uk or attend one of our drop-in sessions for advice. 

We also have workshops and self-study courses in Stata, Python and R. See below if you're not sure which is right for you. 

SPSS vs Stata: Which is right for you? 

SPSS is similar to Stata in that you can either use drop down menus or use coding to do analysis. SPSS deals better with very large datasets but is more expensive than Stata. Stata generally has better support available from various sources such as the statalist forum, documentation online and built-in help. 

SPSS vs R or Python 

SPSS is easier to learn than R and Python, providing easier access to running some types of analysis. It is still a popular choice in the social sciences, but R and Python are catching up. R and Python are open-source and freely available, where SPSS needs a licence, which can be expensive. R and Python are better options for data visualisation and machine learning but you will have to learn to code in order to fully utilise them.  

 

SPSS workshop series

Are you considering adding quantitative analysis to your research project and don’t know which is the right software? SPSS is a widely used program for statistical analysis in social science, used by health researchers, survey companies, government, education researchers, and can help you with:

  • statistical analysis
  • data management (case selection, file reshaping, creating derived data)
  • data documentation (a metadata dictionary is stored in the data file)

This SPSS series teaches you the basics of using SPSS for statistical analysis. At the end of this SPSS series, you will be able to import, manage, and explore data in SPSS, as well as perform various statistical tests. You will work with your fellow students or colleagues, utilising your prior experience, web searches, and in-application Help features to find the solutions.

If you don't have any prior knowledge of statistics or need a refresher, please have a look at Seeing Theory before attending this workshop. 

SPSS 1: Foundations of Data Management (Workshop)

In this workshop, you will learn how to get started with the SPSS interface and how to use it as a data management tool for your analysis. We will be loading in datasets, making and recoding variables and other pre-analysis steps.

By the end of this session you will be able to:

  • Work with the SPSS interface
  • Import data from csv and Excel files
  • Process imported datasets
  • Recode variables
  • Compute new variables

Click on the link below to check availability and book your place: 

SPSS 1: Foundations of Data Management

SPSS 1: Foundations of Data Management (online)

SPSS 2: Data Exploration (Workshop)

In this workshop you will learn how to explore your data pre-analysis in SPSS. We will be running descriptive statistics and making data visualisations to review and explore our data.

By the end of this session you will be able to:

  • Explore categorical variables with frequencies and bar charts
  • Explore continuous variables with descriptive statistics and box plots
  • Explore two continuous variables with correlations and scatterplots

Click on the link below to check availability and book your place: 

SPSS 2: Data Exploration

SPSS 2: Data Exploration (online) 

SPSS 3: Introduction to inferential statistics (Workshop)

In this workshop you will learn how to get started with inferential statistics in SPSS. We will be performing some fundamental statistical tests including: chi-square, t-tests, and ANOVAs. You will also try and form some of your own ideas and hypothesis from data, and use that to understand the statistical outputs.

By the end of this session you will be able to:

  • How to perform cross tabulation and chi-squared tests
  • How to perform different types of t-tests
  • How to perform different types of ANOVAs

Click on the link below to check availability and book your place: 

SPSS 3: Introduction to inferential statistics

SPSS 3: Introduction to inferential statistics (online)

SPSS 4: Regressions in SPSS (Workshop)

In this workshop you will learn how run linear regressions in SPSS and how to interpret the results. You will also try and form some of your own ideas and hypothesis from data, and use that to understand the statistical outputs.

By the end of this session you will be able to:

  • How to perform and interpret simple linear regression
  • How to perform and interpret multiple linear regression

Click on the link below to check availability and book your place: 

SPSS 4: Regressions in SPSS

SPSS 4: Regressions in SPSS (online)