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SPSS Survival Manual: A step by step guide to data analysis using SPSS Spiral-bound – 1 Nov 2010


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Product details

  • Spiral-bound: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Open University Press; 4 edition (1 Nov. 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0335242391
  • ISBN-13: 978-0335242399
  • Product Dimensions: 22.1 x 2.7 x 25.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (49 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 201,047 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Product Description

About the Author

Julie Pallant has spent many years helping students overcome 'statistics phobia'. She is Director of Research and Graduate Studies in the Rural Health Academic Centre at the University of Melbourne. She has worked as a counselling psychologist, and has taught psychology, statistics and research methods at a number of universities.

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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Chris VINE VOICE on 9 Feb. 2011
Format: Spiral-bound Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
In general, I think you can never have too many statistics textbooks, and this one is a reasonable addition to your shelf. The text proceeds through the basic assumptions of the commonest statistical tests you'd find in e.g. a social sciences research methods class, and is an OK guide to the use and interpretation of SPSS's output in response. There are a few things you should be aware of, though :

-The nature of the SPSS output is explained in, mostly, 1-3 solid pages of text which aren't well-segmented or placed under headings, and thus not particularly easy to read through - you're tacitly nudged towards reading through the entire 3 pages, whereas you may simply want to refer to something specific for a moment instead.

-The language used throughout requires a moderate degree of statistical knowledge to interpret in the first place.

-There are a few places where you'll read "this is outwith the scope of this book", which, while true, is not exactly helpful, although you will be pointed towards other, more comprehensive sources of further reading.

-There are one or two fairly definitive proclamations in the text which should be taken with a grain of salt; although a mathematical procedure, statistics and their interpretations are rather rarely absolutely definitive; often, it's implications rather than irrefutable prediction. For example, the note that one should "never" replace a missing variable with a column mean (p127) is more or less opinion than fact - there are times when it can be useful. Similarly, the cautionary note regarding interpreting correlation results from restricted populations (p124) isn't an absolutely cut and dried matter either.

In all, this is a decent reference book for the price.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Dr. Paul Ell HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 3 May 2011
Format: Spiral-bound Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
This book is an excellent guide to SPSS, or to be very specific IBM SPSS version 18. It is not an exhaustive volume containing in index-like detail all of the commands or purposes SPSS could be used for. Instead it provides a user-focussed approach to the software from the first principals of designing and collecting numeric data, to basic analytical techniques through to more complex procedures from regression at the simpler end to Factor Analysis. Very usefully the book not only describes how to conduct statistical analyses' but also how to interpret the results from SPSS.

Any software manual is at the mercy of program updates. SPSS is currently now at version 19, but the book remains largely unaffected by the software's revision. In part this is because it is not a description of every menu and option but deals with real applications of SPSS. For new users, or those who haven't used SPSS for a while, I'd recommend it.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Dr. P. J. A. Wicks VINE VOICE on 25 Mar. 2011
Format: Spiral-bound Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
This most recent edition of Julie Pallant's SPSS bible (I had an earlier version as a student many moons ago) continues to combine a number of essential elements: clear explanations of different use cases for SPSS; guides on interpreting the (often voluminous and poorly labelled) output; and example data files (from real studies) to practice on. Obviously this has been upgraded for more recent versions of SPSS (which for some reason have got worse interfaces since being acquired by IBM), but most significantly for daily use, the whole book is in a spiral-bound format rather than a traditional paperback or hardback textbook. Anyone who has actually tried to work from a computer while reading from a reference manual next to them should appreciate this concession to practitioners - who owns a paperweight anymore?

If I had PhD students, this would be their welcome gift on their first day. Essential.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Anne Rouse on 2 Nov. 2011
Format: Spiral-bound
I teach research masters and doctoral students how to conduct business research. Much of the teaching in this field is high level and abstract, but students stumble because they don't think through what has to take place, or because they don't pay attention to having clear, vetted data. This book provides essential and practical support for such students - so they are less likely to produce 'rubbish' research because of failure to attend to the housekeeping. Julie's book contributes to better university research, and ultimately to clear thinking and practical innovation.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Chris Parker on 28 Dec. 2011
Format: Spiral-bound
I am using this book to help me write up my statistics for my PhD. I gave up maths at 16 with a B at GCSE level, so to find a book that guides you through doing complex stats with absolute ease is incredible. It not only tells you what to do and why, but it also tells you how to write it up! If I have to use SPSS further in my academic career then I am buying this book! I have looked through a number of books on SPSS and stats, and this is by a long stretch the clearest and most useful. Ok, the downside to this book is that is isn't going to teach you SPSS for very advanced statisticians. But I am not one and never will be. I use SPSS as a tool to get my work done and nothing more. For what I need this book is perfect.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Bruce TOP 500 REVIEWER on 19 Mar. 2013
Format: Spiral-bound Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I have been using SPSS for many years now and have attended courses at SPSS HQ in Woking, where you get the best introduction to this software; but this book is a useful "aide memoire". I liked the large format and the spiral bound nature of this book, which means that you can fold it open on your desk and it is robust enough to last a long time.

The guide itself is a very practical approach to analysis and data mining - starting with getting the data in shape. I have been involved in a few projects where getting the data in a usable format has taken up over 90% of the total time. It then goes on to preliminary analysis, which is a very good idea, as many projects of this nature find nothing of statistical significance - I have been told by industry experts that two-thirds find nothing at all.

We are then on to look at descriptive statistics, which can be very useful and using graphs to look at the data. Then it's on to the real "meat" of the subject - with sections on things like correlation, regression, t-tests, chi-squared test etc. The book is generously illustrated with graphs and charts showing the kind of output you can expect and it is all split into logical chunks that are easy on the eye.

All in all, I found this book very useful to have on your desk, when using SPSS - although of course it's not much use to anyone who doesn't own this software or use it at work. I couldn't fault the approach, although I would have liked it to go further with visualisation and the kind of "add-ons" that are included in the software. I also would have liked some actual examples to work through - many other books on this subject include CDs with data sets and things to try. This book is a basic introduction, which is ideal for beginners, but it could have given you more.
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