Statistical Software Access From Home

March 30th, 2020 by

Of all the stressors you’ve got right now, accessing your statistical software from home shouldn’t be one of them. (You know, the one on your office computer).

We’ve gotten some updates from some statistical software companies on how they’re making it easier to access the software you have a license to or to extend a free trial while you’re working from home.


Member Training: What’s the Best Statistical Package for You?

February 1st, 2019 by

Choosing statistical software is part of The Fundamentals of Statistical Skill and is necessary to learning a second software (something we recommend to anyone progressing from Stage 2 to Stage 3 and beyond).

You have many choices for software to analyze your data: R, SAS, SPSS, and Stata, among others. They are all quite good, but each has its own unique strengths and weaknesses.


Interpreting Interactions in Linear Regression: When SPSS and Stata Disagree, Which is Right?

December 20th, 2017 by

Sometimes what is most tricky about understanding your regression output is knowing exactly what your software is presenting to you.

Here’s a great example of what looks like two completely different model results from SPSS and Stata that in reality, agree.

The Model

I ran a linear model regressing “physical composite score” on education and “mental composite score”.

The outcome variable, physical composite score, is a measurement of one’s physical well-being.   The predictor “education” is categorical with four categories.  The other predictor, mental composite score, is continuous and measures one’s mental well-being.

I am interested in determining whether the association between physical composite score and mental composite score is different among the four levels of education. To determine this I included an interaction between mental composite score and education.

The SPSS Regression Output

Here is the result of the regression using SPSS:


Tricks for Using Word to Make Statistical Syntax Easier

March 13th, 2017 by

We’ve talked a lot around here about the reasons to use syntax — not only menus — in your statistical analyses.

Regardless of which software you use, the syntax file is pretty much always a text file. This is true for R, SPSS, SAS, Stata — just about all of them.

This is important because it means you can use an unlikely tool to help you code: Microsoft Word.

I know what you’re thinking. Word? Really?

Yep, it’s true. Essentially it’s because Word has much better Search-and-Replace options than your stat software’s editor.

Here are a couple features of Word’s search-and-replace that I use to help me code faster:


Creating Graphs in Stata: From Percentiles to Observe Trends (Part 2)

September 23rd, 2016 by

In a previous post we discussed the difficulties of spotting meaningful information when we work with a large panel data set.

Observing the data collapsed into groups, such as quartiles or deciles, is one approach to tackling this challenging task.  We showed how this can be easily done in Stata using just 10 lines of code.

As promised, we will now show you how to graph the collapsed data. (more…)

Converting Panel Data into Percentiles to Observe Trends in Stata (Part 1)

September 20th, 2016 by

Panel data provides us with observations over several time periods per subject. In this first of two blog posts, I’ll walk you through the process. (Stick with me here. In Part 2, I’ll show you the graph, I promise.)

The challenge is that some of these data sets are massive. For example, if we’ve collected data on 100,000 individuals over 15 time periods, then that means we have 1.5 million cells of information.

So how can we look through this massive amount of data and observe trends over the time periods that we have tracked? (more…)