Inferential Statistics in SPSS or Stata: Basics & Scope of Help or Grinds in Ireland
At Data Analysis Ireland, we often get students and researchers seeking help or grinds with inferential statistics using SPSS or Stata. This article first outlines the basics of inferential statistics using SPSS or Stata , and then outlines the scope of inferential statistics help or grinds in Ireland using SPSS or Stata.
Researchers and students frequently utilise SPSS and Stata, which stand for Statistical Package for the Social Sciences and Stata, respectively, for data analysis.
While initially SPSS and Stata were used mainly by researchers specializing in social science, SPSS and Stata have now become widely used in other disciplines as well like psychology, sociology, medicine, geography, etc. Both SPSS and Stata are extremely easy to use statistical softwares for inferential statistics. Inferential statistics using SPSS or Stata can, however, be slightly different as Stata is generally preferred to operated via commands or syntax, unlike SPSS.
Inferential statistics including hypothesis testing, t-tests, correlation, ANOVA, chi-square, Fisher’s Exact test, Wilcoxon Signed Rank test, linear regression, multivariate regression, multinomial regression, logistic regression, probit regression, ordered logistic regression, ordered probit regression, moderated mediation analysis, structural equation modeling etc. Students and researchers frequently come to Data Analysis Ireland for assistance or instruction on one or more of these statistical or econometric approaches in SPSS or Stata.
The most important requirement of doing inferential statistics using SPSS or Stata is to choose an appropriate statistical test
For most Bachelors and Masters thesis grinds, the students or researchers often need to choose between parametric and non-parametric tests when doing in SPSS or Stata. In layman language possible, parametric tests are those tests that meet specific requirements needed to run the appropriate test. One of the most common conditions of such tests is that the data is normally distributed, which can be verified by either descriptive statistics or Shapiro-Wilk test in SPSS or Stata.
An example of a statistical test meeting the normally distributed condition in SPSS or Stata could be if we are trying to estimate the statistical significance of the difference in mean income levels of males and females. In this scenario, we would first check if the data is normally distributed in SPSS or Stata using the Shapiro-Wilk test. If the data is normally distributed for both groups, we have met one of the conditions for running a parametric test in SPSS or Stata. It is imperative to remember that it is just one of the conditions. There are many other conditions which a student or researcher must check before running an appropriate statistical test in SPSS or Stata. Students can get guidance or grinds from Data Analysis Ireland to help them choose the right parametric test.
In contrast to Parametric tests, non-parametric tests usually are only undertaken when the assumptions to run parametric tests are violated in SPSS or Stata. For example, in the previous example, if the data was not normally distributed between mean income levels of males and females in SPSS or Stata, it would be a big indication towards running a non-parametric test. The simplest way we like portraying parametric and non-parametric tests are as Coke and Pepsi. They may not be perfect substitutes for each other but are nonetheless still substitutes. Similarly, parametric and non-parametric tests also work like this.
For every parametric test in SPSS or Stata, you will find an equivalent non-parametric test in SPSS or Stata.
For example, the Independent Samples T-test is a parametric test and the Mann-Whitney U test is a non-parametric test. Suppose a student or researcher appropriately identifies the correct statistical parametric or non-parametric test to run using SPSS or Stata. In that case, it will not just uphold their results, but also give them a competitive advantage of publication in appropriate journals. At Data Analysis Ireland, assisting and providing knowledge in choosing appropriate statistical tests in SPSS or Stata is one of the primary areas we specialize in.
Given that inferential statistics is such a niche and complex area, it is crucial to identify the scope of help or grinds in inferential statistics using SPSS or Stata. At our experience at Data Analysis Ireland, which has helped hundreds of students and researchers in Ireland with inferential statistics in SPSS or Stata, we believe there is a broad scope. The primary rationale behind is students and researchers getting less and less attention from their supervisors in assistance with SPSS or Stata due to their time constraint.
Seeking help or grinds in SPSS or Stata requires acknowledgment by students or researchers of their lack of understanding of statistics and econometrics. Moreover, it takes courage to seek help, and at Data Analysis Ireland, we always commend students or researchers who come forward to seek guidance. With Ireland becoming more and more research-oriented with a focus on evidence-based research, the scope for help or grinds in inferential statistics in SPSS or Stata is almost unlimited. Given the limited capacity of qualified personnel and funding with third-level institutions like TCD, UCC, NUIG, University of Limerick, etc, it would only be appropriate in the future if private enterprises like Data Analysis Ireland can provide specialized services in inferential statistics using SPSS or Stata.