HOW TO USE (SPSS) PART 1- An easy way out.

spsslogoSPSS – (Statistical package for social sciences) is a tool used mostly within our tertiary institutions and some corporate institutions normally for their data analysis. So far, it is one of the easiest/ simplest tools used for data analysis. Not all have the opportunity to be tutored on how to use this tool. This therefore, motivated me to share my experience (knowledge) on how to use it. The objective of this is to help you use the SPSS tool without any help from a tutor as a beginner. Hence this is conducted in simple language.


First, for you to be able to use the SPSS application effectively, then you must be able to code your questionnaire. Most students are ableknow how to administer their questionnaires but unable to code it left alone analyze the data and that will be treated in detail in a latter post.



  1. Download and install an SPSS application on your PC or laptop.
  2. Open the SPSS application from your PC or laptop after installation.
  3. On the bottom toolbar we have the data view and variable view.



Data view: shows you the data inputs used in question.

Variable view: shows the variables one is working with.




4. Click on variable view;

NAME (2) resized

    a)In the column “Name”, input the number of question you intend working on but it should be one after the “q1’’.




TYPE (2) resized

b)      In the column “Type”, click the bar twice(the position of the cursor   as in the picture) to open a small box. In the box, click on string (most recommended) and press OK/enter to proceed.




WIDTH resized

c) kindly leave column “Width” and “Decimals”, . (For beginners you might not need it).




DSC04425 resized

d)     In the column “Label”, enter the variables you are working with. Eg. Sex, Age.






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e)      In the column “Values”, this is where your coding answers come to play. double click on the bar as in the picture. A dialogue box will open and at the column Value, enter the numeric value you assigned to your 1. Move to the space label and enter the coded answer in Male.




DSC04438 resized  When you are done kindly click on “Add” to add your inputted data.





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  • Go back to Value and enter 2, move to label and Female. When you are done inputting all your answers, kindly press enter to save your work and continue.




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NB: leave the part; missing, columns, align untouched.

f). It will be prudent and advisable to change all the input in the “measure” column to “nominal”.


DATA VIEW (2) resized

When you are done, click on the Data view which is located at the left button. You will see displayed the number of questions on the top bar. Move your mouse over it and it will display what the variables are. Eg. sex.




After, the above you are set to enter the data from your coded questionnaire, this part is just phase one of the work.

  • If you are working on 5 questionnaire as a starter, then you will be using the space 1-5 from the list on the left hand side.



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