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An EasyGuide to Research Design & SPSS

An EasyGuide to Research Design & SPSS

Second Edition

312 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc

An EasyGuide to Research Design and SPSS® is an essential resource for students to successfully navigate and complete research projects. Using a clear, concise, and conversational writing style, authors Beth M. Schwartz, Janie H. Wilson, and Dennis M. Goff cover all of the most basic and common designs and analyses that students need to know for appropriately testing a hypothesis. The handbook includes step-by-step instructions accompanied by ample screenshots for working with data in SPSS®, along with guidance on interpreting outputs and formatting results in APA style. The Second Edition features a streamlined organization, updated references, and new content on factorial designs, effect size, and G*Power. 


About the Authors
1. The Marriage of Stats and Methods: ’til Death Do They Part
We Want to Help

Basic Steps of Research


2. Nominal, Ordinal, Interval, or Ratio: Why Your Type of Data Really Does Matter
Nominal Data

Ordinal Data

Interval Data

Ratio Data


3. Designing Your Hypothesis: To KISS (Keep It Simple, Student) or to Complicate Matters
How Many Variables Should I Include?

How Many Participants Should I Include?

How Many Independent Variables Should I Include?

Including More Than One Independent Variable

Choosing the Number of Levels of Each Variable

Choosing Your Dependent Variables

Avoiding the Unmeasurable Dependent Variables

How Many Dependent Variables to Include


4. Why SPSS and Not Other Software, Your Calculator, Fingers, or Toes
5. Handling Your Data in SPSS: Columns, and Labels, and Values . . . Oh My!
The Structure of SPSS

When to Create Your Data File: Yes, Even Before Data Collection

Setting Up Your Data File

Importing Data

Naming and Labeling Your Variables

How to Keep Track and Remember the Details of Your Data File

Creating New Variables in Your Data File: Transformations

Calculating a Total or Mean Score

Recording Variables

Conducting Analyses With Only Part of Your Collected Data: Split File and Select Cases


6. Descriptive Statistics: Tell Me About It
Describing Nominal Data

Describing Ordinal Data

Describing Interval or Ratio Data

Describing Data With Two Samples


7. Between-Groups Designs: Celebrate Your Independence!
One IV, Two Levels

Between Groups With Two Levels of an IV

Independent-Samples t-Test With a Quasi-IV

Between Groups With More Than Two Levels of an IV

Between Groups With More Than One IV


8. Repeated-Measures Designs: Everybody Plays!
One Independent Variable With Two Levels

Expanding the Number of Levels for Your Independent Variable

Adding Another Factor: Within-Subjects Factorial Designs


9. Advanced Research Designs: Complicating Matters
Mixed Designs: One Between Variable and One Repeated-Measures Variable

A Multivariate Design: Measuring It All Including More Than One Dependent Variable in Your Design



10. Correlational Analysis: How Do I Know If That Relationship Is Real?
Correlational Analysis: Two Variables

Prediction With Two Variables: Simple Linear Regression

Prediction With Several Variables: Multiple Linear Regression


11. Chi Square: Staying on the Same Frequency
What Do You Expect?

One-Way Chi Square With More Than Two Levels

Two-Way Chi Square


12. How Many Participants Do You Need? More Power to You!
Finding Power in SPSS’s General Linear Model

Using G*Power to Find Power

Planning Sample Sizes for Your Future Research


13. Mapping Your Decisions: You Can Get There From Here
Making Basic Decisions About Your Design

Data With Distinct Groups

Interval or Ratio Data With Many Levels


14. APA Results Sections
t-Test for Independent Samples (True IV)

t-Test for Independent Samples (Pseudo-IV)

One-Way ANOVA for Independent Groups (True IV)

t-Test for Correlated Samples

One-Way ANOVA for Correlated Groups (Repeated Measures)

Factorial ANOVA for Correlated Groups (Repeated Measures)

Factorial ANOVA for Mixed Groups

Factorial ANOVA for Independent Groups

Analysis of Covariance

Pearson’s r Correlation

Pearson’s r Correlation and Simple Regression

One-Way c2

Two-Way c2

15. Frequently Asked Questions: Did I Do That?
Questions About Research Design

Questions About Analyzing Your Data

Questions About Interpreting Your Data and Presenting Your Results



An excellent practical guide for education research.

Dr Jim Nichols
School Of Education, Nyack College
December 21, 2018

Beth M. Schwartz

Beth M. Schwartz is the Provost and Professor of Psychology at Endicott College. Previously she served as Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost and Professor of Psychology at Heidelberg University, in Tiffin, Ohio. Dr. Schwartz started her career on the faculty at Randolph College (founded as Randolph-Macon Woman's College) in Lynchburg, VA, where she served for 24 years. At Randolph she was the William E. and Catherine Ehrman Thoresen ‘23 Professor of Psychology and Assistant Dean of the College. She received a BA at Colby College (Maine) and a PhD in cognitive psychology at the State University of New York at... More About Author

Janie Hamn Wilson

Janie Wilson received her PhD in Experimental Psychology from the University of South Carolina in 1994. Since that time, she has been teaching and conducting research at Georgia Southern University. In the classroom, Dr. Wilson specializes in teaching and learning in statistics and research methods. Research interests include rapport in teaching based on empirical data on the first day of class, electronic communications, interactions with students in a traditional classroom, syllabus design, and the development and validation of the Professor-Student Rapport Scale. Recent publications include two brief texts with SAGE: An EasyGuide to... More About Author

Dennis M. Goff

Dennis M. Goff received his PhD in Experimental Psychology from Virginia Tech in 1985. He has been teaching and conducting research at Randolph College (formerly Randolph-Macon Woman’s College) since 1986. He specializes in teaching and learning in statistics and developmental psychology with a burgeoning interest in evolutionary psychology. In the past 27 years, he has mentored hundreds of senior psychology majors as they completed their independently designed research projects. In recent years, all of those seniors have presented their work at regional conferences, and a few have earned recognition for best undergraduate research... More About Author

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ISBN: 9781506385488