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SPSS Statistics for Data Analysis and Visualization by Jason Verlen, Andrew Wheeler, Jon Peck, Jesus Salcedo, Keith McCormick

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Introduction

This book is a collaboration between me (Keith) and several other career-long “SPSSers,” and the editorial decisions about what to cover, and how to cover it, are greatly affected by that fact. My own career took a turn down a road that led to a life of learning, teaching, and consulting about SPSS almost 20 years ago. I was contemplating a PhD in Psychometrics at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. My plans didn’t get much further than auditing some prerequisites and establishing residency. So, on paper, I hadn’t made much progress, but moving 1000 miles (from Massachusetts) to relocate and purchasing a house represented a milestone in my life and career. I’m still in that same house (more than 22 years now), and I’m still using SPSS almost daily. Like many things in life, it seems almost accidental. I was doing contract statistics work using SPSS, working from home while I planned for a life in graduate school, and I drove up to Arlington, VA to take advantage of what SPSS training then called the training “subscription.”

The concept was to take as many classes as you can manage in a year. It was remarkably cost effective. I was able to convince my primary contract client to pay for the subscription under the condition that I covered all other expenses, and didn’t let it affect my deadlines. I already had several years of daily SPSS use under my belt, so I was hardly a rookie, but it was too good to pass up. I found a summer sublet in Washington, DC, ...

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