There are 4 main windows in SPSS and we thought it would be useful to introduce you to what the 4 windows in SPSS are and what each is used for:

1. Data View - The data view is used to store and show your data. It is much like an ordinary spreadsheet although in general the data is structured so that rows are cases and the columns are for the different variables that relate to each case.

2. Variable View - The variable view contains the variables on your data set, so it defines the properties of your dataset. Each row will define all of the various variables for one set of data. For example, for a numerical piece of data this would show (amongst other things) the number of decimal places that are stored for that piece of data.

The variables include - name, type, width, decimals, label, values, missing, columns, align and measure. Ensuring that the 'measure' of your variables is correct is vital. The variable can be Nominal which is for strings of data, Ordinal for data that isn't continuous but can be ranked or ordered or, finally, scale which is used for a variable that is continuous, for example a distance to somewhere.

3. Output Viewer Window - This window is used to show the results that have been output from your data analysis. Depending on the analysis that you are carrying out this may include the Chart Editor Window or Pivot Table Window.

4. Syntax Editor Window - This window shows the underlying commands that have executed your data analysis. If you are a confident coder this is where you can amend the code, or write your own from scratch, and then run your own custom analysis on your data set.

So there you have it, a whistle stop tour of the 4 main windows that you will find in SPSS.

1. Data View - The data view is used to store and show your data. It is much like an ordinary spreadsheet although in general the data is structured so that rows are cases and the columns are for the different variables that relate to each case.

2. Variable View - The variable view contains the variables on your data set, so it defines the properties of your dataset. Each row will define all of the various variables for one set of data. For example, for a numerical piece of data this would show (amongst other things) the number of decimal places that are stored for that piece of data.

The variables include - name, type, width, decimals, label, values, missing, columns, align and measure. Ensuring that the 'measure' of your variables is correct is vital. The variable can be Nominal which is for strings of data, Ordinal for data that isn't continuous but can be ranked or ordered or, finally, scale which is used for a variable that is continuous, for example a distance to somewhere.

3. Output Viewer Window - This window is used to show the results that have been output from your data analysis. Depending on the analysis that you are carrying out this may include the Chart Editor Window or Pivot Table Window.

4. Syntax Editor Window - This window shows the underlying commands that have executed your data analysis. If you are a confident coder this is where you can amend the code, or write your own from scratch, and then run your own custom analysis on your data set.

So there you have it, a whistle stop tour of the 4 main windows that you will find in SPSS.