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It is always useful to have a book at hand for each data set that might be used so that the variable labels, value labels, missing values, and acceptable ranges are easily determined. Everything important piece of information for each variable is listed by simply creating a CODE BOOK using SPSS. This should be made after the variables have been cleaned and defined as seen fit.


Follow these steps to create a code book:

1.  Open SPSS.

2.  Do NOT open the data file for which the code book will be made, it must be closed for the processing to occur.

3.  Click on File, Display data info and under the Panda datasets folder and choose the data set of interest. For example, try SAsia.sav (because it is short and manageable).

4.  Click on Open.

The output screen will look something like the following. The output is editable, and it is quite a good idea to select all of the output and decrease the font size for reduced printing space (fewer pages). The following section of information will be the first output that will show, followed by the information on the variables. This portion of the output gives the data source, number of cases, and conditions of the data.

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The section that will follow this is the Variable information. This is what is of interest for a code book.

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The rest of the information continues, for all of the variables in the data set. The output is easily printed from the File, Print menu.  Keep this code book nearby when analysis is run, to check the types of variables,the coding assignments and the missing variables.

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