IBM offers several student versions of its Predictive Analytics Software (PASW), formerly known as Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) software, for student use. While college computer labs may offer the expensive full versions, students can purchase less expensive versions for home use.
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SPSS for Students
IBM recommends the SPSS/PASW Student Version for students starting their studies in statistics. IBM licenses the student version for 13 months, after which the program will cease to work on a particular machine. This version allows students to run data analysis for up to 50 variables and 1,500 cases. This version retails for about £65 in 2010.
IBM also offers two versions of SPSS/PASW for graduate students with four-year licenses. The GradPack Base includes the full version of SPSS Base. The full GradPack includes the SPSS Base plus SPSS Advanced Statistics, IBM SPSS Regression and Amos software. Amos (Analysis of Moment Structures) allows students to perform structural equation modelling. These versions retail for about £130 in 2010.
Importance to Students
College students should consider learning SPSS/PASW or a similar statistical program. Many companies use SPSS to track and project trends like sales figures and polling data. Advanced academic quantitative studies also require statistical software packages to analyse data.
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