Master Thesis Lab

Statistics & Methods Centre - Basic statistics books

As much as possible, in the sections on statistical methods and techniques one is referred to a limited number of textbooks, in particular those that are in use in one or more institutes. Should there be books which should be included in this list please do not hesitate to ask us to include it.
Books on providing guidance for carrying out analyses with SPSS are listed at the end of this page.


Major statistics books in use at the FSW
Bryman, A. (2008). Social research methods (3rd edition). Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Bryman's book is different from many books on research methods in that it covers both quantitative and qualitative methods of social research. The emphasis is on data collection methods, practical aspects in data collection, and their underlying philosophies. It is not a book about statistical techniques, nor about data analysis for quantitative or qualitative research, even though both are mentioned. It provides clear definition of terms, methods and techniques used in research, and the book has many didactic and typographical features to help student learn the material presented.
Bryman is used in the second-year research method course in Cultural Anthopology and Development Sociology and Development Sociology and in a second-year course on qualitative research methods in the Institute for Education and Family Studies.

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Field, A. (2013). Discovering Statistics Using IBM SPSS statistics (4th edition). Londen: Sage.
Field's book covers both elementary statistics including nonparametric methods, and more advanced topics with the context of the general linear model (multiple regression, various analysis of variance models, exploratory factor analysis, and basic categorical procedures including loglinear modeling). The book contains detailed discussion of SPSS input and annotated output, so that it can be used as an all purpose book for many master theses. The book has a sort of popular (some might say student-friendly, others flippant) tone, which does not appeal to everyone. There is an extensive discussion of effect sizes, dos and don'ts, and each chapter contains information on reporting the results in a paper. The real and contrived data sets are from the 'popular' and psychological domains.
Field is used at the Department of Psychology in the Preparatory course in methods and statistics for master students with deficiencies in the area, and in the elective master course Applied data analysis.
The Department of Political Science uses Field in their first-year courses Statistics 1 and Statistics 2. Finally, also Criminology at the Faculty of Law uses Field as a textbook for their first-year and second-year students (2008).
There is also a version using the R language, which is used by Institute of Political Science.

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Meyers, L.S., Gamst, G., & Guarino, A.J. (2006). Applied multivariate research: Design and interpretation. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
Meyers et al.'s textbook is used in the second-year psychology course "Multivariate data-analyse". It deals primarily with a wide variety of submodels of the general linear models, such as regression, anova, discriminant analysis. Furthermore various aspects of component analysis and factor analysis are treated, leading to an introduction into structural equation modeling (SEM). Instructions how to carry out the analyses in SPSS with an explanation of the output. The software for SEM discussed in the book is primarily AMOS, while the faculty standard is EQS.
Meyers et al. is used at the Department of Psychology in the course Multivariate data analysis for second-year students as well as in the course on Psychometrics.

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Moore, D.S., McCabe, G.P., & Craig, B.A. (2012). Introduction to the practice of statistics (7th edition). New York: W.H. Freeman.
This is the standard textbook used to teach elementary statistics in Education and Child Studies. A solid textbook with probably as only flaw that it does not treat effect sizes. It does not refer to a specific statistical analysis package, so that the Institute uses additional materials to teach students SPSS. "This textbook sets the standard for introductory statistics books. Extremely well written with lots of examples and exercises. Used frequently in college courses..." Quoted from http://davidmlane.com/hyperstat/.

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Books with guidance on carrying out analyses with SPSS
De Vocht, A.(2013). Basishandboek SPSS 21. Utrecht, Bijleveld Press.
Students should note that the statistics in this book is inadequate. It should only be used for its SPSS content.
Field, A. (2013). Discovering Statistics Using IBM SPSS statistics (4th edition). Londen: Sage.
For details see above
Pallant, J. (2013). SPSS survival manual (5th edition). Maidenhead, UK: McGraw-Hill Education
This book is an excellent guide for SPSS analyses and also gives advice on how to report the results from analyses. It also refers students to the appropriate place for looking for the statistics behind the methods.

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