I have manuals for Versions SPSSX2, Windows6, 7, 8, 9, and 12. Norusis' name seems to disappear after Version 6 and the text and the examples appear to get more procedure-detailed as you move to the later manuals, reflecting the addition of more options. However, I do find that the examples given is the V6 manual (for example, the factor analysis chapter) are more output-related and better explained. They do seem to have shortened the manuals by removing stuff that you can find in a stats book. Said in a different way, the later manuals explain what the procedures and options do, but the earlier books were better at explaining what the output really means.
It certainly seems that the manuals have been diluted a bit. You can't learn statistics from them. I bet Marija still works extensively with the documentation, but that early 'touch' that made them so valuable to students learning both SPSS AND statistics at the same time is gone. We miss you Marija!
Mark A. Davenport Ph.D.
Office of Student Affairs Research and Evaluation
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro
149 Mossman Bldg.
Greensboro, NC 27402-6170
'An approximate answer to the right problem is worth a good deal more than an exact
answer to an approximate problem' -- J. W. Tukey
>>> "Caldwell, Gregory" <email@example.com> 5/13/2004 11:32:53 AM >>>
hello mr joe burleson,
i found your response curious and interesting.
why release 5, as opposed to any of the others?
did the narrative content of release 5 manuals that you highly praise and
recommend to the questioner as examples of a more thorough, deeper treatment
of procedures and analysis morph into the 'guide to data anlysis' and now
the rel 12 'statistical procedures companion'?
i happened to come across a copy of the SPSS X manual from '83 (or '86
possibly, can't remember) and found the narrative more reflective and
thorough, and a striking contrast to the stark, minimalist tech approach
used in the current spss manuals i've seen, those being rel 11, and 12, and
the syntax guides, rel 12.
any other thoughts you'd like to share with us would be appreciated.
ps i use both spss and stata in my work. i find the writing and content
style and approach between the two sets of manuals a sharp contrast.
the city of new york
From: SPSSX(r) Discussion [mailto:SPSSX-L@LISTSERV.UGA.EDU]On Behalf Of
Sent: Wednesday, May 12, 2004 5:09 PM
Subject: statistics books
I would like to recommend the classic, and I think beautifully written,
SPSS statistics manuals, written by our listserve colleague, Marija J.
Norusis, a decade ago. I still refer to the SPSS Release 5 manuals.
Although they are probably out of print, there must be many floating
around. I am not planning to give mine up anytime soon.