Quick Overview All SPSS Commands

A quick, simple and complete overview of all SPSS commands is presented in this Googlesheet, partly shown below.

Overview All SPSS Commands

For each command, our overview includes

Let's quickly walk through each of these components.

SPSS Command Types

SPSS commands come in 3 basic types:

  1. transformations are commands that are not immediately executed. Most transformations (IF, RECODE, COMPUTE, COUNT) are used for creating new variables. Transformations can be used in loops (DO REPEAT or LOOP) and/or conditionally (DO IF).
  2. procedures are commands that inspect all cases in the active dataset. Procedures are mostly used for data analysis such as running charts, tables and statistical tests. Procedures also cause transformations to be executed.
  3. other commands are neither transformations, nor procedures.
SPSS Transformations Pending

Required License

SPSS has a modular structure: you always need a base license, which you can expand with one or more licenses for additional modules.Very confusingly, modules are sometimes referred to as “options” in some documentation. Perhaps they will be referred to as “SPSS Apps” at some point in the future... The most useful modules are

You can only use features from modules for which you're licensed. If you're not sure, running show license. prints a quick overview in your output window as shown below.

SPSS Show License Output

SPSS Versions

SPSS presents a new version roughly once a year. The latest version is SPSS 27, launched in May 2020. So which commands can you (not) use if you're on an older version? Look it up straight away in our overview.Quick note: commands that were introduced before SPSS 12 have been listed as version 12. We couldn't find any older documentation and we don't expect anybody to use such ancient versions anymore. Correct me if I'm wrong... Not sure which SPSS version you're on? Just run show license. and you'll find out. Alternatively, consulting Help SPSS Menu Arrow About also tells you which patches (“Fixpacks”) you've installed as shown below.I think this latter method is available only on Windows systems. I'm not sure about that as I avoid Apple like the plague.

SPSS Find Version Number

Right. I hope you find my overview helpful. If you've any remarks or questions, please throw me a comments below.

Thanks for reading!

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