General information

Course Description

The aim of the course is to learn the basics of the SPSS for Windows program. SPSS is used on quantitative methods courses, where you’ll need
the skills learnt on this course. The course is at its most useful when taken just before the quantitative methods course of your major subject. The course participants should be familiar with ICT basics and basic statistics. Only students of the Faculty of Social Science can participate in the course.


The course consists of four two-hour group meetings, a written final report done in groups of two, a support session for the writing the report and the oral presentation of the report in the final meeting. Additionally, every report group (consisting of 2 students each) has to examine critically one final report, and present their criticism in the final meeting.

The course requires a lot of work relative to the number of credits if understanding statistical concepts is not one of your strengths. In addition to participating in the group meetings, you need to study the course materials autonomously.

  • Group meetings – The use of the SPSS program is practiced in the first four lab-session. Active participation in all of the meetings is obligatory to complete the course.
  • Final report – In addition to class attendance everyone is expected to write a final report, which is a small research project based on the course data. The methods learnt during the course will be applied in the final report. The report will be written in groups of two people after the fourth meeting of the course. There is a (obligatory) support session for report writing. The final reports will be turned in on the last meeting, when the groups will present their findings and criticisms.
  • Report deadline– The reports or their preliminary versions must be sent to the opponent-group and the instructor latest on the date indicated in the Course schedule.
  • Peer evaluation – In addition to presenting their own work, every report group serves as an opponent to one other final report in the final meeting. The quality of the peer evaluation counts as part of the course grade.

Completion and Grading

The completion of the course is worth 2 credit points. The course is graded on a scale of passed / failed. Passing grade requires a passing final report, acceptable oral report and peer evaluation, and presence at the meetings,


The exercises are based on a course material in Finnish by Mia Teräsaho.

User account

Please make sure before the beginning of the course that you have a valid standard user account. If you can log in to the computers at the faculty or faculty library, everything should be in order. For more information on user accounts see the IT department’s web pages. If you have problems with your user account, contact the user account office.

Contact persons

The teacher of the course is Ari Erti. Email ari.erti (at)
Timo Harmo should be contacted in general matters concerning ICT-studies. Email timo.harmo (at) .

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