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An IBM® SPSS® Companion to Political Analysis

An IBM® SPSS® Companion to Political Analysis

Sixth Edition

August 2019 | 304 pages | CQ Press
“[The text] provides by far the best introduction for students wanting to learn how to use SPSS in conducting statistical analysis. Its clear in-depth examples makes data analysis accessible to even the most numbers-phobic student.” 
—Michael Burch, Eckerd College

In Pollock's trusted IBM SPSS® workbook, students dive headfirst into actual political data and work with a software tool that prepares them not only for future political science research, but the job world as well. Students learn by doing with new guided examples, annotated screenshots, step-by-step instructions, and exercises that reflect current scholarly debates in American political behavior and comparative politics. This Sixth Edition of An IBM SPSS® Companion to Political Analysis features thoroughly revised and updated datasets and is compatible with all post-12 releases of SPSS.

Discounted package deals available with the IBM® SPSS® Statistics Base Integrated Student Edition and Philip H. Pollock’s Essentials of Political Analysis. See more information on the “Packages” tab or contact your CQ Press | SAGE sales rep.

Give your students the SAGE edge!

SAGE edge offers a robust online environment featuring an impressive array of free tools and resources for review, study, and further exploration, keeping both instructors and students on the cutting edge of teaching and learning. Learn more at

Getting Started
Downloading the Datasets

SPSS Full and Grad Pack Versions: What Is the Difference?

Watch Screencasts from SAGE Edge

Chapter 1. Introduction to SPSS
The Data Editor

Setting Options for Variable Lists

The Viewer

Selecting, Printing, and Saving Output

How to Format an SPSS Table

Saving Commands in Syntax Files

Getting Help

Chapter 1 Exercises

Chapter 2. Descriptive Statistics
How SPSS Stores Information about Variables

Interpreting Measures of Central Tendency and Variation

Describing Nominal Variables

Describing Ordinal Variables

Using the Chart Editor to Modify Graphics

Describing Interval Variables

Obtaining Case-level Information with Case Summaries

Chapter 2 Exercises

Chapter 3: Transforming Variables
Creating Indicator Variables

Working with Variable Labels

Recoding Interval-level Variables into Simplified Categories

Simplifying an Internal-level Variable with Visual Binning

Centering or Standardizing a Numeric Variable

Using Compute to Create an Additive Index

Chapter 3 Exercises

Chapter 4. Making Comparisons
Cross-tabulation Analysis

Visualizing Cross-tabulation Analysis with a Bar Chart

Mean Comparison Analysis

Visualizing Mean Comparison Analysis with a Line Chart

Creating a Box Plot to Make Comparisons

Chapter 4 Exercises

Chapter 5. Making Controlled Comparisons
Cross-tabulation Analysis with a Control Variable

Graphing Controlled Comparisons with Categorical Dependent Variables

Mean Comparison Analysis with a Control Variable

Visualizing Controlled Mean Comparisons

Chapter 5 Exercises

Chapter 6. Making Inferences about Sample Means
Finding the 95% Confidence Interval of a Sample Mean

Testing a Hypothetical Claim about the Population Mean

Inferences about the Difference between Two Sample Means

Visualizing Mean Comparisons with Error Bars

Making Inferences about Sample Proportions

Chapter 6 Exercises

Chapter 7: Chi-square and Measures of Association
Analyzing an Ordinal-level Relationship

Analyzing an Ordinal-level Relationship with a Control Variable

Analyzing a Nominal-level Relationship

Analyzing a Nominal-level Relationship with a Control Variable

Chapter 7 Exercises

Chapter 8. Correlation and Linear Regression
Correlation Analysis

Bivariate Regression

Creating Scatterplots for Bivariate Regression Analysis

Multiple Regression

Visualizing Multiple Regression Analysis with Bubble Plots

Chapter 8 Exercises

Chapter 9. Dummy Variables and Interaction Effects
Regression with Multiple Dummy Variables

Interaction Effects in Multiple Regression

Graphing Linear Prediction Lines for Interaction Relationships

Chapter 9 Exercises

Chapter 10. Logistic Regression
Thinking about Odds, Logged Odds, and Probabilities

Estimating Logistic Regression Models

Logistic Regression with Multiple Independent Variables

Graphing Predicted Probabilities with One Independent Variable

Graphing Predicted Probabilities with Multiple Independent Variables

Chapter 10 Exercises

Chapter 11. Doing Your Own Political Analysis
Seven Doable Ideas

Importing Data into SPSS

Writing It Up

Chapter 11 Exercises

Appendix, Table A-1: Variables in the GSS Dataset in Alphabetical Order
Appendix, Table A-2: Variables in the NES Dataset in Alphabetical Order
Appendix, Table A-3: Variables in the States Dataset by Topic
Appendix, Table A-4: Variables in the World Dataset by Topic


Instructor Resources Site

Instructor Teaching Site (Password Protected)

SAGE edge for Instructors supports your teaching by making it easy to integrate quality content and create a rich learning environment for students. This site includes:
  • Datasets that accompany the workbook
  • Syntax files for each chapter of the workbook
  • Solutions Manual that accompanies exercises in the workbook, along with an associated syntax file
  • All tables and figures from the workbook
  • Screencast videos, created by author Philip Pollock, of the guided examples from each chapter
Student Study Site
Student Study Site (Open Access)

SAGE edge for Students provides a personalized approach to help students accomplish their coursework goals in an easy-to-use learning environment. This site includes:
  • Datasets that accompany the workbook
  • Screencast videos, created by author Philip Pollock, of the guided examples from each chapter, intended to enhance understanding of key topics

“[The text] provides by far the best introduction for students wanting to learn how to use SPSS in conducting statistical analysis. Its clear in-depth examples makes data analysis accessible to even the most numbers-phobic student.”

Michael Burch
Eckerd College

“With a focus on both the mechanics of SPSS and interpretation of data, An IBM SPSS Companion to Political Analysis provides a very useful and useable addition to a Political Science Methods course. The chapters have engaging exercises that address many areas of the discipline and are organized to build students’ understanding of statistical interpretation and skills with SPSS. Students learn to run the statistical procedures, to interpret the results, and to construct arguments with the data.”

Matthew J. Costello
Saint Xavier University

This is a very good resource

Mrs Josephine D Morris
Interdiscipline, Winchester University
December 9, 2020
Key features
  • Updated Companion datasets can be used for assignments and exercises.
  • Examples drawn from all major subfields reflect current scholarly debates American politics, political behavior, comparative politics, international relations, and law.
  • Reformatted end-of-chapter exercises allow students to tear-out and submit exercises without losing substantive chapter content. 
  • Syntax files for book and chapter exercises are now available to Instructors so they can quickly and easily replicate what's done in the book and the solutions to chapter exercises.
  • A new appendix describes Companion dataset contents—making it easier to use Companion datasets, especially for new exercises and student assignments.
  • QR codes linking to how-to tutorial videos have been added throughout the text to reinforce student learning. 



  • Multiple datasets, guided examples, screenshots, graphics instruction, and end-of-chapter exercises help students with little or no experience with SPPS to learn how to interpret and conduct political analysis
  • The chapters cover all major topics in data analysis—familiarizing students with a wide range of topics, from descriptive statistics to logistic regression.
  • The pages of this book are perforated, three-hole punched, and 8.5” x 11” in size so instructors can use end-of-chapter exercises as homework assignments that students complete and submit.
  • A two-step approach to skill-set learning—(1) Perform the guided examples. (2) Work the exercises—give students opportunities to apply their new skills and to engage students in discovering the meaning of their findings and learning to interpret them
  • Instructors can obtain a complete solution’s manual with instructor’s access to the book’s web site ( 
  • Screencasts of all of the book's guided examples, plus bonus examples not covered in the book, are available on the student study site.

Sage College Publishing

You can purchase this book and request an instructor sample on our US College site:

Go To College Site