Variable View

Variable View contains descriptions of the attributes of each variable in the data file. In Variable View:

  • Rows are variables.
  • Columns are variable attributes.

You can add or delete variables and modify attributes of variables, including the following attributes:

  • Variable name
  • Data type
  • Number of digits or characters
  • Number of decimal places
  • Descriptive variable and value labels
  • User-defined missing values
  • Column width
  • Measurement level

All of these attributes are saved when you save the data file.

In addition to defining variable properties in Variable View, there are two other methods for defining variable properties:

  • The Copy Data Properties Wizard provides the ability to use an external IBM® SPSS® Statistics data file or another dataset that is available in the current session as a template for defining file and variable properties in the active dataset. You can also use variables in the active dataset as templates for other variables in the active dataset. Copy Data Properties is available on the Data menu in the Data Editor window. See the topic Copying Data Properties for more information.
  • Define Variable Properties (also available on the Data menu in the Data Editor window) scans your data and lists all unique data values for any selected variables, identifies unlabeled values, and provides an auto-label feature. This method is particularly useful for categorical variables that use numeric codes to represent categories--for example, 0 = Male, 1 = Female. See the topic Defining Variable Properties for more information.