Stata can be challenging when you’re just starting. But if you are familiar with using Excel, creating macros, and analyzing data via formulas and functions, then you already have a foot in the door.
This all-purpose statistical software package is a great research tool for a diverse range of fields including sociology, economics, biomedicine, sociology, and epidemiology.
What Is Stata?
Created in 1985 by StataCorp, this all-inclusive statistical software package performs tasks that involve data management, graphics, and data analysis. You can store and manage large amounts of data using this powerful tool as well as create detailed and aesthetically pleasing graphs. Its web-based user interface neatens up a data mess into a legible and easy-to-understand format.
What Is Stata Used For?
Besides being less expensive than its predecessors SAS and SPSS, Stata allows more customization for analysis using its code and menus. A great function includes the Stata command, which allows you to search quickly for information and commands.
It’s not only a simple and efficient program, but it can run some analysis that other packages can’t. Two areas that Stata is great for include statistics and graphics. These tools are used with the following means.
- Matrix programming. Matrix is one of the programming languages that you will learn when studying Stata. Although you don’t need to know how to program to use Stata, it can help you make use of special features available for processing panel data.
- Data management. The data management features are especially advantageous for Stata users. These give you control over numerous types of data. For example, you can combine data sets, gather variables from different groups, and replicate data. You can also manage specialized data such as surveys, categories, time-series data, multiple imputation data, and more
- High-quality graphics. You can produce thousands of graphs and export them to TIFF or EPS for publication. You can even download them in PDF or PNG for the web. There is also a built-in graph editor to write notes, text, and titles. This is a great help for presentations.
- Compatibility. The cross-platform capabilities of Stata make it very accessible. Stata works on Windows, Linux/Unix, and Mac. And you can access a comprehensive list of features by discipline on its website.
Fields Which Use Stata Skills
There are dozens of different kinds of jobs that hire employees with Stata skills. We’ve included a list of some below.
Quantitative behavioral scientists use Stata extensively because of its accuracy and ease of use. Scientists use this tool while researching cognitive development, developing measurement instruments, and studying personality traits.
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It provides all the statistics, data management, and graphics tools needed to answer a broad range of behavioral science questions.
Quantitative researchers in education use Stata to study topics like a teacher’s effectiveness, learning success, development, or school finances. If you already have a master’s in higher education, working with data will help give you a different perspective in your field.
If you’re looking to study biology or become a biostatistician, Stata will be a great resource. It’s used in cancer research, HIV testing, clinical trials, public health, and observational studies. The software provides you with all the statistical tools, graphics, and data management methods needed for this scientific field.
For many who are currently studying data science, you’re likely to learn Stata. Data science is all about data visualization, collecting, analyzing, and managing information. What better tool to use? Stata has strong reproducibility, extensibility, programming capabilities, and interoperability. And it can be integrated into many workflow systems.
Some schools offer Stata as part of their curriculum. But it may be difficult to learn as a standalone subject. It all depends on how thoroughly you need to understand the program. Would you like to brush up on your skills or are you starting from scratch? Look for courses that best suit your needs.
Knowing which sector you will be working in is a good starting point. That way you can study Stata alongside your professional focus.
How Long Does It Take to Learn Stata?
All in all, there is no set time it will take to learn Stata. It depends on your method of learning, your time and effort, and how quickly you catch on.
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One path is to earn a university degree that utilizes Stata. After this, you can enroll in supplemental classes or a data science bootcamp. This should develop and refine your skills.
How to Learn Stata: Step-by-Step
The steps mentioned below will get you on the right path to learning Stata and becoming a computer scientist, data scientist, biotechnician, researcher, business analyst, actuarial scientist, or statistician.
- High school. Start with your high school subjects. Learning about basic mathematics, data, science, calculus, and physics. Make sure you understand each subject thoroughly. They will come in handy.
- Bachelor’s degree. Next, choose a major that uses statistics, data science, or machine learning.
- Online learning. Look for online courses. Spend your free time on short courses to master Stata.
- Master’s degree. Once you have received your bachelor’s degree you can head towards a master’s. These programs offer both theory and practical applications.
- Join groups. Register for online groups and forums for Stata users. Look for online Stata training that offers course notes and additional resources. You could also join a live classroom at an institute.
The Best Stata Courses and Online Training
Here we have included some of the best training and courses for you to learn Stata. Learn how Stata can help you in your career goals today.
Best In-person Stata Classes
Take advantage of hands-on learning and in-person training from these institutions.
- Provider: StataCorp LLC
- Instruction method: Classroom/online
- Length: 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m / 2 Days
- Start date: From Dec 1st – April 16th
- Cost: Varies from $950 to $ 1,295
This is a public training course offered in a classroom setting by the creators of Stata themselves. How much better can it get? They have expert instructors to teach you everything about the software including advanced statistical procedures you can apply.
Choose between classroom learning or online courses. Classroom training includes breakfast and lunch! It’s held in various locations.
Best Online Stata Courses
If you prefer online courses, then check out our list of hand-picked options.
- Provider: StataCorp
- Instruction method: Online/classroom/on-site
- Length: Varies
- Start date: Depends on the method
- Cost: Varies
StataCorp has an extensive list of online courses, on-site training, web resources, video tutorials, and more. Their training, available in multiple countries and locations, is designed by professionals in the industry.
- Provider: UCLA – Institute of Digital research & Education Statistical Consulting
- Instruction method: Online learning modules
- Length: Varies
- Cost: FREE
UCLA’s statistics department offers everything you could want to learn about Stata. They have classes, seminars, learning modulus, and a Q&A section for your hard-pressed questions.
Best Stata Books
Two great books for reference on Stata are included below. Adding these will help you to not only learn Stata but master it.
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This is a book for every Stata user whether new or experienced. The author takes you on a journey of the basics including notes to help you develop good work habits. The final chapters make it to margins, power, R-squared commands, and regression models.
This book will answer all of your Stata questions. Wondering where to start or how to analyze the data you have? And how do you report your findings? These and many other queries are discussed by the author. It’s a handy book if ever there was one.
Offered through the StataCorp website, this certification course teaches students advanced Stata programming skills. This is a one-day, eight-hour course. You’ll need to contact them for the fee.
You could also register to take a hands-on certificate course via Udemy for just $9. Here you will learn to confidently input and manage data from various sources. You’ll also learn how to create routines. It’s a must for first-time users.
Online Stata Resources
Don’t stop there, dive into these online resources to keep learning Stata.
Here you can find tons of online videos. Click that play button and transport yourself to a world of learning Stata, data science, data manipulation, reporting, visualizations, and more!
Should You Study Stata?
According to most users, Stata is not a difficult program to learn or use. In addition to all of the resources we have provided above, Stata’s core manuals are very useful.
If your job uses data then you should definitely explore this program. There’s a reason it is one of the most widely used in the world.
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