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IN PERSON – 5-day Statistics Short Course

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Seminar Overview:

An introductory 5-day training course on using Mplus for SEM.

More and more researchers in the social and behavioral sciences use, or want to use, Mplus to analyze their structural equation models. This Stats Camp course is a 5-day hands on workshop using Mplus.

Seminar Topics:

The five-day training institute on SEM with Mplus will enable participants to:

  • Brief review of SEM
  • Preparing and reading data into Mplus
  • Model specification and dealing with defaults
  • Procedures for fitting and testing SEM models (regression, path analysis, multiple groups, moderation ) in Mplus
  • Testing mediation (bootstrapping)
  • How to fit longitudinal models (Panel vs Growth curve models)

Note: This course will focus primarily on multivariate normal data that meets the assumptions of maximum likelihood estimation although other estimators available in Mplus will be briefly discussed.

Seminar Description:

The course starts with a brief review of structural equation modeling with emphasis on the specific way Mplus is used to specify and estimate models. We will also discuss some ways to deal with warnings and error messages. Next, we work with model specification and comparisons, multigroup models, DIF testing, moderation, and how to deal with Mplus defaults. We continue with testing predictive hypotheses and mean differences. Then, we will cover more advanced topics related to longitudinal data along with its additional assumptions and how to fit longitudinal SEM models in Mplus (e.g. how to specify longitudinal panel models, growth curve models, and how to test for mediation). The last day provides time for an additional topic based on camper requests (i.e. MLM, Power Analysis, etc.). The available choices of different estimation methods and statistical tests are also discussed.

On each day, the morning session consists of mini-lectures and examples, and the afternoon session is a computer lab where the topics of the morning are applied on example data. There will also be time to work on your own data and get feedback on your models. Bringing your own data is a plus for you, but definitely not a requirement for this course as we will have plenty of examples.

Participants from a variety of fields—including psychology, education, human development, public health, prevention science, sociology, marketing, business, biology, medicine, political science, and communication—will benefit from the course.

On the first day of class you will receive an electronic copy of all course materials, including lecture slides, practice datasets, software scripts, relevant supporting documentation, and recommended readings. You will also have access to a video recording of the course.

Instructor: Elizabeth Grandfield, Ph.D.

Elizabeth received her Ph.D. in Quantitative Psychology at the University of Kansas. She is currently an Assistant Professor in the Department of Methodology and Statistics at Utrecht University in the Netherlands. Her research focuses on evaluating measurement invariance with an emphasis in longitudinal designs. In areas of applied research, Elizabeth has been involved in longitudinal children studies at Juniper Gardens as well as a national nursing study at Kansas University Medical Center, both in Kansas City. She also received the 2011 Multivariate Software Award, presented by Peter Bentler and Eric Wu. Elizabeth has been involved in Stats Camp since 2012.

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APA Continuing Education Credits:

This course offers ? hours of Continuing Education Credits. Stats Camp Foundation is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. Stats Camp Foundation maintains responsibility for this program and its content.

Seminar Includes:

Materials, downloads, recorded course video viewable for up to one year.

Learning Objectives:

After engaging in course lectures and discussions as well as completing the hands-on practice activities, participants will:

  • Acquire an understanding of how Mplus syntax is structured and used to analyze structural equation models.
  • Evaluate and respond to common error messages generated by Mplus.
  • Set the scale in an SEM or CFA model in Mplus by overriding the program defaults for marker variable, fixed factor, and effects coding scaling methods.
  • Prepare data for input into Mplus.
  • Fit CFA models using Mplus.
  • Conduct model comparisons and invariance testing using Mplus.
  • Evaluate structural invariance in predictive models.
  • Evaluate panel models and growth curve models using Mplus.
  • Implement longitudinal designs, mediation, and bootstrapping in Mplus.

Seminar Prerequisites:

Required:

  • Intermediate proficiency in multiple linear regression (e.g., a second course in statistics is usually sufficient).
  • Intermediate proficiency with at least one statistical software package (e.g., SPSS, Stata, SAS, R, etc.).
  • At least limited experience (or basic awareness) with continuous latent variable models, e.g., exploratory and confirmatory factor analysis (EFA; CFA) and structural equation modeling (SEM).
  • Please email the instructor if you have any questions or concerns. Some introductory literature/articles can be recommended/provided before the course begins.

Not required but advantageous:

  • At least limited experience with multivariate data analysis.

No level of proficiency beyond basic awareness is assumed for skills related to:

  • Latent variable modeling using Mplus.
  • Advanced mathematical or statistical topics such as matrix algebra or likelihood theory.

Software and Computer Support:

Participants need to bring a laptop computer with Wi-Fi capabilities.

All statistical software used at Stats Camp will be available, free to participants, on our SMORS (statistical modeling on remote servers) system for the duration of camp.

Instruction will be provided for the methods using the most current version of Mplus (base program with mixture add-on or base program with combination add-on). Mplus is available for Windows, Mac, and Linux environments.  Information for purchasing a personal license can be found at www.statmodel.com.

Seminar Audience:

If you need to analyze your data in Mplus or if you want to know when to switch to Mplus, this seminar is for you. You should have some (basic) experience with other SEM software, for example AMOS, LISREL, openMX, SAS. No previous knowledge of Mplus is assumed. You do not need to know matrix algebra, calculus, or likelihood theory, or any knowledge on Bayesian statistics. Participants from a variety of fields, including sociology, psychology, education, human development, marketing, business, biology, medicine, political science, and communication, will benefit from the seminar.

Seminar Files

Instructor will provide password on first day of seminar.

All statistical software used at Stats Camp will be available, free to participants, on our SMORS (statistical modeling on remote servers) system for the duration of camp.

Monday June 12, 2023
9:00-9:30 Welcome and introductions
9:30-10:45 SEM: Brief Review
10:45-11:00 Rest Break
11:00-12:30 Intro to Mplus syntax and common error messages
12:30-1:30 Rest Break
1:30-3:00 Scale setting in CFA/SEM (overriding Mplus defaults)
3:00-3:15 Rest Break
3:15-5:00 Computer exercises and getting your data ready for Mplus
Tuesday June 13, 2023
9:00-10:45 Q&A, Fitting CFA models, Model comparisons
10:45-11:00 Rest Break
11:00-12:30 Intro to Invariance testing (Multiple group models and moderation)
12:30-1:30 Rest Break
1:30-3:00 Mplus examples
3:00-3:15 Rest Break
3:15-5:00 Computer exercises
Wednesday June 16, 2023
9:00-10:45 Q&A and catch up
10:45-11:00 Rest Break
11:00-12:30 Structural Invariance, predictive models
12:30-1:30 Rest Break
1:30-3:00 Mplus examples, exercises
3:00-3:15 Rest Break
3:15-5:00 Computer exercises and camper hypothesized models
Thursday June 15, 2023
9:00-10:45 Q&A and catch up, longitudinal SEM
10:45-11:00 Rest Break
11:00-12:30 Panel vs growth curve model specification in Mplus
12:30-1:30 Rest Break
1:30-3:00 More on longitudinal, mediation, bootstrapping in Mplus
3:00-3:15 Rest Break
3:15-5:00 Computer exercises and working with your own data
Friday June 16, 2023
9:00-10:45 Q&A and catch up
10:45-11:00 Rest Break
11:00-12:30 Misc topic (based on camper response to survey)
12:30-1:30 Rest Break
1:30 ~ 3:00 One-on-one consultations with instructor

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