Helpful hints on using the DAS/SDA recode program

The DAS/SDA recode program contains detailed instructions, including examples, on how to use the program to recode a variable.

We suggest that you always recode a variable by creating a new variable. The first dialog box in the recode program provides that option. By following this procedure, you will preserve the original variable. If you decide that you want to recode the variable in a different manner, you will need the original variable.

Your new, recoded variable will be saved for a period of time, so that you can access it during later sessions without having to repeat the recoding procedure. However, your recoded variables will be saved along with the recoded variables of all other users of this dataset. You can view the list of all these user-created variables by requesting the list from the main DAS/SDA page. To easily find your recoded variables, we suggest that you begin the name of each recoded variable with some word or letters that will allow you to easily locate the variable in an alphabetical list.

Example: A user with the last name of "Lark" might name his recoded variables as Lark01, Lark02, Lark03, etc. On subsequent sessions, he could easily find all of his recoded variables. Of course Mr. Lark would have to keep notes so that he could remember what variables Lark01, Lark02, etc., referred to. Naturally, you do not have to use your last name. Any word or set of letters would do. In fact, someone with a common last name probably should not use that name, as other users might do so. The important principle is to use a word that will allow you to easily identify your recoded variables in a large list of variables.