Once a file containing the raw data has been established, the user may wish to transform the data in certain ways. Thus the coding system originally used for a variable may be inappropriate for certain types of analysis. For example, if a variable age has been coded in terms of years it will not be possible to directly compare a young group with a middle-aged or old group. With a RECODE command, however, the data in the active file can be transformed so that age (in years) is recoded into, say, ‘young’ — up to 25 years; ‘middle’ — 26 to 50 years; and ‘old’ — over 50 years. Such a re-coding would produce three age groups rather the original groupings (one for each separate age).
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