This document describes a few suggestions to get you started with Stata 13.
- Using the pulldown menus: Help>PDF documentation
- From the online help for a specific command; just click on the hyperlink
Windowing and font preferences
- Stata 13 Windows are dockable. Read the getting started manual for more information on how to do this.
- Size the Review and Variables Windows, and the Results and Command Windows, to suit yourself.
- You may find that the default font for the Results Windows in Stata 13 is hard
to read and prefer to change it. Right click on the Results Windows , select Font and then set the font to your preferences
- Save your preferences with Edit>Preferences>Manage Preferences> Save Preferences/......
See the "Getting Started with Stata" manual for more details.
- Stata also comes with some preset configurations. To see these Edit>Preferences>Load Preference set
Stata is constantly adding new features and fixing any bugs. It is very easy to update your copy.
Alternatively set the automatic updates feature. Using the pull down menu Edit>Preferences>General
Preferences> and then the Internet tab, then check "Enable automatic update
checking" and then set parameters.
Checking if Stata has been successfully installed
Download Qualification tool:
Read the "Getting Started with Stata" manual for details.
Using the pulldown menus: Help>PDF documentation.
- For help on the syntax of a specific command use the
help . For example, type: help correlate.
- Search will search your Stata database for keywords.
For example, type: search correlate
will look at your database for keywords and also search the net resources.
The search responses may lead you to Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) at the
Stata web site or the Stata Technical Bulletins (STB) or to other information.
The items printed in blue are hyperlinked to
other parts of Stata or to other information.
For example, type: findit correlate
Also, you can get technical support from Stata by email. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org
and include your Stata licence number with your message.
Creating a Stata dataset from Excel
Using the pulldown memu:
Fill in the required fields and click OK
We assume you have the variable names as labels in the top row of your Excel file in lowercase.
- In Excel highlight all or part of the file that you want to convert to a
Stata datafile, including the labels in the top row.
- In Stata select the Data Editor button from the menu or just type edit.
- Select /Edit/Paste or use ctrl-V to drop the Excel file into the Stata Data
Editor. It should recognise that the top row of the Excel file contains the
labels, which now become Stata variables. Within the Editor click on the variable
name and type in a variable label.
- Then use the dialog box for Describe, or Stata commands describe
and summarize to check your data.
- If you enter a summarize command
and find that a variable has 0 cases it usually means that Stata regards it
as a string variable. The easiest way to convert a string variable to numeric
is to use the destring command.
- For more help on inputting Excel files see
Creating a Stata dataset from other file formats
- Method 1: Use Stat/Transfer.
- Method 2: Save the data in another format; as an Excel file and import it
Running a Stata session
- If you want to save the results of your session, set up a log file. The
Stata default is a SMCL file (Stata Markup and Control Language). You may
prefer to use an ASCII text file. For example, type: log
using fred01.txt, text. At the end of your session close the log
file with: log close.
- You can also open a command file to keep track of all commands you issue
during a session, which you could later edit into a do
file. The command cmdlog using temp01
produces an ASCII text file temp01.txt.
At the end of your session you close the command log file with: cmdlog
close. But if you forget it will save the log file and close automatically.
- A message at the bottom of the Results Window shows if you have log or command
log files open.
- You can also save the list of commands you used during the session by going
to the icon in the Review Window and selecting Save Review Contents. This produces
a Stata do file that is an ASCII file
you can edit with any text editor.
Copying Stata results to Word or Excel
The Results Window is scrollable although it only keeps about five screens of
results. If you want to copy some of the results to Word or Excel, highlight
them and select /Edit/Copy Table (Shift-Ctrl-C).
- When you drop your selection into Excel it is in columns (except where the
Stata output is a bit complicated as in anova results).
- If you drop your selection into Word you have the Stata columns separated
by tabs. You could then use Word menu /Table/Convert Text to Table, and perhaps
use /Table/Table AutoFormat to format your table.
- You can also copy a graph with right click and then Copy or Ctrl-C. When
you drop it into Word use menu /Edit/Paste Special. Select Picture but do
not select Float over text.
There are also some excellent user written programs that make to easy to get results in Word and Excel eg. estout
Training via the Internet
- Stata runs interactive web-based courses including an introduction to Stata,
programming in Stata, and time series using Stata. For information about
the dates and costs for these courses see: http://www.stata.com/netcourse/.
- A comprehensive set of free Stata training materials is available from UCLA
Our bookshop has several publications to assist
in learning Stata data management and analyses. There are many books on sale
at special prices.
We add a new tip to our web site at the beginning of each month. For previous
tips go to our page on Tips for using Stata.