Getting Started with SPSS for DePaul Students


You have both a video and this document to aid you in getting started with SPSS. However, please note that the first 4-5 minutes of the video that explain how to connect to SPSS are now slighly different. Therefore, please use this document to get you connected to SPSS.

That being said, you will find the remainder of the video, where I show you how to use SPSS to be helpful.

Connecting to SPSS using Remote Desktop

1.       In order to access SPSS when not in a CDM computer lab, you will need to use Remote Desktop. On Windows 10 machines, click on the Windows Icon, then scroll down to Windows Accessories.  From there, click on Remote Desktop Connection

·         Mac users should read the section below called 'Mac Users'.

·         Older versions of Windows will be slightly different. You can find usually ‘Remote Desktop Connection’ somewhere in the Control Panel. A quick web search should tell you where it is for your version of Windows.

2.       When Remote Desktop starts up, you will prompted for a computer name to connect to.  Type

3.       Remote Desktop will then ask you for a login and password.

a.       Use your Campus Connect login and password.

·         Error on Video: Please note that when the video was made, we were still using special CDM credentials. However we do NOT use these any longer. Instead, be sure to use your Campus Connect login and password.

b.       IMPORTANT: You must precede your login name with:  dpu\   For example, if your login name is ‘jcricket’, the login would be:  dpu\jcricket

4.       To start SPSS:  

a.       Click the Windows Icon

b.       Look for 'IBM SPSS Statistics'

c.       Inside that folder you should see a program called something like “IBM SPSS for Statistics 24”.  (It may not be exactly this, but it should be pretty similar).

Mac Users

Try this one first:  Macs, unfortunately, don’t play nicely with remote desktop.  At the moment, the best one (i.e. the one to try first) is called ‘Microsoft Remote Desktop’ and can be found here at the Mac App Store.  If this doesn’t work, try VLab (see below). If that also doesn't work, you can try ‘Cord’. But definitely start with the Mircosoft app or VLab.

If the ‘Microsoft Remote Desktop for Mac’ app doesn’t work, try 'VLab' which is described just below.

If VLab also doesn't work, a third option to try is:

To get going:

   1. Click Servers (top left) for the sidebar to appear.

   2. Click the plus sign (bottom right).

   3. Set the following:

            Label: your name for the remote site.

            Address: see the remote computer name litsed above.

            Login: your Campus Connect login and password

Using VLab

The university has their own remote desktop. Please try this one as well. Mac users in particular have had some success here:  Log in using Campus Connect credentials.

You may access SPSS at any location that works for you

It doesn't matter if you use SPSS at home, at a DePaul lab, at your work, at the library, etc. The only requirement is that you are able access SPSS. You do not have to access it using remote access such as Remote Desktop or the like. As long as you can access SPSS somewhere, that is perfectly fine.

Important Note on Saving Your Files

Please note that when using remote desktop, you are temporarily accessing a remote computer. As a result, any files that you save on that computer will likely be erased once you disconnect. As a result, be sure to allow saving to the local computer (i.e. the one in front of you). I am providing instructions here for how to do this on a Windows computer. The option should be there for the remote desktop program you use on Macs, but the specifics will require you to look at the settings on your own.

On PCs, when you start the remote desktop application:

1.       Click on the ‘Options’ button at the bottom and you will see additional tabs appear

2.       Click on ‘Local Resources’

3.       At the bottom, under ‘Local devices and resources’ click on ‘More’.

4.       Check the box labeled ‘Drives’. This will allow you to save files to your local computer even when you are remotely connected.

Notes on the Video

I also created a video to assist you in this process which you can find on the 'Resources' page. However, since this video was made, a couple of things have been changed. They are all in the first 4-5 minutes. They are as follows:

1.       Instead of "CDM" credentials to log in, you will use your Campus Connect credentials.

2.       Instead of preceding  your login name by 'cstcis', you must precede it with 'dpu\'

3.       When you connect to the remote machine, you will click on the Windows icon which will show a series of files and program groups. Select the program group called 'SPSS Statistics'.

The remainder of the video where I show you how to use SPSS and a data file will not have changed in any significant way.

Contacting Technical Support

Please note: I do not have the ability to check whether your CDM account is available or properly set up or anything like that. So if you are being denied access in your attempts to connect to SPSS, you must contact technical support.

Remote desktop to use SPSS is maintained by CDM. Therefore, do not use the regular technical support number for the university.

Instead, contact the CDM help desk at: