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Structural Equation Modeling: Part 1 - Online Course

A 4-Week On-Demand Seminar Taught by

Paul Allison
Course Dates: Ask about upcoming dates

Each Monday you will receive an email with instructions for the following week.

All course materials are available 24 hours a day. Materials will be accessible for an additional 2 weeks after the official close on July 15.

Watch Sample Video

This seminar is Part 1 of a two-part sequence on SEM. Part 2 covers more advanced SEM topics, like instrumental variables, alternative estimation methods, multiple group models, models for binary and ordinal data, and models for longitudinal data. Part 2 will be offered July 29-August 26.

For the last several years, Dr. Paul Allison has been teaching his acclaimed short seminars on Structural Equation Modeling to audiences around the world. This seminar covers structural equation modeling (SEM) basics. It is is an introductory course, and no previous knowledge of SEM is presumed.

The course takes place in a series of four weekly installments of videos, quizzes, readings, and assignments, and requires about 6-8 hours/week. You can participate at your own convenience; there are no set times when you are required to be online. The course can be accessed with any recent web browser on almost any platform, including iPhone, iPad, and Android devices. It consists of 12 modules:

  1. Introduction and linear regression
  2. FIML for missing data, path analysis
  3. Direct and indirect effects
  4. Indirect effects
  5. Bootstrapping and partial correlations
  6. Latent variable models and classical test theory
  7. Parallel, tau-equivalent and congeneric measures
  8. Confirmatory factor analysis
  9. Maximum likelihood estimation
  10. Goodness of fit
  11. Modification indices, correlated errors, the general structural equation model
  12. Concluding thoughts and advice

The modules contain videos of the 4-day livestream version of the course in its entirety. Each module is followed by a short multiple-choice quiz to test your knowledge. There are also weekly exercises that ask you to apply what you’ve learned to a real data set.

Each week, there are 2-3 assigned articles to read. There is also an online discussion forum where you can post questions or comments about any aspect of the course. All questions will be promptly answered by Dr. Allison.

Downloadable course materials include the following PDF files:

  • All slides displayed in the videos.
  • Exercises for each week.
  • Readings for each week.
  • Computer code for all exercises (in Mplus, SAS, Stata, and R formats).
  • A certificate of completion.

More details about course content


Who should register?

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“The quality of teaching was excellent."

“The quality of teaching was excellent. Paul is a very good teacher. By going from simple to complex topics, Paul made it easy to follow. His explanations are always very clear and simple. Provided exercises are a great way to apply the new knowledge.”

Gustav Bosehans

Newcastle University

“I appreciated Paul's calm manner and narrative when combining code with his own judgement and experience."

“I appreciated Paul’s calm manner and narrative when combining code with his own judgement and experience. Many stats teachers are afraid to say openly just how much judgement and experience weigh in on choices (rather than purely numeric criteria) and that is very consistent with my own 20+ year practice of applied statistics.”

Terry Murphy

Pennsylvania State University

“The lectures had a lot of detail..."

“The lectures had a lot of detail, so it was nice going at my own pace. I liked that I was able to access the lectures for an additional two weeks since it allowed me to go back and review the content.”

Alex Esquivel

Leidos/Naval Health Research Center

"Paul Allison is a fantastic instructor."

“Paul Allison is a fantastic instructor. He made the course easy to follow with clear and step by step presentation. The pace is perfect for me. I like the best his insightful remarks on assumptions, qualification, appropriateness and interpretation of statistical output.”

Christine Lai

Vanderbilt University Medical Center

“...understandable and relatable to many disciplines..."

“I appreciated the numerous examples that made the content understandable and relatable to many disciplines. Having the discussion forum was a great option for questions and increased my engagement with the content.”

Gretchen Swabe

University of Pittsburgh

"Dr. Allison explains the material very clearly."

“Dr. Allison explains the material very clearly. Showing how to implement the statistical techniques in all of the most popular software packages greatly improves the student’s ability to translate the material to their own work. He also is very diligent about replying to all our questions. The office hour section, where he works through the week’s assignment, is my favorite part.”

Michael Foley

Washington State Department of Labor and Industries

“I enjoyed the detailed attention to several psychometric aspects of CFA modeling.”

“I enjoyed the detailed attention to several psychometric aspects of CFA modeling.”

Vijayan K Pillai

University of Texas at Arlington