Many of my colleagues are considering using the M-PLUS package to carry out Hierarchical Linear Modeling, rather than the HLM 7 package. Both packages are designed by very well respected figures in the field of Hierachical Linear Modeling. Have any users seen distinct statistical advantages in using one package or the other?
I would have to agree with the previous post, R is a good alternative to these. I've used both HLM and M-PLUS and find that data manipulation is difficult to impossible, and the scripting language of R is much better for actually using the results from the models. my 2 cents.