R Open Labs this Spring in the DSSC

By WOCinTech Chat [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Flickr
By WOCinTech Chat [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Flickr

10am – 12pm
Every Wednesday
Digital Social Science Center

Stop by any Wednesday this Spring for R Open Labs. We start off every Open Lab with a 10 minute exploration of an R package or dataset; the rest of the time is yours to work on homework, research or building your coding skills in good company.

This Spring we’ll be digging into:

  • dplyr
  • ggplot2
  • Shiny
  • mySQL
  • your choice!

Beginners welcome!  We want to hear from you which datasets and packages you want to learn.

What is R?

R is an open source statistical programming language, useful for exploring many types of data and for conducting advanced analyses.

By HYanWong (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
By HYanWong (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

What can I do with R?

You can use R to conduct quantitative research in political science, sociology, economics or any other social science discipline, using data available from government sources or Columbia University Libraries. With a little practice, you will be able to explore and visualize trends in your data, examine relationships between different variables, and determine the significance of your findings. Advanced users can use R to write functions to examine large sets of data, make predictions and find relationships between different data sets and sources.

Why Open Labs?

R was created for and by a community of users. Sure, you can learn on your own or in a formal classroom setting, but we think it’s more fun to set aside some time to explore and play — hopefully before the end of the semester when you’re cramming for that exam! Let us know if there’s a topic or package you want to explore at a future R Open Lab.

Who Leads Open Labs?

Julia Marden is a Research Support & Data Services Librarian, based in Lehman Library and the Journalism Library. Prior to joining Columbia, she organized hackathons and Meetups for DataKind. Right now, she’s exploring Shiny and loves how intuitively it blends R with aspects of web design.

Chubing Tripepi is a Research Support & Data Services Librarian in the Watson Library of Business and Economics. With considerable experience in working with students, she can assist in finding, manipulating, and analyzing data in R. Lately she has been playing with exploratory data analysis and programming with R.

Ellie Ransom is the Research Services Coordinator based in the Science & Engineering Library in the Northwest Corner Building. With a Masters in Applied Math & Statistics, Ellie has an understanding of what students might be using R for and how to help them work out their logic issues. (And there are always logic issues! )

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