LISA (Laboratory for Interdisciplinary Statistical Analysis) provided a series of evening short courses to help graduate students use statistics in their research. The focus of these two-hour courses was on teaching practical statistical techniques for analyzing or collecting data.

September 24, 2013
Basics of R
Instructor: Ana Maria Ortega Villa

R is a powerful, versatile, and free statistical programming language, which has become increasingly popular among industrial and academic data analysts. This introductory course covers programming basics in R, including the definition and manipulation of data objects, loops, importing/exporting data, and simple data summaries. These concepts will be illustrated using both the Home Prices Data and also the National Longitudinal Mortality Survey. The Home Prices Data is a random sample of records of resales of homes from the files maintained by the Albuquerque Board of Realtors and will be used to illustrate the basic principles listed above. The power of R will then be demonstrated by performing similar operations on the National Longitudinal Mortality Survey, which includes nearly a million records with 38 measurements each. The course format includes lecture and computer laboratory components and attendees will have the opportunity to write, modify, and execute R codes for these data.

This introductory session is part of a three course series which assumes no previous coding experience in R or any other language. The intended audience for this course includes researchers who want to gain basic exposure to R with the ultimate goal of incorporating R into their research programs. More experienced users may wish to skip this course and attend subsequent courses on statistical and graphical techniques using R.

R can be downloaded here:

RStudio can be downloaded here:

Course files are available on the course webpage (

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