A short overview of the grammar of graphics

One of the things I’ve had most trouble explaining to folks learning R is the grammar of graphics. It’s the theoretical underpinnings of the ggplot2 package, which is used to make all sorts of graphics. In general, I try to avoid being too theoretical in my courses and workshops, but the grammar of graphics is […]

My R Journey: Alex Michel

Alex Michel recently graduated from the OHSU-PSU School of Public Health in Portland, Oregon with a Master of Public Health. She’s worked in science communication and science writing for about 10 years and hopes to continue to use R to improve public access and engagement with research. Why did you decide to learn R? I first […]

A Guide to R for Excel Users

Many of the clients I work with are coming from Excel. When I teach them R, I try to relate new information to things they are already familiar with. In that spirit, I’ve put together a short video that shows some key functions (select, mutate, filter, summarize, group_by, and arrange) from the dplyr package in […]

How teaching second graders helps me teach R

From 2005 to 2007, I was a second grade teacher at Bel Pre Elementary School in Silver Spring, Maryland. It was the hardest job I’ve ever done. But I learned so much about teaching during that time (as well as my education master’s program) that it was anything but a waste. Recently, I’ve been reflecting on ways […]

What is a Tidyverse-centric approach?

I describe my Fundamentals of R course as taking a “Tidyverse-centric approach.” If you’re new to R, you might be wondering what the heck I’m talking about. Here’s my explanation as to what the Tidyverse is and why I use it to teach R. The Tidyverse is described as: … an opinionated collection of R packages designed for data […]

Is R just for data scientists?

Take a look at most R courses and they’re pitched to aspiring data scientists. They say things like, “learn R and you can get a great job working at one of the many companies that use it to do data science.” Take a look at the bios of many of the most prominent R users and you’ll […]