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Advanced Courses on Life Sciences

Online Course – 5th Edition

Introduction to R

September 20th-24th, 2021

This course will be delivered live online

Online live sessions on Monday from 13:00 to 16:30 and 17:30 to 20:00 (Madrid time zone) and from Tuesday to Friday from 14:00 to 16:30 and 17:30 to 20:00 (Madrid time zone). The instructor will be available for answering questions from 13:00 to 14:00 and from 20:00 to 21:00.

Course Overview

The aim of this course is to give an introduction to R addressed to people that have never used R.

By the end of the course, students will be able to:

  • Understand R syntax and navigate RStudio software sufficiently to author (or identify, evaluate, and apply) code specific to their individual research fields
  • Identify and apply code and workflow strategies that promote reproducibility, efficiency, and collaboration
  • Confidently anticipate and troubleshoot common errors and gain help from the R user community

Instruction via lecture and live-coding will be followed by exercises and multichoice questions to practice and evaluate skills.  Students will have the option to perform exercises with class data or their own data.


All participants must have a computer (Windows, Macintosh) with current versions of R and R Studio pre-installed. If you have any problem installing them, please contact the course coordinator.

Webcam and headphones are strongly recommended, as well as a good internet connection.




September 20th-24th, 2021

Schedule and Course length

Online live sessions from Monday to Friday (Madrid time zone)

• 13:00-13:50 Open office hours
• 14:00-16:30 Teaching
• Hour break
• 17:30-20:00 Teaching
• 20:00-21:00 Open office hours

Open office hours the instructor will be in zoom available to answer questions and solve problems about the offline exercises.

35 hours

This course is equivalent to 1 ECTS (European Credit Transfer System) at the Life Science Zurich Graduate School. The recognition of ECTS by other institutions depends on each university or school.




Places are limited to 16 participants and will be occupied by strict registration order.

Participants who have completed the course will receive a certificate at the end of it.

Ashton Drew instructor for Transmitting Science

Dr. Ashton Drew
KDV Decision Analysis LLC
United States of America

Soledad De Esteban-Trivigno Transmitting Science coordinator

Dr. Soledad De Esteban-Trivigno

Transmitting Science

Haris Saslis coordinator for Transmitting Science

Dr. Haris-Saslis
Transmitting Science


Orientation to RStudio software and R language

  • Manipulate basic data structures: vectors, matrices, dataframes, lists
  • Install code packages and use functions
  • Manage working directory and environment
  • Establish good coding style practices

Read and inspect data

  • Import tabular, spatial, and other data formats
  • Perform quick data inspection via summary functions
  • Perform quick data inspections via plot functions

Data management

  • Identify and handle missing values
  • Subset data by multiple methods
  • Create new variables
  • Group and summarize data
  • Join two datasets based on common ID value
  • Export data to common formats

Data visualization (ggplot2)

  • Create common graphs (scatterplot, boxplot, bar graph, time series plot)
  • Customize graph text and aesthetics
  • Export graphs to common image formats

Efficiency and reproducibility

  • Identify common strategies to manage projects in R
  • Use R Markdown to interweave code and text
  • Find and evaluate R packages and help resources
  • Write your own functions to perform common tasks


  • Course Fee
  • Early bird (until August 31st, 2021):
  • 430 €
    (344 € for Ambassador Institutions)
  • Regular (after August 31st, 2021):
  • 485 €
    (388 € for Ambassador Institutions)
  • The price is VAT included.
    After registration you will receive confirmation of your acceptance in the course. Payment is not required during registration.

You can check the list of Ambassador Institutions. If you want your institution to become a Transmitting Science Ambassador please contact us at communication@transmittingscience.com


Discounts are not cumulative and apply only on the Course Fee. We offer the possibility of paying in two instalments (contact courses@transmittingscience.com).

Former participants will have a 5 % discount on the Course Fee.

20 % discount on the Course Fee is offered for members of some organizations (Ambassador Institutions). If you want to apply to this discount please indicate it in the Registration form (proof will be asked later).

Unemployed scientists living in Spain may benefit from a 40 % discount on the Course Fee. If you would like to enquire about this discount, please contact the course coordinator. That would apply for a maximum of 2 places and they will be covered by strict registration order.


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