Red X iconGreen tick iconYellow tick icon

Friday 16 February 2024

Introduction to R will cover the use of the open source programming language R (and RStudio) for data manipulation, simple data analysis, and graphing. This version of the course uses Tidyverse functions to illustrate data manipulation and graphing with dplyr and ggplot2. All practical exercises are illustrated using data from health sciences studies.

Register now

Public Health Summer School Banner 2024

Topics covered

  • R basics and RStudio
  • Data importing, organising and manipulating (with Tidyverse)
  • Exploratory data analysis and simple regression models
  • Graphics and data visualisation (with ggplotw)

Style of course

Computer lab – hands-on course combining taught overview, hints on programming practices, and practical exercises. Course attendance is limited to 18 participants.

Who should attend?

The course is intended for individuals who would like to become more comfortable with the R environment for research/study purposes. Basic knowledge of biostatistics is required for the course (e.g. confidence intervals, hypothesis testing) as the focus is on R rather than statistics. Some brief experience in R or another statistics package using programming commands (e.g. Stata, SAS) may be useful but is not presumed. The practicals will be completed using Windows but the material also applies to people running R on a Mac or Linux system.

Draft timetable

8.30am Registration and Coffee  
9:.00am R & RStudio orientation and getting started James Stanley
10:30am Morning break 
11am Data management James Stanley
12:30pm Lunch break 
1:15pm Statistical analyses and ouput James Stanley
3pm Afternoon break James Stanley
3:30pm Graphs with ggplot2 Ellie Johnson
4:50pm Summary of course and evaluation James Stanley
5pm Finish  

Teaching staff

  • Dr James Stanley is a Research Associate Professor and consulting biostatistician at the University of Otago, Wellington. He started using R in 2009 to draw nicer graphs than he could draw elsewhere, and now uses it for nicer everything-else-analysis.
  • Ellie Johnson is an Assistant Research Fellow at the University of Otago, Wellington and has been using R for nearly a decade. She is passionate about the seemingly endless applications of R to research and making beautiful graphics.


This course will be held in-person at the Wellington campus of University of Otago in Mein Street, Newtown (next to Wellington Regional Hospital). Specific directions to the course reception/room will be sent the week before the course start.

Course cost and registration

NZD$375 early bird, NZD$500 after Wednesday 20 December 2023.

A 50% discount is available to full-time students, those unwaged and University of Otago staff.

Register now

For more information please contact the course convenor

Contact name
James Stanley
Back to top