- Heidi Waite

# Learning R: Resources

Updated: May 20, 2020

Programming - that's just for computer geeks, right? Nope, biologists also program...and a lot actually! Biologists use a programming language called R to explore their data, create cool figures, and analyse their data. Programming is a scary word, but I'm here to tell you it's not impossible. If I can learn, you can too!

In this blog post, I'll share some of the resources that I used to start learning R and other resources I currently use to keep learning.

**1. Getting to know R and Rstudio***

*R is the programming language, RStudio is an Integrated Development Environment (IDE) and the interface you'll mainly use (but still requires R to be downloaded)

To download R: https://rstudio.com/products/rstudio/download/

I'd suggest you start by first learning the basics of how the programming language functions and what the interface looks like. For that, I used __Datacamp__. Datacamp has some great introductory videos and exercises. Here is also a __youtube video playlist__ with useful introductory videos. [They also have a lot of other cool videos once you are more advanced on Tidyr, __data science in R__.]

Another resource: __https://link.springer.com/book/10.1007/978-1-4614-6227-9__

**2. Start Dealing with Data **

I used two textbooks, __R Cookbook__ and __A Beginner’s Guide to R____,__ to start messing around with data. They also have some sections on getting started with R and R basics.

Some other useful __youtube videos__.

**3. Learn **__tidyverse__

Tidyr is a package in R that helps you make your data "tidy" - it helps you get your data in order. This makes it easier to create fun graphs and analyse data. I'm still learning tidyr, but it's a game changer! I'm using a book called __R for Data Science__. It assumes you have at least some basic knowledge of R programming. I also highly recommend you do the exercises in each chapter. There is also a __solutions manual__ to check your answers.

**4. Using R for Visualisation**

I've put together a few resources for data visualisation. Get ready to make some beautiful graphs and figures!

__R Tutorials - Learn ggplot2__ Youtube playlist

Most other books in the other sections above also have chapters on data visualization.

**5. Using R for Statistical Analysis**

Here I've also put some resources for learning to do stats in R.

https://www.statmethods.net/stats/index.html

http://www.cookbook-r.com/Statistical_analysis/

__Statistical Analysis and Data Display__ (in R) book

**6. Other Resources**

__Datacamp__ - lots of good videos

When in doubt: YouTube it, search it on google, or look through the online forum called __Stack Overflow__

__Understanding Statistics Using R____ __- free book download

__Regression Modeling Strategies__ - free book download

https://bookdown.org/ndphillips/YaRrr/

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And to get more practice in R, try participating in __Tidy Tuesday__. Every Tuesday, this forum shares a public dataset. Users then use their tidyr skills to make amazing figures and they share them on Twitter. It's a great way to practice all the skills you've gained.

I hope this was useful and I wish you luck!