The demand for skilled data science practitioners in industry, academia, and government is rapidly growing. The HarvardX Data Science Series prepares you with the necessary knowledge base and skills to tackle real-world data analysis challenges. The series covers concepts such as probability, inference, regression and machine learning and helps you develop a skill set that includes R programming, data wrangling with dplyr, data visualization with ggplot2, file organization with UNIX/Linux, version control with git and GitHub, and reproducible document preparation with RStudio. In the R Basics course, we learn the basic building blocks of R. As done in all our courses, we use motivating case studies, we ask specific questions, and learn by answering these through data analysis. Our assessments use code checking technology that will permit you to get hands-on practice during the courses.
Throughout the series, we will be using the R software environment. You will learn R, statistical concepts, and data analysis techniques simultaneously. In this course, we will introduce the necessary basic R syntax to get you going. However, rather than cover every R skill you need, we introduce just enough so you can continue learning in the next courses, which will provide more in depth coverage. We believe that you can better retain R knowledge when you learn it to solve a specific problem. The motivating question in this course relates to crime in the United States and we provide a relevant dataset. You will learn some basic R skills to permit us to answer specific questions about differences across the different states.
HarvardX has partnered with DataCamp for all assignments. This allows students to program directly in a browser-based interface. You will not need to download any special software, but an up-to-date browser is recommended.
MOOCs stand for Massive Open Online Courses. These arefree online courses from universities around the world (eg. StanfordHarvardMIT) offered to anyone with an internet connection.
How do I register?
To register for a course, click on "Go to Class" button on the course page. This will take you to the providers website where you can register for the course.
How do these MOOCs or free online courses work?
MOOCs are designed for an online audience, teaching primarily through short (5-20 min.) pre recorded video lectures, that you watch on weekly schedule when convenient for you. They also have student discussion forums, homework/assignments, and online quizzes or exams.
I found it to be an engaging introduction to R. In it base functions and some verbs of the popular R package dplyr were taught. Practice exercises were done in the Datacamp console which I appreciated, especially since I am already familiar with it. The professor was clear and the lessons were well paced. I am looking forward to the rest of the courses in this series.