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8. Feb 2021

Introduction to Statistics and R (March 5, 12, 19 and 26, 2021 |online)

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R has become a leading statistical programming language in data science and statistics. The R software is free, highly extensible, and allows to easily produce publication-quality plots. The aim of this course is to equip participants with the basic skills to effectively use the software R, embedded in the user interface RStudio. These skills will cover data import, processing and data exploration, graphical representations with ggplot2, basic concepts of statistical inference and linear regression. All topics will be demonstrated in working examples and practiced with hands on examples.

The course will be split in two parts. In the first two days we are going to teach the basic functionality of R, RStudio, and ggplot2. Day three and four are dedicated to the application of statistical tests, which will be extended to linear mixed-effects models.

Target Group

Doctoral students and Postdocs which want to become acquainted with the R language and the basics of linear regression and model selection. No previous knowledge in R or statistics will be required.

Specific Topics

Part I (March 5 and 12)

  • Introduction to R and RStudio
  • Data types (vectors, data frames, matrices, lists, factors)
  • Explorative data analysis
  • Creating functions and loops
  • Creating and customizing plots with ggplot2

Part II (March 19 and 26)

  • Recap of the principles of statistical testing
  • Linear regression models 
  • Linear mixed-effects models
  • Model evaluation and model selection


The workshop should prepare participants to read, clean, and explore their own datasets. They will become familiar with the basic workflow of statistical analyses and should become capable to conduct their own analyses, even if depending on methods that were not taught during this course. In short, this course should allow students to confidently work with the R language to apply their own analyses.


The workshop will consist of lectures, working examples and practical exercises, each covering roughly one third of the course time. Day one and two are dedicated to the handling of R, RStudio and ggplot2. After participants have acquired the basic functionality the days three and four will then be dedicated to linear regression and model selection.

Kindly note:

For students already familiar with statistics it might thus be possible to only participate in the first half of the course (Part I) whereas students who are already familiar with R might wish to participate only on day three and four (Part II).

Term and Application

  • March 5, 12, 19, 26, 2020, each day 9am – 4pm
  • Format: online
  • Group size: maximum 20.
  • Workshop-Language: English


Unfortunately, all seats are taken.


Dr. Stephan Kambach, PostDoc at the German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv) Halle-Jena-Leipzig

Christian Ristok, M.Sc. Biology, PhD student at the German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv) Halle-Jena-Leipzig and Associate Quality Senior – Training at IDT Biologika GmbH.


This workshop has been realised with financial support from Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg.

Über Philine Bernau

  • Mitarbeiter/in

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