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Cathie Marsh Institute for Social Research (CMI)

R Essentials Skills

Date: 26 March 2019
Time: 1pm - 4pm
Instructor: Peter Smyth
Level: Introductory
Fee: £60 

CMI offers up to five subsidised places at a reduced rate of £60 per course day to research staff and students within Humanities at The University of Manchester. These places are awarded in order of application. 

Humanities PGR students at The University of Manchester can apply for a methods@manchester bursary to help cover their costs. All applications will be considered on a case-by-case basis and applicants will be required to provide a supporting statement from their supervisor.

Please contact Joshua Edgar (email: for a Bursary application form for any general course enquires please contact

Please note: this is not guaranteed and is considered on a case by case basis. Please contact us for more information.


This ‘Essential Skills in R’ workshop  is for any researcher who has data they want to analyse using the R programming language. No prior computational experience is required. This hands-on workshop provides an introduction to the R programming environment and demonstrates the use of the R language for performing basic data analysis.

Course objectives

On completion of this workshop, the participants will be able to;

  • Install R and RStudio on their own machine
  • Be familiar with the RStudio GUI layout
  • Understand R Variables, data types and objects
  • Understand the use of Vectors and Dataframes
  • Understand how to get help and make use of R libraries
  • Read datasets of different formats into the R environment
  • Perform simple visualisations of data



Recommended reading sections. 1,2,3,5,6,7

About the instructor

Peter Smyth is a Research Associate at the University of Manchester, based in the Cathie Marsh Institute. He has spent 35 years working in IT at various large and small commercial organisations before taking an MSc in Big Data Analytics at Sheffield Hallam University and moving into academia. In his previous roles he used any convenient programming environment to hand to solve problems. Now he teaches a variety of programming languages to help others to do the same.

He is a qualified Data and Software Carpentry instructor.