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Interactive Course

Introduction to Data

Learn the language of data, study types, sampling strategies, and experimental design.

  • 4 hours
  • 15 Videos
  • 46 Exercises
  • 53,137 Participants
  • 3,200 XP

Loved by learners at thousands of top companies:

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Course Description

Scientists seek to answer questions using rigorous methods and careful observations. These observations—collected from the likes of field notes, surveys, and experiments—form the backbone of a statistical investigation and are called data. Statistics is the study of how best to collect, analyze, and draw conclusions from data. It is helpful to put statistics in the context of a general process of investigation: 1) identify a question or problem; 2) collect relevant data on the topic; 3) analyze the data; and 4) form a conclusion. In this course, you'll focus on the first two steps of the process.

  1. Language of data

    This chapter introduces terminology of datasets and data frames in R.

  2. Study types and cautionary tales

    In this chapter, you will learn about observational studies and experiments, scope of inference, and Simpson's paradox.

  3. Sampling strategies and experimental design

    This chapter defines various sampling strategies and their benefits/drawbacks as well as principles of experimental design.

  4. Case study

    Apply terminology, principles, and R code learned in the first three chapters of this course to a case study looking at how the physical appearance of instructors impacts their students' course evaluations.

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Mine Cetinkaya-Rundel
Mine Cetinkaya-Rundel

Associate Professor at Duke University & Data Scientist and Professional Educator at RStudio

Mine is the Director of Undergraduate Studies and an Associate Professor of the Practice in the Department of Statistical Science at Duke University as well as a Professional Educator at RStudio. Her work focuses on innovation in statistics pedagogy, with an emphasis on computation, reproducible research, open-source education, and student-centered learning. She is the author of three open-source introductory statistics textbooks as part of the OpenIntro project and teaches the popular Statistics with R MOOC on Coursera.

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