Section outline

  • First Steps with R in Life Sciences

    Lausanne, 9-10 March 2016

    Trainers: Diana Marek
    Venue: University of Lausanne, Genopode building
    ECTS: 0.5 (given a passed exam)
    Fee: 100 CHF for academics. Others, please contact us
    Application deadline:
    1 March 2016
    Application status: CLOSED


    R is a complete, flexible and open source system for statistical analysis which has become a tool of choice for biologists and biomedical scientists, who need to analyze and visualize large amounts of data. Due to its popularity, R is continuously updated and extended with the latest analysis tools that are available in the different research fields. In bioinformatics, in particular, most published papers include a link to an R package implementing the methods described in the article.


    This "First Steps with R" two-day course is addressed to beginners wanting to become familiar with the R syntax and environment as well as with the most common commands to start using R to explore and interpret their data.

    Learning objectives

    At the end of the course, participants should be comfortable with the R environment and be able to read, understand and write R commands, that will allow them to implement and interpret a workflow for their data analysis:

    • Interact with the R environment
    • Import data, explore it and summarize it
    • Explore data with graphs
    • Test statistical hypothesis
    • Use statistical models


    Knowledge / competencies:

    As it is a course for beginners, no background in R or any programming language is required. However, you are encouraged to go through the R tutorial and documentation available here. Please also note this course is NOT a training on statistics but rather a training on how to use R to perform different tasks, statistics being one of them .


    a Wi-Fi enabled laptop with latest R and R studio versions installed.


    University of Lausanne, Genopode building, classroom 2020 (Metro M1 line, Sorge station)

    Additional information

    Coordination: Diana Marek & Grégoire Rossier

    You are welcome to register to the SIB courses mailing-list to be informed of all future courses and workshops, as well as all important deadlines using the form here.

    For more information, please contact

  • Day 1 (9h-17h):

    • Formatting your data
    • What is R ? Advantages and drawbacks
    • Getting familiar with R and RStudio environments
    • Getting data into R

    Day 2 (9h-17h):

    • Building some graphics in R
    • Doing some statistics in R

    Examples and exercises are integrated in the chapters.