A guide for complete R beginners !

This tutorial is intended to introduce users quickly to the basics of R, focusing on a few common tasks that  biologists need to perform  some basic analysis:  load a table, plot some graphs, and perform some basic statistics. More extensive tutorials can be found on the project website and via bioconductor (not covered here).

R-language: http://www.r-project.org


Advantages of R

  • Free!
  • Powerful, many libraries have been created to perform application specific tasks. e.g. analysis of microarray experiments and Next-Gen sequencing (bioconductor: including Bioseq group).
  • Presentation quality graphics
    • Save as a png, pdf or svg
  • History
    • What you do can be saved for the next time you use R.
    • Ability to turn it into an automated script to perform again and again on different data



Getting More Help

  • Project Home page
    • http://www.r-project.org/
    • Check out the ‘introduction to R’, which is a much more in depth guide .
    • Also R has a built-in help system (see later)

Working directory

This is the directory used to store your data and results. It is useful if it is also the directory where your input data is stored.

  • Mac/Linux: this is the directory where you typed in R
  • PC: Change using the change working directory option