Learn R programming with online courses and certificates
What is R programming?
R is a language and environment used to mine, organize, manipulate, and display data. It includes a data handling and storage facility, operators for calculations, data analysis tools, and graphical facilities. As a programming language, R has conditionals, loops, user-defined recursive functions, and input and output facilities.Footnote 1
R helps analysts identify patterns within data sets and then develop visualization projects based on the patterns found. Occasionally, the R coding language is also used for general programming. R is open-sourced and freely available on most UNIX platforms, including Linux, Windows, and macOS. It also doesn’t require much storage on any of these platforms. As a result, R is a popular programming language for analysis and statistics.Footnote 2
R was first developed in 1993 by Ross Ihaka and Robert Gentleman at the University of Auckland, New Zealand. R expanded on S, a statistical computing language from Bell Labs. R added lexical scoping to the capabilities of S, and was developed to be portable, versatile, and openly distributable.Footnote 3
The R Foundation is a not-for-profit organization and a core team of developers collaborating to support and maintain R. The team exists to preserve and improve R as open-source software. The graphics, interface, and accessibility of R are used by thousands of people who are learning R programming, elaborating on the R programming language, and improving its functions.Footnote 4
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What is covered in an R programming tutorial?
R programming courses are available for beginner, intermediate, and advanced learners. Learners interested in R programming can find various R courses and R language tutorials online, many of which are part of a larger statistics or data science curriculum. These courses take learners through the fundamental programming concepts, analytical skills, and R basics needed to analyze data sets and create graphics with the R programming language.
Some examples of the content covered in an online R course include:Footnote 5
Downloading, installing, and using the R environment
Key objects and object manipulation
Data structures (frames, lists, matrices, etc.)
Manipulating and preprocessing data
If students successfully complete an R language course, some courses may award an R programming certification.
Jobs that use R programming language
Jobs in data analytics and statistics may either require or recommend R coding experience. R experienced faster growth in demand during 2022 than languages like Python, Java, and SQL, according to HackerRank 2023 Developer Skills Report.Footnote 6
R programming jobs could include positions such as: data scientist, machine learning engineer, big data engineer, IT specialist, and database developer. Other R-specific job titles include R programmer, R analytics programmer, and R statistical programmer. Adding R coding language skills to your resume may help you in data specializations requiring mastery of statistical techniques, which can be learned on your own, through a boot camp, or a degree program.
How to become an R programmer online
If you’re interested in becoming an R programmer, it could be beneficial to acquire background knowledge of data science and statistical techniques before pursuing R. Every job is different and each company will have different hiring requirements, but a proven understanding of coding language learning is a basic expectation for most programming jobs. Learners can pursue this in many ways, including through a bachelor’s or a master’s degree in data science, as well as a boot camp in coding or data analytics. Many R programming courses provide R certification so learners can show potential employers their proficiency in R programming.