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Refreshing R programming skills and tackling new challenges: Meet Radha


Learn how Radha, a data analyst in India, used the Data Science: R Basics course from HarvardX, part of HarvardX’s Data Science Professional Certificate program, to brush up on the constantly evolving programming language.

How was your experience learning online?

It was an amazing experience to learn online. You can succeed in the online classroom without being an expert at self-teaching.

How has your learning impacted your career, life, or community?

The Data Science R program was a great way to fill the gap between my professional and academic experience and gave me the confidence to tackle new challenges.

How do you plan to use your learning in the future? What’s next for you?

As with any vibrant open source software community, R is fast moving. This can be disorientating because it means that you can never finish learning R. On the other hand, it makes R a fascinating subject: there is always more to learn. Even experienced R users keep finding new functionality that helps solve problems quicker and more elegantly. Therefore, learning how to learn is one of the most important skills to have if you want to learn R in depth. We emphasize the depth of learning because it is more efficient to learn something properly than to Google it repeatedly every time you forget how it works.

What advice would you give new edX students?

Good enough never is. Which is, I believe, the mindset that drives learners to continually improve ourselves, especially on edX. At the same time, do your best to stay ahead of the curve when it comes to what you want to learn and, more importantly, why you want to learn. Is it to learn a new set of skills that might help you get a promotion? Or maybe to solve a specific problem within your community? Take your pick whether it’s climate change, economic inequality, refugee crises, pandemics, the list goes on. Set yourself a “why” for your learning experience and always remember that you’re learning because of that.

Last updated: October 2020