M15 - Mastering R Skills: Selected Topics for Successful Programming

Type of Course - Dates - Venue - Description - Target audience - Exam - IMPORTANT: Incorporation in DTP and reimbursement by DS
Course prerequisites - Teacher - Course material - Fees - Enrol

Type of course

 This is an on campus course, with blended learning options.


Four evenings during the Easter Holiday: April 4, 7, 11 and 14, 2022, from 5.30 pm tot 9 pm.

Please note: the deadline for UGent PhD students who want a refund to open a dossier on the DS website (Application for Recognition) is March 4, 2022.


 To be confirmed


R is a powerful and extensive language, and in recent years a lot of useful additions have been made. This also makes it confusing at times to link the different paradigms together and find the most optimal workflow.

This course is aimed at giving you more insight in how to work more efficiently with R and RStudio. We focus on some more challenging data types, and give an overview of the necessary building tools to optimize your workflow.

The following topics will be covered:

  • Working with text: text comparison and editing with help of regular expressions
  • Working with dates and times
  • Working with files, folders and projects to organise your work
  • Automating using functions for standard R, tidyverse and ggplot2

Target audience

This course is aimed at R users with previous experience who want to optimize their workflow. The tools offered are useful both in research and in more commercial applications.


There is no exam connected to this module. Participants receive a certificate of attendance via e-mail at the end of the course.

Incorporation in DTP and reimbursement from DS for UGent PhD students

As a UGent PhD student, to be able to incorporate this course in your Doctoral Training Program (DTP) and get a reimbursement of the registration fee from your Doctoral School (DS) you need to follow strict rules: please take the necessary action in time. The deadline to open a dossier on the DS website (Application for Recognition) for this course is March 4, 2022. Please note that opening a dossier does not mean that you are enrolled. You still need to enrol via the registration form on this site.

Course prerequisites

Participants need previous experience with R and RStudio. They should have a good insight in how to work with vectors, matrices, data frames and lists. They also need to have a good basic understanding of the tidyverse data wrangling packages (dplyr and tidyr) and ggplot2. The topics covered in Module 1, Module 6 and Module 10 of this year's program are considered as known.


Foto Joris MeysJoris Meys is statistical consultant in the Biostatistics Department at the University of Ghent. He is the co-author (with Andrie de Vries) of 'R for Dummies' (Wiley, 2015). Joris Meys is an accomplished R programmer, and produces R packages both for specific research projects and, via R-Forge, for more general application. His statistical expertise is in the areas of ecotoxicology, analysis of environmental data, clinical research and meta analysis. 

Course material

  • Exercises and slides provided by the instructor
  • Cheat sheets and online manuals provided by the instructor


Different prices apply, depending on your main type of employment.

Employment Module 15
Industry/Private sector1 480
Non-profit, government, higher education staff2 360
(Doctoral) students, retired, unemployed2 160

1 If two or more employees from the same company enrol simultaneously for this course a reduction of 20% on the module price is taken into account starting from the second enrolment.

2 UGent staff and UGent doctoral students who pay internally via SAP or internal transfer can participate at these special rates.

Enrol for this course