A Beginner's Guide to R (2009)

Zuur, Ieno, Meesters

Based on their extensive experience with teaching R and statistics to applied scientists, the authors provide a beginner's guide to R. To avoid the difficulty of teaching R and statistics at the same time, statistical methods are kept to a minimum. The book covers how to download and install R, import and manage data, elementary plotting, an introduction to functions, advanced plotting, and common beginner mistakes. 'A Beginner's Guide to R' has been translated in Chinese and Japanese due to high demand.

The data and R code used in the book is presented at the end of this page.


Online R course based on the book

Our online R course is based on this book. With on-demand video files of Powerpoint presentations and R exercises. For examples of video files see Sections 1 to 4 and Sections 5 to 12 of Chapter 1. Left-mouse click to go to the next slide. If you cannot view this file please contact us for another format (e.g. MP4, AVI). These files are not streaming. You need to download and then play them. Click here for further information on this course.


Reviewer comments

  • A nice and positive review in The R Journal by Laura Schultz. Rowan University
  • This book contains everything you need to know to get started with R. "Its biggest advantage is that it aims only to teach R...It organizes R commands very efficiently, with much teaching guidance included. I would describe this book as being handy--it's the kind of book that you want to keep in your jacket pocket or backpack all the time, ready for use, like a Swiss Army knife." Loveday Conquest, University of Washington
  • "Whilst several books focus on learning statistics in R..., the authors of this book fill a gap in the market by focusing on learning R whilst almost completely avoiding any statistical jargon...The fact that the authors have very extensive experience of teaching R to absolute beginners shines throughout." Mark Mainwaring, Lancaster University 
  • "Exactly what is needed...This is great, nice work. I love the ecological/biological examples; they will be an enormous help." Andrew J. Tyne, University of Nebraska-Lincoln


Table of contents: Link


Sample chapter: Link


Data and R code

  • Click here for all the data in ascii format. And three Excel files used in the exercises.
  • Click here for all the R code.
  • Many readers have asked for the R code for the exercises, so we decided to make these available. This R file contains the solutions for most the exercises in Chapters 1 - 8. Solution code for other chapters is in preparation (November 2011). The ISIT file in the ZIP file above does not contain the month and year information. This ISIT file contains the Month and Year information and should be used for the exercises in Chapter 3. This file contains our BirdFlu file (after deleting all empty spaces and adjusting the column labels).