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Advanced Courses in Life Sciences

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2nd Edition

R without Fear: Applied R for Biologists

September 19th-23rd, 2016, Barcelona (Spain)

R without Fear- Applied R for Biologists

In this course the instructor will walk you through the practical issues of applied statistical analysis step by step, introducing the R language and R commands to solve the most common problems faced by the statistical practitioner. The course has been designed by virtue of example and of artificial data sets “à la carte”, highlighting the most common challenges that entail the fit of data to models, from calculating the mean to simple generalized linear mixed models. The instructor has concentrated his 20 years of experience in statistical analysis in a single learn-by-doing one-week course. Since the course starts from the basics of statistical analysis and R code and increases in difficulty through the week, it fits the needs of a diverse set of scientists, from recent graduates and advanced undergraduate students to professors that want to refresh their statistical skills while switching to R.


Institut Català de Paleontologia Miquel Crusafont

C/ de l’Escola Industrial, nº 23
08201 Sabadell, Barcelona.

How to get there




35 hours on-site.

This course is equivalent to 4 ECTS (European Credit Transfer System) at the Life Science Zurich Graduate School.

The recognition of ECTS by other institutions depends on each university or school.


Places are limited to 20 participants and will be occupied by strict registration order.

Participants who have completed the course will receive a certificate at the end of it.


Jordi Moya-Laraño instructor for Transmitting Science

Dr. Jordi Moya-Laraño
Estación Experimental de Zonas Áridas


Soledad De Esteban-Trivigno instructor at Transmitting Science

Dr. Soledad De Esteban-Trivigno
Transmitting Science

Judit Marigó coordinator at Transmitting Science

Dr. Judit Marigó
Muséum national d’Histoire naturelle / Institut Català de Paleontologia Miquel Crusafont
France / Spain

Marta Montserrat coordinator for Transmitting Science

Marta Montserrat
IHSM “La Mayora” – UMA – CSIC

Ana Rosa Gómez-Cano coordinator at Transmitting Science

Dr. Ana Rosa Gómez-Cano
Transmitting Science


All participants must bring their own personal laptop (Windows, Macintosh, Linux).


  • Introduction to R and its working environment.
    • Types of variables in R.
    • Vectors, matrices and data frames.
    • Self-made functions.
    • Working with loops and conditional statements.
    • How to merge data tables.
    • Search and substitute of data values within tables.
    • Complex summaries of data tables.
  • Statistical analyses with some theoretical refreshing.
    • Statistical populations and samples through example.
    • Measures of central tendency and variability.
    • Precision, accuracy and bias.
    • Hypothesis testing: Falsability, Type-I and Type-II errors and statistical power.
    • Correlation and simple linear regression.
    • P-value vs effect magnitude.
    • Linear models: Residuals, assumptions and interpretation.
    • Explained and unexplained variance in a linear model (coefficient of determination).
    • Introduction to R graphics with statistical examples.
    • The concept of partial effect: Partial regression and correlation.
    • Additive vs. multiplicative effects: Disentangling the effect of interactions.
    • General and Generalized Linear Models.
    • Choosing the “best” models via AIC.

Previous editions of this course


1st Edition, September 21st-25th, 2015

Course R without Fear: Applied R for Biologists - 1st Edition, September 21st-25th, 2015Twenty-four people belonging to the following countries and institutions participated in this edition:

  • Tunisia: University of Gabes.
  • United Kingdom: East Malling Research, University of Nottingham, Royal Botanic Gardens – Kew.
  • Malta: University of Malta.
  • Lithuania: Vilnius University.
  • Denmark: Moesgaard Museum, University of Copenhagen.
  • Colombia: Universidad del Valle.
  • Spain: Instituto Pirenaico de Ecología – CSIC, Universidad de Murcia, Universitat Rovira i Virgili, Universidad Complutense de Madrid.
  • Germany: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History – Max Planck Society, Museum für Naturkunde – Berlin.
  • Estonia: Estonian Biocentre.
  • Italy: Second University of Naples.
  • Unites States of America: University of Washington, Burke Museum.
  • Poland: Wrocław University of Environmental and Life Sciences.


  • Course Fee
  • Early bird (until May 15th, 2016):
  • 410
  • Regular (after May 15th, 2016):
  • 575
  • This includes course material, coffee breaks and lunches.
    (VAT included)

We offer the possibility of paying in two instalments (contact the course coordinators).


The course will take place in the city of Sabadell, Barcelona (Spain).

You may stay in Barcelona city or Sabadell. You will find information about Hotels and Hostel in Sabadell here. It takes about 45 minutes by public transport to arrive to Sabadell from the centre of Barcelona city. The place of the course is about 15 minutes walking from the train stop.


Former participants will have a 5 % discount on the Course Fee.

Unfortunately there are no scholarships available for this course. However a 20 % discount on the Course Fee is offered for members of some organizations (Organizations with discount). If you want to apply to this discount please indicate it in the Registration form (proof will be asked later).

Spanish unemployed scientists, as well as Spanish PhD students without any grant or scholarship to develop their PhD, could benefit from a 40 % discount on the Course Fee. If you want to ask for this discount, please contact the course coordinators. That would apply for a maximum of 2 places and they will be covered by strict inscription order.

Discounts are not cumulative.


Course Schedule
Monday, September 19th through Thursday, September 22nd, 20169:30 to 13:30 Lessons.
13:30 to 15:00 Lunch.
15:00 to 19:00 Lessons.

There will be two coffee breaks each day, halfway through each lesson session.

Friday, September 23rd, 20168:30 to 11:30 Lessons.
11:30 to 13:00 Visit to the Museum.
13:00 to 15:00 Lunch.

There will be a coffee break during the morning lesson session.

The schedule is approximate; it is possible that the content of one day may run into the next and a working day may be longer than advertised.


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Colegio Oficial de Biólogos de Euskadi Logo
Colexio Oficial de Biólogos de Galicia Logo
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European Association of Vertebrate Palaeontologists (EAVP) Logo
Sociedade Brasileira de Paleontologia (SBP) Logo
Registration closed

Registration for this course is not yet available.
If you want to receive information once the registration is open, please subscribe without any obligation by selecting the topic Statistics.

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