Programming in R BIOL5133

  • Academic Session: 2019-20
  • School: Biodiversity Animal Health Comp Med
  • Credits: 10
  • Level: Level 5 (SCQF level 11)
  • Typically Offered: Semester 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes
  • Available to Erasmus Students: No

Short Description

This course will introduce students to the principles and practice of programming in the R language.


The course will be offered over two weeks, and will be focused on practical laboratory sessions (3 hours per day for 5 days), after an introductory 2 hour lecture on the first day.

Requirements of Entry

Students must have achieved minimum mark of B in the R and statistics component of their core Key Research Skills Course (BIOL5126)

Excluded Courses





Students will write submit annotated code and reports generated in R from small assignments during the module, reflecting participation and competencies learned in practical computer laboratories (50%). The remaining 50% will be based on an independent assignment studied during last day of class and completed after the module that will require integration of the evidence-based knowledge and skills learned, involving direct application of programming skills obtained.

Course Aims

The aim of this course is to provide hands-on training in programming in the R environment, and teach students to use the data structures appropriately to solve problems.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

With reference to the evidence base, by the end of this course students will be able to:

- Use appropriate data structures to retrieve and store information in R

- Select and justify the appropriate loops and program structures in R when solving a problem

- Use comments appropriately to explain program structure and design

- Write a document functions in R to carry out specific procedures

- Design simple computer programs to solve specified problems

- Write programs in R

- Generate reports in R where code is run and the output is discussed

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.