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A Data Carpentry Workshop

CAD Lab, School of Environmental Sciences, University of Venda, University Street

15 May - 17 May, 2017

8:00 am - 15:30 pm

Instructors: Ivo Agbor, Anelda van der Walt, Aleksandra Pawlik

Helpers: Martin Mafunda, Taiwoun Andre Patrick

General Information

Data Carpentry workshops are for any researcher who has data they want to analyze, and no prior computational experience is required. This hands-on workshop teaches basic concepts, skills and tools for working more effectively with data.

This workshop is sponsored by the Department of Higher Education and Training's Rural Campus Connectivity Project Phase II. It is jointly organised by UniVen, NWU, and Talarify.

We will cover Data Organization in sheets, , Data analysis and visualization in R and SQL for data management. Participants should bring their laptops and plan to participate actively. By the end of the workshop learners should be able to more effectively manage and analyze data and be able to apply the tools and approaches directly to their ongoing research.

Who: The course is aimed at graduate students and other researchers with no prior exposure to programming who would like to learn better practices for working with research data.

Register: Please register for the workshop by completing the online registration form.

Where: University Street, P/Bag X5050, Thohoyandou, 0950, South Africa. Get directions with OpenStreetMap or Google Maps.

Requirements: Participants must bring a laptop with a Mac, Linux, or Windows operating sytem (not a tablet, Chromebook, etc.) that they have administrative privileges on. They should have a few specific software packages installed (listed below). They are also required to abide by Data Carpentry's Code of Conduct.

Contact: Please mail for more information.

Preliminary Schedule


Please be sure to complete these surveys before and after the workshop.

Pre-workshop Survey

Post-workshop Survey

Monday Day 1: Data Organization in Spreadsheets

08:00 - 08:30 Rise 'n Shine Coffee Time
08:30 - 10:30 Caveats of data analysis in spreadsheets
10:30 - 11:00 Coffee
11:00 - 13:00 Open Refine for Ecology
13:00 - 14:00 Break
14:00 - 15:20 Introduction to R
15:20 - 15:30 Feedback and Wrap-up
15:30 - later Networking opportunity at Khoroni Restaurant

Tuesday Day 2: Data Analysis and Visualisation in R

08:00 - 8:30 Rise 'n Shine Coffee Time
08:30 - 10:30 Manipulating and Analyzing data with dplyr
10:30 - 11:00 Coffee
11:00 - 13:00 Data visualization with ggplot2
13:00 - 14:00 Break
14:00 - 15:20 Databases using SQL
15:20 - 15:30 Feedback and Wrap-up

Wednesday Day 3: Study Groups Setup and Community Building

08:00 - 8:30 Rise 'n Shine Coffee Time
08:30 - 09:30 Bring your own data
09:30 - 11:00 Discussion on UNIVEN-Carpentry Community Building
11:00 - 12:00 Feedback and Wrap-up

We will use this Etherpad for chatting, taking notes, and sharing URLs and bits of code.


To participate in a Data Carpentry workshop, you will need working copies of the described software. Please make sure to install everything (or at least to download the installers) before the start of your workshop. Participants should bring and use their own laptops to insure the proper setup of tools for an efficient workflow once you leave the workshop.

Please follow these Setup Instructions.

We maintain a list of common issues that occur during installation as a reference for instructors that may be useful on the Configuration Problems and Solutions wiki page.