Data Carpentry @ Tufts

Tufts University, Hirsh Library


Mar 9-10, 2021

10:00 am - 3:00 pm

Instructors: Andrea Kang, Rebecca Morin, Berika Williams

Helpers: Ari Gofman, Kristin Lee

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General Information

Data Carpentry develops and teaches workshops on the fundamental data skills needed to conduct research. Open to all, including learners who have little to no prior computational experience. Lessons build on learners' existing knowledge to enable them to quickly apply skills learned to their own research. Participants will be encouraged to work together and share experiences, with an eye toward applying what they have learned to their own research problems.

For more information on what we teach and why, please see our paper "Good Enough Practices for Scientific Computing".

Who: The course is aimed at graduate students and other researchers. You don't need to have any previous knowledge of the tools that will be presented at the workshop.

Where: This training will take place online. The instructors will provide you with the information you will need to connect to this meeting.

When: Mar 9-10, 2021. Add to your Google Calendar.

Requirements: Participants must have access to a computer with a Mac, Linux, or Windows operating system (not a tablet, Chromebook, etc.) that they have administrative privileges on. They should have a few specific software packages installed (listed below).

Accessibility: We are dedicated to providing a positive and accessible learning environment for all. Please notify the instructors in advance of the workshop if you require any accommodations or if there is anything we can do to make this workshop more accessible to you.

Contact: Please email for more information.

Roles: To learn more about the roles at the workshop (who will be doing what), refer to our Workshop FAQ.

Code of Conduct

Everyone who participates in Carpentries activities is required to conform to the Code of Conduct. This document also outlines how to report an incident if needed.

Collaborative Notes

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


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

Pre-workshop Survey

Post-workshop Survey


Day 1

Before starting Pre-workshop survey
9am - 10am Set-up Drop-in
10am - 12pm Data Organization in Spreadsheets
12pm - 1pm Lunch
1pm - 3pmIntroduction to R

Day 2

9am - 10am Set-up Drop-in
10am - 12pmOpenRefine for Data Cleaning
12pm - 1pm Lunch
1pm - 3pmContinuation of R: Data Wrangling
At the end Post-workshop survey


To participate in a Data Carpentry workshop, you will need access to the software described below. In addition, you will need an up-to-date web browser.

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.

Data Download Instructions

You can download all of the data used in this workshop by clicking this download link. The file is 206 KB.

Clicking the download link will automatically download all of the files to your default download directory as a single compressed (.zip) file. To expand this file, double click the folder icon in your file navigator application (for Macs, this is the Finder application).

For a full description of the data used in this workshop see the data page.

Software Install Instructions

The full setup instructions for the Data Carpentry Social Sciences workshops (with R) can be found at the workshop overview site. Please note: We will NOT be discussing SQLlite Browser in this workshop, so there is no need to install it.

Software Install Manual Available for Description
Spreadsheet program
(Excel or LibreOffice)
Link Link Linux, MacOS, Windows Spreadsheet program for organizing tabular data.
OpenRefine Link Link Linux, MacOS, Windows Tool for cleaning and transforming data.
R View these install instructions. Linux, MacOS, Windows R programming language.
RStudio Link Cheatsheet Linux, MacOS, Windows Integrated Development Envirornment (IDE) for R.

Install the videoconferencing client

If you haven't used Zoom before, go to the official website to download and install the Zoom client for your computer.

Set up your workspace

Like other Carpentries workshops, you will be learning by "coding along" with the Instructors. To do this, you will need to have both the window for the tool you will be learning about (a terminal, RStudio, your web browser, etc..) and the window for the Zoom video conference client open. In order to see both at once, we recommend using one of the following set up options:

This blog post includes detailed information on how to set up your screen to follow along during the workshop.

The setup instructions for the Data Carpentry Social Sciences workshops (with R) can be found at the workshop overview site.