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Workshops and Training

Northwestern IT Research Computing Services collaborates with campus partners to offer members of the Northwestern research community opportunities to develop data and computing skills, as well as learn about the services and resources that support research activities on campus. 

Subscribe to the NUIT-RESEARCH listserv for information about research and training opportunities happening on and off campus.

Fall Quarter Workshops

Programming Concepts

Wednesday, October 2; 1-4pm, Mudd Library 2210

New to programming? Want to learn R or Python? Come learn some of the fundamental concepts and terms—file systems, data types, variables, strings, vectors, loops, conditionals—that are shared across programming languages. Familiarity with these ideas will help you get the most out of introductory Python and R workshops.

Register

R Fundamentals: Parts 1, 2, and 3 Command Line: Introduction

Thursdays, October 3, 10, 17; Mudd Library 2210

This three-part series will help you learn fundamental R concepts such as data types, data frames, functions, and visualization. Great for beginners, as well those who may want to fill in gaps in their R knowledge. The same analysis examples and datasets will be used throughout the three parts of the workshop.

Register for the sessions that interest you, or join us for all three for a complete introduction! See registration links for details of what is covered in each part.
Register for Part 1 (getting started, data types)
Register for Part 2 (working with data frames)
Register for Part 3 (basic statistics, visualization, functions, loops, conditionals)

Command Line: Introduction

Wednesday, October 9; 3-5PM Mudd Library 2124

Using the command line (aka Unix shell, or terminal) is fundamental to using both your computer and more powerful cloud and cluster computational resources effectively. Whether using Quest (Northwestern’s high performance computer cluster), managing software and package installations locally, interacting with databases, using version control systems like git, or running machine learning models in the cloud, being comfortable with the command line will open up new computational possibilities.

Register

Introduction to the Command Line / Bash Part I- Chicago

Tuesday, October 15 2pm-3:30pm, Galter Library Classroom, Level 2

The shell is a useful operating system to most researchers who are doing any type of programming. The Unix shell is powerful and often the fastest and most direct way to work with files, folders, executing programs, etc. Also, most programmers operate in this OS, due to the simplicity and control over the system. In part I, users will be introduced to the command line and learn basic commands.

Users must bring their own laptops to this class. Library computers do not have a bash interface.

Attendees will learn how to:

Register 

Introduction to the Command Line / Bash Part II-Chicago

Tuesday, October 22 2:00pm-3:30pm, Galter Library Classroom, Level 2

In Part II of Intro to the Command Line, we will explore how to search within files, and write simple bash scripts.

Users must bring their own laptops to this class. Library computers do not have a bash interface installed.

Users will learn: 

Register

Git and GitHub: Introduction

Wednesday, October 23; 1-4pm, Mudd Library 2124

A version control system is a useful tool that keeps track of changes to files, including code and text documents. These systems are also crucial for collaborating with other people and merging changes while you work on the same files. Git is a popular modern version control system that is widely used, free, extremely fast and very capable. GitHub is a hosting service for git and a platform for collaboration. Come learn the basics of using git and GitHub.

Register

Quest Introduction

Wednesday, October 30, 3-5pm, Mudd Library 2124

New to Quest or looking to improve your familiarity with it? Come get an overview of the system, learn how to submit jobs, and get familiar with best practices. All researchers are welcome to attend, but you’ll need an active Quest allocation to participate interactively, which will help you get the most out of the workshop. See the About Quest page for more information on getting an allocation.

Prerequisites: Familiarity with the command line at the level of Command Line: Introduction. Optional, but highly recommended: A Quest allocation; see About Quest. Apply for the allocation at least a week before the workshop.

Register

Quest Introduction-Chicago

Tuesday October 29, 2-3:30pm, Galter Library Classroom, Level 2

New to Quest or looking to improve your familiarity with it? Come get an overview of the system, learn how to submit jobs, and get familiar with best practices. All researchers are welcome to attend, but you’ll need an active Quest allocation to participate interactively, which will help you get the most out of the workshop. See the About Quest page for more information on getting an allocation.

Prerequisites: Familiarity with the command line at the level of Command Line: Introduction. Optional, but highly recommended: A Quest allocation; see About Quest. Apply for the allocation at least a week before the workshop.

Register

GIS: Introduction to ArcPro

Wednesday, October 30; 1-4pm, Mudd Library 2124
Wednesday, November 13; 1-4pm, Mudd Library 2124

ArcGIS Pro is a desktop application for geospatial analysis available to all faculty, students and staff. The software is used for creating and using maps, compiling geographic data, analyzing mapped information, sharing and discovering geographic information. ArcGIS Pro allows you to store multiple items, such as maps, layouts, tables, and charts, in a single project. This workshop is targeted at new users with little to no GIS experience. We will begin with the basics of making a map, explore the main components of the user interface—the ribbon, views, and panes—and their interactions. We will then move on and complete some more complex analysis. This workshop is taught by Northwestern Library staff.

The same workshop is offered on two different days. Register for a single session.
Register for October 30
Register for November 13

Python: Scikit-learn

Thursday, October 31; 1:30-4:30pm, Mudd Library 2210

Do you want to build machine learning or predictive models in Python? Then come get started with scikit-learn. This workshop will cover the steps in the standard scikit-learn workflow and what models and options are available in the package.

Register

R: ggplot2

Thursday, November 14; 1:30-4:30pm, Mudd Library 2210

ggplot2 is one of the most popular R packages – for good reason. It's a data visualization framework that logically associates features of your data with elements of the plot. Once you've learned the basic ggplot2 syntax for making a plot, you can adapt it to make new visualizations with different plot types easily. ggplot2 makes plotting multiple data series with different lines or marker types straightforward, and it lets you create multiple plots for different groups in your data with one command. This workshop assumes you're familiar with R.

Register

Text Analysis: Matching and Linking

Wednesday, November 20; 1-2:30pm, Mudd Library 2124

How can you join information from two different datasets using names or places that don't match perfectly? How do you identify duplicate records in your data where text fields may have similar, but not identical, values? This workshop will cover strategies for matching and linking short pieces of text, such as names and places. The workshop will use R and functions from the tidyverse set of packages, but the concepts in the workshop will be useful even if you aren't familiar with R.

Register

Python: Text Analysis with NLTK

Thursday, December 5; 1-4pm, Mudd Library 2210

The Natural Language Toolkit (NLTK) is one of the standard Python libraries for text analysis. In this workshop, you'll learn how to use NLTK for common text processing tasks to get your text data ready for classification, named entity extraction, or topic modeling. This workshop assumes you're familiar with Python.

Register

Biopython: Introduction-Chicago

Monday, December 2; 1-4pm, Galter Health Sciences Library, Library Classroom, Level 2

Learn how to work with biological sequence data in Python. Biopython is a set of Python libraries that simplifies many of the most common bioinformatic tasks. This workshop will be taught through hands-on coding exercises, so participants should have a basic understanding of Python. 

This workshop will cover:  

Prerequisites: Familiarity with Python.

Register

R: Data Manipulation with the Tidyverse

Thursday, December 5; 9am-noon, Galter Health Sciences Library, Library Classroom, Level 2

Familiar with R but want to take your data analysis skills to the next level? Tidyverse is a collection of R packages designed for data scientists to easily handle data import, manipulation, exploration, and visualization – all written with the same core syntax. In this workshop you will gain experience working with real-life messy data and will learn to transform raw data into polished data for further analysis and plotting. Basic familiarity with R is required, but all levels are welcome.  

Things you’ll learn in this workshop:

Prerequisites: Experience with R of at least the level of the Introduction to R workshop.

Register

 

More workshops coming soon.

Online Training

DataCamp Online Courses

Access to DataCamp is available for researchers interested in learning or improving their skills with R, Python, SQL, spreadsheets, command line, and git through interactive, self-paced courses. Space is limited, and access is granted quarterly.

For more information and a link to the registration page, see DataCamp Access.

Safari Books Online

Northwestern University Libraries provides access to Safari Books Online.  This includes many popular books on programming, software development, and other technology topics.  It also includes online tutorials.  Students, faculty, and staff can register for an account with a Northwestern email address; access the link from the Northwestern network or VPN. 

LinkedIn Learning

Northwestern offers access to LinkedIn Learning (formerly lynda.com) courses for students, faculty, and staff.  Courses cover a wide range of technology and business topics including databases, programming, and data analysis. 

For more information, see the Human Resources LinkedIn Learning page.

Other Resources

Northwestern R User Group

The R User group meets monthly to learn more about R and network with others using the R statistical computing environment.  All members of the Northwestern University community using, or interested in using, R at all experience levels are welcome and encouraged to attend.

Upcoming meetings and more information.

Text Analysis Working Group

The Text Analysis Working Group is a group of Northwestern students, postdocs, faculty, and staff who meet regularly to learn computational text analysis skills together. Participants from all fields are welcome.

Upcoming meetings and more information.

Last Updated: 20 November 2019

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