Excel on Steroids: McCall Outdoor Science School Offers Ramped Up Data Analysis and Graphing Workshop

Thursday, August 5 2010

Written by Sue McMurray

MCCALL, Idaho – Anyone who uses traditional spreadsheet software packages will benefit from a Sept. 11-12 workshop offered by the University of Idaho McCall Outdoor Science School. The “R Workshop” will train users in a robust data, programming, graphics and statistics software program.

The $160 fee includes workshop materials, food (Saturday and Sunday) and lodging (Friday and Saturday night) at the McCall Field Campus. Check-in begins at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 10.

“The open-source software package R is like Excel on steroids,” said Jan Eitel, workshop coordinator. “It handles large data sets, allows you to produce publication-quality graphs and is more flexible than traditional software packages.”

Eitel said natural resource agencies are showing interest in the software, and training may especially behoove upper-level undergraduate or graduate students interested in this field.

“Open source” means the software is free to the public. Workshop participants must have knowledge of basic statistics and experience with traditional spreadsheet software packages such as Microsoft Excel. Previous programming experience is not required.

Participants must register Sept. 5 by contacting Jan Eitel at (208) 596-9277, or by e-mailing jeitel@vandals.uidaho.edu.

Workshop participants must bring a laptop with wireless capabilities and have R installed prior to the workshop. R may be downloaded at www.r-project.org/.
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About the University of Idaho
Founded in 1889, the University of Idaho is the state’s flagship higher-education institution and its principal graduate education and research university, bringing insight and innovation to the state, the nation and the world. University researchers attract nearly $100 million in research grants and contracts each year; the University of Idaho is the only institution in the state to earn the prestigious Carnegie Foundation ranking for high research activity. The university’s student population includes first-generation college students and ethnically diverse scholars. Offering more than 130 degree options in 10 colleges, the university combines the strengths of a large university with the intimacy of small learning communities. The university is home to the Vandals, the 2009 Roady’s Humanitarian Bowl champions. For information, visit www.uidaho.edu.

About the University of Idaho
The University of Idaho helps students to succeed and become leaders. Its land-grant mission furthers innovative scholarly and creative research to grow Idaho's economy and serve a statewide community. From its main campus in Moscow, Idaho, to 70 research and academic locations statewide, U-Idaho emphasizes real-world application as part of its student experience. U-Idaho combines the strength of a large university with the intimacy of small learning communities. It is home to the Vandals. For information, visit www.uidaho.edu.