Excellent course! I already knew a lot about R - but this class helped me solidify what I already knew, taught me lots of new tricks, and now I have a certificate that says I know `something' about R!
Very challenging, but good course. I've been programming in R for over a year, but there were still some things for me to pick up in this class. Assignments were a challenge, but satisfying to tackle.
von De L P G d C•
No easy explanations
von Oren T•
very old material.
von Abhay S•
I really cannot recommend this course for lack of its structure but as I have decided to do the specialization now I cannot stop. Quizzes are good and test the depth of concepts we understood in lectures but programming assignment fails everything. It feels like lectures are made by a person and assignments by a completely new person with a lack of communication. A strong suggestion from being new to programming is that consider the lectures as per the assignments you have made. Programs required to complete the assignments include functions that have not been covered in the lectures nor have they been provided in any supplemental or suggested reading. Assignments are mean to implement what we have learned in the lectures and readings. But the codes required to complete the assignments either have not been taught or mentioned with good references. People with prior programming experience can adapt to it but me being new to it struggled a lot. Especially on week 3 and week 4 programs. I literally had to do filter and sort data in excel to be able to answer some questions in the programming assignments. Please refer course on "Strategic Leadership and Management" by the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in Coursera. There is such an amazing interrelation among assignments and teaching that it makes you want to go further and also try to read or work around more. Please first consider the assignment you want students to complete and then design the lectures. For the week 3 program, I learned after lots of googles to use the argument 'pattern' in the read.csv function. It's really frustrating to solve those programs without a proper understanding of functions. I hope you make the changes as after completing this course even we can utilize it.
Thank you for your efforts.
von Melissa P•
I would not recommend this course to anyone. I enrolled in this course because I am familiar with statistical analysis and wanted to become more adept at using R, and this course was very disappointing.
The lecture material and practice assignments in Swirl are nice, but they leave you totally unprepared to complete the quizzes and assignments. There is a massive leap in difficulty from the practice assignments and lectures to the quizzes and programming assignments. Going back over the lectures, practice assignments, and textbook will provide only minor assistance for assignments - there is not enough information to complete the assignment.
Because the course resources are inadequate, students must spend hours Googling and troubleshooting in order to finish assignments. An article posted on the course discussion board claims that this is due to the creators wanting to instill a "hacker mentality" in students, so they will work to find the answers themselves.
While I agree that students should not be spoon-fed the answers, this is a course that charges an admission fee. I took this course because I was looking for resources to learn - if I wanted to spend hours searching random corners of the internet for the answers to R programming questions, I could've done that on my own time at no charge. I feel like I took a basic anatomy course and the first test required me to safely remove someone's appendix.
In short, do not take this class.
von Ertan Y•
If you are planning to learn R, then go and buy a book. This course is a complete scam. At least don't pay any money. The reasons;
1.) They advertise that you need couple of hours of study per week. That's a lie, you have to study much more than that unless if you know a little R programming.
2.) The quiz questions are totally unrelated from the lessons. They teach you the basic stuff but they expect you to accomplish intermediate quizzes.
3.) The instructor has no idea how to teach. May be he is trying to prove something. I couldn't really understand his motives. If you really want to teach that's simple. You do couple of extra videos and teach whatever you are asking in quizzes, or tell us to read a certain material. He didn't do any of them which means he either doesn't know how to teach or this specialization is a complete scam.
4.) And I don't really understand what coursera is doing by the way? What kind of a business model is this. I was planning to enroll many specializations but now I am not going to do it. So think about how much they are loosing. Where is the quality assurance. Just because one guy comes up to you and say that he teaches this and that do you believe them?
MY ADVICE TO YOU: DON'T PAY ANYTHING FOR THIS SPECIALIZATION. AND FOR ANY OTHER COURSE READ THE BAD REVIEWS FIRST (WHICH WAS MY MISTAKE).
von Glynis D•
The materials in this course are very poorly thought out. (Content of lectures does not match quizzes and assignments, for example. This is obviously intentional, as what the course calls hacking skills is emphasized. By this they mean googling things and figuring stuff out on your own. However, this course gets you barely a step above buying a book on Amazon and just having at it. Yes, the course is nearly free, but your time is valuable.) For example, the unit on missing values explains NA and NaN, but does not mention complete.cases, which is the one you need for the assignment. It's only like a 5 minute video, so why not cover that as well?
Worse than that, the assignments and quizzes are deliberately designed to trip you up. You will think you have fulfilled the assignment and then when you get to the quiz you realize that you cannot answer the question using the code you wrote because now you are being required to add extra bells and whistles. This process is demoralizing and is obviously intended to make the learner feel as though they are at fault for struggling, when in fact at no time is the learner informed that the educational materials provided are intentionally insufficient.
Underlying all of this is a weed-them-out educational philosophy that really has no place in the 21st century.
von Tongke Z•
I only took the first week, and then I quitted. I took the first-week course twice. The first time I took it--I thought it was my problem--because I haven't code for many years so I can't follow with it. Then I took it the second time and realized that it is not me, it is the course itself.
It is so poorly structured!!!!! There are a lot of concepts in the first course, like objects, vector, list, sequence, attribute, class, integer, etc. You might ask me why I listed those concepts which are not structured. It is because the instructor taught those all at once! I wanted to ask if you know how to structure your course! We also know that at the beginning of a course, you should give an overview first, and then structure the notions before you dive into details. You should introduce the notion of the object first. and then introduce the attributes of objects, among which class is one of the attributes. Then introduces that the most basic object is a vector. and then introduce different formats of vectors, and how to create them.
My Coursera experience has been disturbed by the courses in this specialization very much. I feel shame about your instructors.
von Tyler B•
I had really high hopes for this course. I am not a programmer, though in college I learned C, C++, and used MATLAB a fair amount. I wanted to learn R because it is a free software versus paying a licencing fee to use SPSS which I have done in the past. I had already completed the first week of the course and the first week in this course. I went through the slides and I didn't really feel like I learned any actual programming so then to expect to answer questions where you had to program seemed a bit out of left field. As a comparison it felt like they had an hour worth of slides talking about different trees and how to differentiate them then asked you to drive a tank.
I then took the time go through two swirl assignments which I hoped was going to fill in the many gaps left by the slides. They were definitely more helpful than the slide show, but I still felt like they would teach you how to add then ask you to multiply.
So in general my recommendation would be not to take the course unless you have a fairly solid understand of programming, otherwise you will do what I did and just wasted $50.
von Marc m•
Terrible course. The contents, thrown as a videocast dumpout, have nothing to do with the assignments. Remember this is a beginners' class.
eg. on Week2, the elements or functions necessary to carry out the assignment are simply not taught, and despite the excellent SWIRL and doing over the entire course ( in case I missed something) I was irretrievably stuck. As many have been if I judge by the forums.
What is the point in teaching a beginner's courses to beginners and then applying Graduate school thinking that just discourages? for me this is just an excuse for poor and unfocussed teaching.
I suggest to be very wary of the J.Hopkins school course moving forward, they don't deliver a course that meets the expectations: in real life, when a student is stuck, you help out, at least you highlight the course material: which of course can't be done here, because the course material is NOT related to the Assignment. as has been pointed out numerous times in the forum.
Marc Messier, PhD.
von Noah M•
Very poorly constructed. There are major jumps in the difficulty of material that are completely unnecessary. The material could very easily be broken down into more manageable and comprehensible chunks. There is no repetition of any exercise or function to engrain any of the material. This course suffers grossly from the "curse of knowledge". If it were structured in a way where (a) material was broken down into smaller bits, ideally as beta tested by true rank novices and (b) all materials or specific functions were presented with repetition, similar to how khan academy structures its math section, then this course would be much better. I would also assume, given a and b, that there would be higher retention and comprehension. The expected time requirements are also wildly amiss. Try beta testing this on TRUE rank novices. The program suggests that this is for "beginners". I find it doubtful that a true beginner would fare well in this course.
von Diego L•
A University Course should be a place where you advance your knowledge with a "limited and reasonable" amount of time spent in the course. The role of instructors should be to "invest" the time to provide the concepts and information for the students of the course to "learn" faster than if they had to research (the planet) by themselves to find the knowledge. The information provided by instructors therefore must be "accurate and complete". This course has so many "incomplete" pieces of information, that it requires insurmountable amounts of time to "find" the concepts required to apply the knowledge, hence it becomes a gigantic "time waster". Unfortunate! the tool and the concept of data science is necessary, but a course organized this way is only for "full time students" that have only one obligation, study. This course as it is should not be in Coursera.
von attila n•
This course is a joke. The concepts of the language are not explained, the assignments - which are very simple conceptually - cannot be done with what is taught up to the week, materials are poorly structured. (Eg. when class is introduced its operators, properties, etc should be mentioned right away.)
The point of taking a class is to get guide to move forward fast, save the time spent on reading forums, walking though books of hundreds of pages. This class will save you no time at all, but causes a lot of frustration. (Eg.: to cast a character in a data frame (used in the 1st assignment) is done by as.numeric(as.character(char)), instead of as.numeric(str) which seems natural to me. There must be a reason why you need to cast(?) the char to character before casting to numeric, but the instructor thought it wasn't worth to mention.)
Don't take it.
von Ginger J•
Don't take this course unless you have a programming background. Week 2 has a programming assignment that is way to advanced for students without any programming knowledge. This assignment deals with functions, where the code is complicated. What's unfortunate is that you have to finish ever assignment, including this impossible assignment (for beginners) to get recognition for the course. I spent most of my time researching other sources for information because the lectures, and the supplemental information given on a different site, by the instructor (which indicate knowledge that the lectures are insufficient) give trivial examples when the programming assignments are anything but. This course needs some serious adjustments, either with the prerequisites needed for success in this course, or with the material within the assignments themselves.
von Vania I R•
Coming from a PhD student who is by no means dumb, this course is terrible! Too much theory with little to no examples/sample exercises. You will see a symbol once and expected to remember it for future assignments. Speaking of which, the assignments are 10 times harder than the theory and examples shown. If the lectures talk about doing something with a vector of numbers going from 1 to 10, the final assignment will ask you to do that same thing but with several different data files with their own rows and columns of data. You're basically being asked to swim (not even run) shortly after being shown how to crawl. Terrible experience and I would not recommend it to anyone who cannot pick up on this stuff quickly. My main regret is I quit few days after my monthly payment so unfortunately that's money I'm never getting back.
von Alessio V•
there is a huge distance between what you teach in the videos, which is fine, and the programming assingments which seem to be apt at an expert audience.
to solve these problems I have to spend hours and hours on the internet looking at other people doing similar projects or asking for help.
I agree that by looking you can get insight into what you are doing, but the lessons need to be built little by little and supported by practice.
You can't slam me with these cache problems giving me an example that is hard to understand (much harder than anything seen during class) and expect me to do it in 5 hours per week. Maybe 5 hours per day.
Disappointed. I wanted to use the whole course to learn about rprogramming but I will most likely try to get back the money I spent on this and let it go.
von Ryan D•
The video lectures will help you to pass the quizzes, as they are primarily theory and background. The lectures will not, however, aide you in any way in completing the programming assignments. The first programming assignment is extremely difficult and very little is done in the lectures, the textbook, or in swirl to pull all of the pieces together prior to the first programming assignment/quiz. There are so many disparate concepts, that it would be nice if the instructor could at the very least, demonstrate a full analysis of some kind of tabular data in R. How to properly import the data, create the file, structure the data, and then perform some analysis. These concepts are introduced throughout the course, but never brought together in one complete project.
von Solt B•
I managed to complete this course, but that was because of my four years of "MOOC-level" "programming experience" and duckduckgo (~google), not because of the course material. Videos are dull readings of the pdfs, with many "ummmm"s and annoying lip-clicks. Examples are useless, explanations are often vague or even incomplete. The assignments are relatively hard in that you don't get all the necessary info from the course, sometimes even R's own manpages aren't enough. (Which is a shame, as you'd expect a course to teach you how to use the tools you will need for the assignments.)
If you have no programming experience, stay away from this course!
Otherwise, if you want to learn R, look for other resources, and save yourself some time and money.
von Pablo M A C•
The course is totally poorly structured. The classes are very basic, the swirl exercises give a good insight, but the assessments are on a totally different level. Much of what is needed to solve the assessments is not taught in the course, so why take classes?
Much of what is needed to solve the assessments is not taught in the course, so why take classes?
Muito do que é necessário para resolver as avaliações não é ensinado no curso, então por que fazer aulas?
Much of what is needed to resolve the evaluations is not taught in the course, then, to have the classes?
Muito do que é necessário para resolver as avaliações não é ministrado no curso, então, para ter as aulas?
von Tim B•
Although the information on the course states that it requires no prior programming knowledge, that statement isn't accurate. You will quickly become lost in the assignments and questions as they are a not a logical progression from the lecture material. The instruction from Mr Peng is all over the place and doesn't give you a good understanding of the language. I found SWIRL to be 100% more helpful. But looking at the upcoming materials, you need to have a solid background in programming to complete this specialization. Which SHOULD have been told to students prior to them spending money on the course. I would NOT recommend this course to anyone.
von Greg M•
Videos are poorly narrated and are marginally effective: vocabulary + key concepts only. The "swirl" exercises are woefully inadequate to prepare students for the quizzes. Foundational tasks (i.e. establishing a valid connection to the sample data) are conspicuously absent from the guided exercises; leaving too many students to seek help from message boards and google. Lastly, the "professors" are completely unreachable: they may as well be dead. After 30 years in the IT industry, I found this course to be profoundly aggravating and a complete waste of my time - I have abandoned this course and bought a "Teach Yourself" book instead.
von Melanie F•
If you enjoy floundering helplessly and feeling incredibly stupid, this is the course for you. Expect a few slides on basic concepts (all of which you need a VERY large screen to read because they seem to all be in 8 point font), and then get flung full force into coding. There are no worked examples. You might as well just buy a Reilly book. My partner and I both wanted to learn R for econometric analysis. He can do more after a 1 day seminar than I can do in a month struggling with this course. I had considered pursuing a graduate degree at Johns Hopkins, but if this is the level of instruction I can expect, then no chance.
von Roy H•
not the model of learning that is encouraging or sticks. hard for a student (even one who has a programming background) to sit through hours of slides explaining what the functions and definitions in the language do without a layer of use context upfront.
The content jumps from specific examples to unrelated specific definitions without carrying a sense of integrating the new knowledge with any past knowledge in the course. the whole course seems disjointed.
would have been much more effective as learning through examples and to be taught functions and definitions as they come up in problem solving.
von Jillian P•
The lectures and Swirl exercises are extremely easy to understand and follow, but then the assignments are incredibly complicated and difficult. The assignments ask for techniques that aren't focused on or even covered in the lectures. The tips offered by Al Warren in the Discussion forum make the assignments possible to do. Since the tips are so critical to understanding and completing the assignments, I think Al Warren's tips should be incorporated as part of the core course. This course needs more time to be covered in depth - it's a lot of ground to cover in just one month,
von Emmett M•
Course does not do a good job actually explaining R or training you on how to properly use it. The lectures go over the material very fast and you do not get much out of them, and then the assignments throw complex problems that are very difficult. You spend most of your time Googling to learn it, and I find that I would have learned R better if I just did that to start without this course. Maybe if you aren't new to R and have a programming background, it may not be so bad, but if you are new to R and not an experienced programmer, this is not the class to take to learn it.
von dhairya p•
Firstly, the level of assignments which are given are vey tough. This is due to the fact that the topics that are taught in the videos are of amateur level and the assignments are more than advanced level. No link between what is taught and what is asked. I am new to programming and i dont think person like me would recommend other to take this course. Even guys who has background in R would find this tough. I spent more time reading blogs and discussion forums than time spent on watching the course videos. WONT RECOMMEND TO OTHERS. STRONGLY UNSATISFIED.