Non-Credit Course
Data Science and R: An Introduction

Harness Data to Drive Meaningful Progress in the World

  • Format: Online, self-paced
  • Engagement: Two optional live sessions with the instructor
  • Duration: Two weeks
  • Course: Non-credit
  • Course Fee: $500
  • Start Date: June 5, 2023

In today’s world economy, the most important global commodity is data. Professionals in public policy, international affairs, and economics must be able to process, analyze, and visualize large data sets. With the introduction of smart technology, the importance of data will continue to increase.

This course introduces the fundamentals of quantitative methods using the R statistical package. Students gain experience with basic R programming, data visualization, and descriptive statistics. As they progress, students apply their skills to a series of data tasks, so that they can showcase their proficiency by the end of the course.

Upon completing Data Science and R: An Introduction, students will be able to:

  • Use the R statistical software environment for data manipulation, analysis, and visualization
  • Provide descriptive statistics for quantitative data
  • Collect data from online sources
  • Visualize data through various graphs and illustrations
  • Build and interpret statistical simulations

Unlock the power of data science and R programming to better inform strategic decisions and uncover important insights. With flexible coursework and two live lectures, this non-credit course gives you the benefits of a top-tier Johns Hopkins University education at an accessible price.

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Johannes Urpelainen

Prince Sultan bin Abdulaziz Professor of Energy, Resources, and Environment

Johannes Urpelainen is the Prince Sultan bin Abdulaziz Professor of Energy, Resources, and Environment at Johns Hopkins SAIS and the Founding Director of the Initiative for Sustainable Energy Policy (ISEP). He received his PhD in Political Science from the University of Michigan in 2009 and spent the next eight years at Columbia University.

Johannes is the award-winning author of four books and over a hundred refereed articles on environmental politics, energy policy, and global governance. He teaches action-oriented classes on energy and environmental policy to equip the next generation of global leaders with deep knowledge, advanced analytical skills — and a passion for transformational social change. As one of the world’s top energy policy experts, Johannes frequently advises governments, international organizations, and the private sector on energy and environment.

As the Founding Director of ISEP, Johannes is responsible for the vision, strategy, and general management of the initiative. His work under ISEP offers pragmatic but effective approaches to providing the world’s population with affordable and abundant energy at minimal environmental impact. In his spare time, Johannes reads biographies and tries to improve his Hindi.

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Important Course Information

The Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) Data Science and R: An Introduction course does not convey academic credit and is not included on a JHU academic transcript. The course is intended for personal and professional skills enrichment. Any certificates earned for the successful completion of the course is intended for proof of completion only.

None, open to all.

  • Registration closes Friday, June 2, at 11:55 p.m.
  • The course begins on Monday, June 5 at 6 a.m. EST and concludes on Sunday, June 18 at 11:59 p.m. EST.
  • This course is divided into two learning modules that are one week in length.
  • Each module will take approximately 10 hours per week to complete.

  • The course includes two optional live meeting sessions with the course instructor via Zoom.
    • June 8 at 6–7 p.m. EST
    • June 15 at 6–7 p.m. EST
  • The teaching assistant will hold two office hours to answer technical questions.
    • Date coming soon
    • Date coming soon
  • In advance of the first synchronous session, please review the guidelines for participating in a virtual classroom.

The course includes two optional activities to allow you to demonstrate your acquisition of knowledge and receive feedback and guidance from the instructor and teaching assistant. The instructor or teaching assistant will review your activities and will give you feedback on the activity to you within five to seven days following the due date. You can access your feedback in the grades section of Canvas.

Upon registration, you will receive an email letting you know you have been enrolled into the course and how to access the course. You will be able to access the course and course welcome page.

One week prior to the course start, the Welcome and Getting Started modules will unlock. The remaining course modules will unlock on the course start date.

You will retain full access to the course for approximately two weeks after the last day of the course to receive final feedback on course activities and course evaluations. You will have read-only access for three months from the end of the course.

The refund policy is documented in the below list. Students may receive an exception to the refund policy for documented extenuating circumstances, such as medical situations or military requirements. Petitions should be submitted to the SAIS online and distance learning director. Refund requests should be emailed to*

  • Refund 100% prior to course start date.
  • Refund 50% prior to halfway point of the course.
  • No refund after the halfway point of the course.

*Do not share any personal identifiable information (PII) such as social security number or grades in any messages to

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Technical Prerequisites Accessibility Statement Technical Support Alumni Enrollment Information

About Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies

For 75 years, students have come to the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies to build their professional networks, learn from renowned faculty, train with policy practitioners, and gain hands-on work experience. Today, guided by the vision of its founders, the school’s cadre of expert faculty prepares students for exciting careers across sectors and around the world.

Rankings and Accreditation

  • #3 Best Schools for International Relations master’s programs, Foreign Policy Magazine
  • #10 Most Innovative Schools, U.S. News & World Report
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