GW Libraries: Data Carpentry (Social Science) with R + Spreadsheets + OpenRefine

George Washington University, Gelman Library

Feb. 11-12. 2020

9:00 am - 4:30 pm

Instructors: Dan Kerchner, Megan Potterbusch, Dolsy Smith

Helpers: Debbie Bezanson

General Information

Data Carpentry develops and teaches workshops on the fundamental data skills needed to conduct research. Its target audience is researchers who have little to no prior computational experience, and its lessons are domain specific, building on learners' existing knowledge to enable them to quickly apply skills learned to their own research. Participants will be encouraged to help one another and to apply 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 GWU graduate students, faculty, and other researchers. Advanced undergraduates are also welcome. (Affiliates of CTSI are also invited.) You don't need to have any previous knowledge of the tools that will be presented at the workshop. If you are not affiliated with GWU, please check the list of upcoming Carpentries workshops to find one that may be open to you.

Where: 2130 H St., NW, Washington, DC 20052. Get directions with OpenStreetMap or Google Maps.

When: Feb. 11-12. 2020. Add to your Google Calendar.

Requirements: Participants must bring a laptop 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 committed to making this workshop accessible to everybody. The workshop organizers have checked that:

GW has an institutional commitment to ensuring that all of our programs and events are accessible for all individuals. Materials will be provided in advance of the workshop and large-print handouts are available. If you require any accommodations (such as sign-language interpreters or lactation facilities) to participate in this event, please contact at least 72 business hours (3 business days) prior to the event.

Contact: Please email for more information.

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




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.

The setup instructions for the Data Carpentry Social Sciences workshops (with R) can be found at the workshop overview site. You do *not* need to set up SQLite Browser for this workshop.