An upcoming series of Brock Workshops aims to satisfy the curiosity of anyone interested in learning how to use data analysis and visualization software, such as Python, PowerBI and Tableau.
The Brock University Library Digital Scholarship Lab (DSL) offers several free online introductory workshops in February and March.
Workshops will explore how to use a variety of tools to organize, visualize and analyze data; identify data trends and insights; and create high quality scientific and technical presentations.
In addition to the introductory courses, the DSL is offering a series of four-part Python workshops in March for those interested in exploring how to use the popular programming language beyond basic data science research, including text analytics and machine learning.
Workshops are open to faculty, students, Brock staff and the wider Niagara community. They each last two hours and take place via Zoom or Microsoft Teams. Some of the Python workbenches also integrate the Google Colab environment.
To register, click on the workshop titles hyperlinked below or search for workshops on ExperienceBU. All workshops will be recorded and a copy will be given to participants.
Brock’s DSL is a collaborative, multidisciplinary center for digital scholarship on campus. Digital scholarship draws on a wide range of expertise in library science, research data management, data visualization, data processing, digital preservation, and digital pedagogy.
Physically located on the ground floor of the Rankin Family Pavilion, the innovative and modern space features eight high-performance computers that professors and student researchers can use to manage, analyze and visualize data, as well as a visualization at the cutting edge of technology. wall featuring three 70-inch high-definition LCD display panels for the presentation of various forms of digital content.
Although technology and tools are often used by researchers, they can also be used to develop pedagogy and improve the learning experience for students. DSL staff can work with instructors to schedule class workshops or develop modules that fit their course curriculum. The staff is also available for individual or small group consultations.
The DSL offers several tools and tutorials to Brock researchers at no out-of-pocket cost, such as digital exhibits, digital book publishing, digital journal publishing, on-demand research tools, and cluster computing for humans.
DSL regularly offers workshops for anyone interested in computer programming, data management and geographic information systems. DSL workshops are listed on ExperienceBU and Eventbrite.
For more information on DSL and its workshops, visit brocku.ca/library/dsl
Upcoming initiation workshops
R for text analysis
Wednesday, February 2 from 10 a.m. to noon via Zoom.
R is a programming language for statistical computing and graphics. In this workshop, participants will learn how to perform simple decomposition analysis of textual data using the R programming language.
Introduction to Python
Thursday, February 3 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. via Zoom.
Python is a popular and versatile programming language. In this workshop, participants will learn the basics of Python for performing basic data science research.
A second introductory Python offering takes place on Thursday, March 3 from 10 a.m. to noon in a series of four Python workshops. See below for more information on the series.
Friday, February 4 from 10 a.m. to noon via Microsoft Teams.
ArcGIS StoryMaps combines narrative text, images, audio clips, videos, and interactive maps using a web-based authoring platform. In this workshop, participants will use the story of Laura Secord’s famous walk from Queenston to Thorold as the subject matter to create an ArcGIS StoryMap.
Introduction to OpenRefine
Wednesday, February 9 from 10 a.m. to noon via Zoom.
OpenRefine is a data management application for data cleansing and format transformation. In this workshop, participants will learn how to use OpenRefine to work with CVS data files in an intuitive and efficient way, such as ensuring data accuracy; use formulas to transform data into a more complete format; and identify trends in results.
Introduction to LaTeX
Thursday, February 10 from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. face-to-face and via Microsoft Teams.
LaTeX is a typesetting system commonly used to create cloud-based, high-quality scientific and technical documents and presentations that can be collaboratively edited. In this workshop, participants will learn the basics of LaTeX by using Overleaf, a browser-based collaborative LaTeX environment, to create a document in LaTeX and learn text formatting and commands for writing mathematical equations. This beginners course is offered in a hybrid format, with limited space available in the DSL on a first-come, first-served basis.
Wednesday, February 16 from 10 a.m. to noon via Zoom.
PowerBI is Microsoft’s data visualization platform. In this workshop, participants will learn how to use this powerful analytics tool to turn data into useful visualizations; create insights to enable quick and easy data analysis; share data with colleagues; collaborate with others; and improve research and presentations.
GitHub for researchers
Friday, February 18 from 10 a.m. to noon via Zoom.
Git is a version control system that enables effective and efficient project collaboration. Git and GitHub allow multiple people to share and edit projects, as well as track revisions. In this introductory workshop, professors and student researchers will learn how GitHub can be used to support research.
A second offering from GitHub for Researchers takes place on Thursday, March 31 from 10 a.m. to noon.
Introduction to Tableau part 1
Wednesday, March 1 from 10 a.m. to noon via Zoom.
Tableau is a powerful data analysis and visualization tool that allows users to work quickly and easily with large or small data sets. In this workshop, participants will learn how to import data and create various styles of effects for data visualization.
Introduction to Tableau part 2
Wednesday, March 9 from 10 a.m. to noon via Zoom.
Participants will apply their learnings from Part 1 to create a report using the datasets provided.
March Python Workshop Series
Introduction to Python
Thursday, March 3 from 10 a.m. to noon via Zoom.
The class will work on the basics of the popular and versatile Python programming language. At the end of the two hours, participants will be able to use Python to perform basic data science research.
Data Science with Python
Thursday, March 10 from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. via Zoom
Participants will learn how to use Python to analyze a dataset to find trends, visualize results, and perform complex analyses. Learners will also examine the Pandas and Matplotlib libraries using a test dataset of over 100,000 data points. The course will take place in the Google Colab environment and participants will need a free Google account to participate.
Machine learning with Python
Thursday, March 17 from 10 a.m. to noon via Zoom.
Machine learning is the study of computer algorithms that uses a data analysis method to automate the construction of analytical models. In this workshop, participants will learn the basics of machine learning using Pandas and SciKit libraries. By the end of the session, participants will understand how to apply machine learning methodologies on a dataset to predict outcomes. The course will take place in the Google Colab environment and participants will need a free Google account to participate.
Text analysis with Python
Friday, March 25 from 10 a.m. to noon via Zoom.
Text analytics extracts useful information from human language in an intelligent and efficient way. Researchers often use text analytics to assemble diverse and unorganized data into a structured form. In this workshop, participants will examine Python libraries, such as NLTK and TextBlog, to investigate insights and sentiment from data, and use Matplotlib to visualize the results. The course will take place in the Google Colab environment and participants will need a free Google account to participate.