Statistics Corner: Introduction to R and R Commander (Rcmdr)

JOURNAL TITLE: Journal of Postgraduate Medicine, Education and Research

1. Kamal Kishore
2. Vidushi Jaswal
Publishing Year
Author Affiliations
    1. Department of Biostatistics, Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh, India
  • Article keywords


    Data collection and analysis is an integral component of medical research. Still, many medical students feel anxious while taking statistics courses—these are perceived as dry, dull, technical, and non-useful for clinical practice by medical students. Medical institutes struggle to motivate students to take statistics seriously—despite being, the same is necessary to capture, analyze, interpret, and understand patient data. The interest in statistics drops further when PowerPoint presentations full of notations and equations are used to teach. It is challenging for students to connect clinical practices with the utility of statistics. The time for rote teaching and training are the things of the past. 21st century problems demand 21st century solutions. It is better to teach statistics in a computer lab loaded with statistical software and actual medical data. Many institutes and departments have computer labs, but purchasing and renewing commercial statistical software is costly. Therefore, the question arises, is there any non-commercial easy-to-use reliable statistical software? A quick google search can display a long list of packages. However, almost all softwares restrict users in one way or the other. Of late, the adoption and popularity of R-software in the academic world have grown exponentially. R can be used, shared, and modified without any restriction. However, few doubts need clarification before adopting R in routine teaching and training. • What are R and Rcmdr? • Why use R and Rcmdr? • How to install R and Rcmdr? • Whom to contact for R and Rcmdr help?

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