Event box

Writing R Packages

Workshop Overview

In this course, you will learn how to write your own R packages. We will start by demonstrating the basic steps of developing a new R package. You will then have time to practice adding new features and getting packages ready for publishing on GitHub and CRAN.

Learning Objectives

By the end of the workshop participants should:

  • Understand the anatomy of an R package
  • Know how to start writing and documenting a new R package
  • Know how to add and test/debug new features to an existing R package
  • Know how to publish R packages on GitHub and CRAN


This is an introduction to writing your own R packages, not an introduction to R programming! You should already be comfortable with installing and using packages from CRAN, reading help files, writing conditional expressions (if/else, for loops, etc.), writing functions, and doing other common programming tasks with R. A familiarity with GitHub would also be helpful.


Please bring a laptop that is running a recent distribution of Linux, Mac OS X 10.11 (El Capitan) or higher, or Windows XP or higher. You must also have up-to-date versions of R (3.6) and RStudio (1.2) installed on your laptop in advance of the workshop:

Please also sign up for a GitHub account if you do not already have one. It's free! Join here.


Workshop materials are available online here.


Karla Lindquist, PhD is the Scientific Lead for the Data Science Initiative in the UCSF Library.

Steve Mack, PhD is an Associate Scientist at the Children's Hospital Oakland Research Institute, and Associate Adjunct Professor in the Department of Pediatrics at UCSF.

Thursday, Sep 12 2019
10:00am - 1:00pm
Mission Hall 2100
Mission Bay
  Data Science Initiative     Data Science Initiative > Programming  
Registration has closed.

Event Organizer

Profile photo of Karla Lindquist
Karla Lindquist