This week, I have taken a session on Multivariate Analysis and Parametric Testing using R in the workshop conducted by Department of Actuarial Science, Bishop Heber College, Trichy. I used this opportunity to work on R after couple of years. I started learning R in the year of 2010-2011 for the freelance statistical software development assignment I took at that time for the Chicago based startup company. One of the founder has trained me in R and it’s basics. He was a product manager for SPSS at that time and I must thank him for the investment he put on me in teaching R. That was a solid foundation and I cleared technical round at HP, India at that time with those knowledge learned. The person who took interview was very much satisfied on my skills on R programming alone. Unfortunately, I didn’t join HP at that time and that was another story. After that, for long time, I didn’t use R at all except I prepared a code for AOO regression using R.
In this workshop, I have taken Structural Equation Modeling (SEM) as a key concept and used R’s ‘lavaan’ package for the demonstration. The beauty of ‘lavaan’ is very simple to write model specification compared to other packages available in R. I was able to explain the concepts of SEM, it’s applications, and how it differs from other modeling techniques etc., Finally, demonstrated with R and showed them the analysis results and interpretation.
This opened up research scholars to use R package for ‘lavaan’ as it comes freely when comparing IBM SPSS Amos and other available paid software. I recommend research scholars and academicians to start use R on their work as it has much potential within it.
On the final day, couple of participants provided their feedback and from that I can notice that they are all really enjoyed the presentation and they might think on using SEM in their upcoming research work with this package.
lavaan’s website: http://lavaan.ugent.be/
Further to this workshop feedback and comments, the department of actuarial science has requested me to take weekend classes in R for their students for one semester for the students benefit. Positive sign!
Happy on promoting Statistics!