Developing Data Products

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Course Date: 01 September 2014 to 29 September 2014 (4 weeks)

Price: free

Course Summary

Learn the basics of creating data products using Shiny, R packages, and interactive graphics. This is the ninth course in the Johns Hopkins Data Science Specialization.

Estimated Workload: 3-5 hours/week

Course Instructors

Brian Caffo

Brian Caffo, PhD is a professor in the Department of Biostatistics at the Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health. He graduated from the Department of Statistics at the University of Florida in 2001. He works in the fields of computational statistics and neuroinformatics and co-created the SMART ( working group. He has been the recipient of the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientist (PECASE) and Engineers and Bloomberg School of Public Health Golden Apple and AMTRA teaching awards.

Jeff Leek

Jeff Leek is an Assistant Professor of Biostatistics at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and co-editor of the Simply Statistics Blog. He received his Ph.D. in Biostatistics from the University of Washington and is recognized for his contributions to genomic data analysis and statistical methods for personalized medicine. His data analyses have helped us understand the molecular mechanisms behind brain development, stem cell self-renewal, and the immune response to major blunt force trauma. His work has appeared in the top scientific and medical journals Nature, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Genome Biology, and PLoS Medicine. He created Data Analysis as a component of the year-long statistical methods core sequence for Biostatistics students at Johns Hopkins. The course has won a teaching excellence award, voted on by the students at Johns Hopkins, every year Dr. Leek has taught the course.

Roger Peng

Roger D. Peng is an Associate Professor of Biostatistics at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and a Co-Editor of the Simply Statistics blog. He received his Ph.D. in Statistics from the University of California, Los Angeles and is a prominent researcher in the areas of air pollution and health risk assessment and statistical methods for environmental data. He created the course Statistical Programming at Johns Hopkins as a way to introduce students to the computational tools for data analysis. Dr. Peng is also a national leader in the area of methods and standards for reproducible research and is the Reproducible Research editor for the journal Biostatistics. His research is highly interdisciplinary and his work has been published in major substantive and statistical journals, including the Journal of the American Medical Association and the Journal of the Royal Statistical Society. Dr. Peng is the author of more than a dozen software packages implementing statistical methods for environmental studies, methods for reproducible research, and data distribution tools. He has also given workshops, tutorials, and short courses in statistical computing and data analysis.

Course Description

A data product is the production output from a statistical analysis. Data products automate complex analysis tasks or use technology to expand the utility of a data informed model, algorithm or inference. This course covers the basics of creating data products using Shiny, R packages, and interactive graphics. The course will focus on the statistical fundamentals of creating a data product that can be used to tell a story about data to a mass audience.


Will I get a Statement of Accomplishment after completing this class?
Yes. Students who successfully complete the class will receive a Statement of Accomplishment signed by the instructor.

What resources will I need for this class?
A computer is needed on which the R software environment can be installed (recent Mac, Windows, or Linux computers are sufficient).

How does this course fit into the Data Science Specialization?

This is the ninth course in the sequence. Although it isn't a requirement, we recommend that you first take The Data Scientist's Toolbox and R Programming.


Students will learn how communicate using statistics and statistical products. Emphasis will be paid to communicating uncertainty in statistical results. Students will learn how to create simple Shiny web applications and R packages for their data products.


Weekly video lectures and peer-graded projects.

Course Workload

3-5 hours/week

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