August 20 to September 2, 2023 | Regional Institute for Population Studies, University of Ghana
The Summer Institute will bring together people from many fields and backgrounds. In order to use our time together efficiently, there are a number of things that you should do before participating in SICSS-Accra 2023.
TAs will host office hours through Slack and GoogleMeet to support you as you work through these pre-arrival materials.
In order to prepare for SICSS-Accra 2022, you should read Matt Salganik’s book, Bit by Bit: Social Research in the Digital Age (Read online or purchase from IndieBound, Princeton University Press), or Amazon, Barnes & Noble. Parts of this book, which is a broad introduction to computational social science, will be reviewed for most of you, but if we all read this book ahead of time, then we can use our time together for more advanced topics.
The SICSS Boot Camp is an online training program created by Chris Bail to provide you with beginner-level skills in coding so that you can follow the more advanced curriculum we teach at SICSS. The videos and materials are designed for complete beginners and are best viewed as a sequence since each video builds upon content introduced in previous tutorials. If you are already familiar with the topics in these videos, you do not need to complete them.
If you are less familiar with R programming, we also highly recommend that you complete a set of courses on the R programming on DataCamp before the Institute.
Intermediate Importing Data in R
Relevant reading: R for Stata Users (chapters 1-6, pages 1-116), R for Data Science (chapter 11)
Joining Data with
Relevant reading: R for Stata Users (chapters 7-12, pages 119-286), R for Data Science (chapter 5)
Visualization Best Practices in R
Relevant reading: R for Stata Users (chapters 14-16, pages 311-436), R for Data Science (chapter 3)
tidyverse(June 12 - June 23, 2022)
Categorical Data in the
Relevant reading: R for Data Science (chapter 12)
Other materials that we can recommend are:
Please note that most of the coding work presented at SICSS-Accra will employ R. You are welcome to employ a language of your choice, such as Python, Julia, or other languages commonly used by computational social scientists. However, we cannot support those languages.
Some of the activities will require coding, and we will support R. You are welcome to use other languages, but we cannot guarantee that we can support them. Before SICSS you should install a modern, stable-release version of R and RStudio.
Before participating at SICSS-Accra 2023, you should have an account in the SICSS Slack workspace. If you have not used Slack before, you should review these getting started materials. Slack can be hard to use at first, but we’ve found that it is the best way to enable everyone to collaborate.
Many participants at SICSS use GitHub to collaborate. If you do not yet have one, you should create a GitHub account. If you are a student, we recommend that you apply for a GitHub Student Developer Pack.