Research Services offers tutorials and workshops on a variety of topics. Each semester, we present a series of tutorials. If you have suggestions, please contact us (researchservices@bc.edu). We will also give customized tutorials, and we are available for advanced topics and consulting. 

Tutorial Descriptions

Creating Web-Based Surveys with Qualtrics

Qualtrics offers a fairly intuitive graphical user interface to create complex surveys without complicated programming or coding. Qualtrics offers extensive documentation, free online tutorials, an extensive library of surveys and options for encryption and anonymity, and excellent customer support. Qualtrics also offers built in social media sharing functions and an accessibility checker. Working within pre-defined templates, you can use many different types of questions, including text, multiple checkboxes, sliders, single-answer radio buttons, and Likert scales. Qualtrics offers extensive branching functionality.

Once the survey is completed, data can be downloaded into a format that can be used with a variety of quantitative and qualitative analysis programs. Qualtrics also offers foreign language functionality.

This tutorial will demonstrate how to create a survey in Qualtrics and also include a section on research protections and informed consent with respect to online survey development, distribution, and analysis. Boston College faculty, students, researchers, and administrative staff
may create their own Qualtrics accounts in advance of the tutorial by
logging on at bostoncollege.qualtrics.com (with your BC credentials). If possible, please complete this short BC Qualtrics Terms of Use Survey before attending the tutorial.

Research Services staff are available to meet with members of the Boston College community to discuss individual Qualtrics projects. Individual consultations or customized class consultations are available by emailing researchservices@bc.edu or dalgin@bc.edu.

Presented by Rani Dalgin.

February 15, 2022  3:00 - 4:30 pm  Zoom* 

* We will email you the Zoom link the day before the tutorial.

A Gentle Introduction to Programming

The aim of the tutorial is to help researchers with no prior programming experience gain a basic understanding of the ways to leverage computer code to accomplish a specific goal. In this gentle introduction, we will rely primarily on visual tools and visual examples to establish an intuitive understanding of logic and code. We will then replicate our example in an abstract programming language (Python) to solidify the understanding by drawing parallels and highlighting differences between the two implementations. No prior knowledge of a programming language is required. Appreciation of water-loving cats is preferred.

Special Instructions

To view the materials, you must register for the tutorial following the standard RS tutorial registration procedure. You will receive a link to the videos and materials, and an invitation to join a discussion forum on google hangouts where you can post comments and questions.

Prepared by Simon Goshev

 

February 3, 2022  10:00 - 11:00am (Asynchronous)

Introduction to BC’s Linux Cluster

This tutorial is intended to be an introduction to the Linux cluster at Boston College. Currently, the user can access two clusters (Sirius and Andromeda). An overview, the primary components, and examples of how to use BC’s Linux cluster. This hands-on tutorial will cover:

  • Overview of the two Linux cluster system at Boston College
  • The hardware architecture
  • Management of Linux Cluster
  • How to remote access of the cluster
  • Common Unix/Linux commands
  • How to use software modules and PBS queuing system
  • How to submit jobs to clusters
     

Presented by Wei Qiu.

 

Febuary 16, 2022  12:00 - 1:30pm  Zoom*

* We will email you the Zoom link the day before the tutorial.

Introduction to Geographic Information Systems (GIS)

Geographic Information System (GIS) is used to conduct spatial analysis and visualize data in the form of maps. Esri’s ArcGIS Online is a popular cloud-based GIS mapping software that is used in academia and industry for spatial analysis. This tutorial is a beginner level introduction to GIS and will cover the following topics:

  • Overview of GIS
  • Examples of GIS applications
  • Introduction to ArcGIS Online
  • Demonstration of ArcGIS Online workflow
     

Presented by Awanti Acharya

 

February 3, 2022  2:00 - 3:30pm  Zoom*

* We will email you the Zoom link the day before the tutorial.

Introduction to Machine Learning

Machine learning is a data analysis method of getting computers to act without being explicitly programmed. It is based on the algorithms that use statistics to build models and find patterns in massive amounts of data. Machine Learning is extensively used in a wide variety of applications and changing our day-to-day life. This tutorial is for beginners to learn and will cover:

  • Introduction/Definition
  • Where and Why Machine Learning is used
  • Types of Learning
  • Supervised Learning
  • Unsupervised Learning
     

Presented by Yixin Pan

 

January 28, 2022  1:00 - 2:00pm  Zoom*

* We will email you the Zoom link the day before the tutorial.

Introduction to REDCap (Research Electronic Data Capture)

This tutorial is geared towards Boston College Principal Investigators, researchers and research project team managers. REDCap stands for Research Electronic Data Capture. REDCap is a web based, data collection, database management system that was originally developed at Vanderbilt University, initially for medical research. REDCap is now overseen by a consortium of academic research partners in the United States and throughout the world. Boston College is part of the REDCap consortium.

In this introduction to REDCap we will discuss:

  • How to request a REDCap project at Boston College
  • How to make sure that your REDCap project complies with the mandates of your project's IRB approval
  • How to create basic data collection forms
  • An introduction to best practices for setting up your REDCap project
  • We will discuss additional REDCap functionality including offline
    survey capabilities, text to voice capability, potential for using
    twilio.com SMS services (for an additional fee), improved field
    calculations, repeating forms and more
  • How to enter data into REDCap
  • How to control REDCap user access rights
  • How to export your data
     

Research Services staff are available to meet with members of the Boston College community to discuss individual REDCap projects. Individual consultations or customized class consultations are available by emailing researchservices@bc.edu or dalgin@bc.edu.

If possible, prior to the tutorial, please fill out the BC REDCap Terms of Use survey described on this google doc and indicate that you will be attending the REDCap Tutorial.

Presented by Rani Dalgin

February 8, 2022  3:00 - 4:30pm  Zoom*

* We will email you the Zoom link the day before the tutorial.

Introduction to Regression

As the most common methodology in statistical analysis regression is an important tool for any modern researcher. This course is intended as an introduction to standard or linear regression. We will focus on estimation methods, identifying and validating model assumptions. We will also focus on hypothesis testing for regression estimates and statistical model building. We will use R software but the goal of the course is to learn concepts and is not intended as a tutorial for any specific software.

Presented by Matt Gregas

 

February 1, 2022  10:00am – 12:00pm  Zoom*

* We will email you the Zoom link the day before the tutorial.

Introduction to Stata 1: Getting Started, Descriptive Stats, and Do Files

Stata is a powerful, yet easy to use statistical package. This hands-on
tutorial is designed as an introduction for beginning users who are just
getting started using Stata. The emphasis in this tutorial is on exploring the
data, cleaning the data for research purposes, and generating descriptive
statistics.

  • Accessing Stata on BC Apps (You will receive instructions on how to do this prior to the tutorial. See BC Apps instructions here.)
  • Loading data
  • Data manipulation
  • Descriptive statistics
  • Do-files and log files
     

Presented by Praveen Saini

 

February 21, 2022  10:00 - 11:30am   Zoom*

* We will email you the Zoom link the day before the tutorial.

Introduction to Stata 2: Graphing, Dataset Combining, Linear Regression

Stata is a powerful, yet easy to use statistical package. This hands-on
tutorial is designed as an introduction for beginning users who are just
getting started using Stata. The emphasis in this tutorial is on basic graphing, merging data, and linear regression.

  • Basic graphing and graph editor
  • Combining multiple datasets
  • Linear Regression in Stata
     

Presented by Praveen Saini

 

March 21, 2022  10:00 - 11:30am  Zoom*

* We will email you the Zoom link the day before the tutorial.

Meta Analysis

This is a new Research Services tutorial offering. Often hypotheses are tested in several different studies. The results of individual studies will be subject to variation and will produce results that vary at least in magnitude of the observed effect. Studies could also differ in conclusion and statistical significance. Meta Analysis is a methodology designed to summarize and combine the results of several individual studies, thus utilizing a larger and more diverse pool of research subjects. This tutorial will cover basic analysis models and methods. We will discuss ways to quantify between study heterogeneity and discuss common challenges to a accurate meta-analysis. In particular we will discuss the issue of publication bias.

Presented by Matt Gregas

 

January 27, 2022  10:00am - 12:30pm  O’Neill 254