Have R Will Travel
August 10, 2022 6:49 PM   Subscribe

Where to find part time / gig work with basic R skills?

Young friend has finished their intro R course and also done some unpaid side projects in R for scientists, including things like messy dataset wrangling and merging. Summer is ending, and they are wondering if they can earn some income during the school year with their R skills.

Mechanical R?


Coursework covered the following topics:
Introduction to Data
Distributions of Random Variables
Sampling Variability & Confidence Intervals
Hypothesis Testing & Comparing Two Means
ANOVA & Power Tests
Intro to Regression & Inference in Regression
Multiple Linear Regression
Inference for Proportions & Two-Way Tables
Logistic Regression & Classification
Introduction to the Tidyverse
They handled all the coursework and expect to receive an A.

Is this a skill set they can earn some income with during the school year? If so, how best to go about it?
posted by Winnie the Proust to Work & Money (4 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
They should be PAID by academics to do R-based data wrangling. If they are a student, see if they can get a work-study job in that lab or research group.
posted by rockindata at 7:08 PM on August 10, 2022 [3 favorites]

Response by poster: Clarification about the unpaid R work: one was essentially a collaboration; the other was a high quality but unpaid summer internship. Young friend is a high school student, so work-study jobs aren't an option.
posted by Winnie the Proust at 7:13 PM on August 10, 2022 [1 favorite]

Depending on their life situation, they may be able to continue in a program at university intended to engage future data science professionals.

I do and supervise data science for applied projects in a hospital. Although I know lots of people who use consultants for data science tasks (and recommend this), I would basically never farm work to such a person without knowing that they were somehow really exceptional. An HS student during the school year has poor availability, and people with small amounts of experience require their work to be extensively checked. Once you run into the bounds of what they have done before, it becomes very unreliable and time consuming. We have master's students in similar part-time positions, and it is usually low productivity and something that I tolerate on behalf of the training program.
posted by a robot made out of meat at 7:55 AM on August 11, 2022 [2 favorites]

My first experience working for pay with R (during university) was a dismal casual position wrangling data at a market research company. I got numerous things wrong in working with Excel (I recommend the openxlsx R package) or picking up errors I was meant to notice. But there were a couple of things I did really well (essentially because I knew R and what it could do (loops, etc) and nobody else did).

The availability issue is the most significant in my eyes - these kinds of companies don't work on Saturdays so much. But data scutwork positions do exist.

While they're still in high school I'd be advising them to pursue whatever personal projects they think they might get something out of, rather than working to a wage. Yes, it's not ideal if what they need is cash now; but selling your availability is 60% of a job, and they don't really have that to give away if they're still in school.
posted by solarion at 12:12 AM on August 12, 2022

« Older My endoscopy today failed — became agitated. How...   |   European town for October vacation Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.