Master-class July 2020: Big Data Analysis: Online

This master-class introduces you to the collection and analysis of socially-generated 'big data' using the R statistical software, with a focus on social media network and text data.

 

It is being held online via Zoom

 

 

 

 

 

Dates: 
Monday, July 20, 2020 - Tuesday, July 21, 2020
Early bird cutoff date: 
Wednesday, June 17, 2020
Course details:

This online master-class introduces you to the collection and analysis of socially-generated 'big data' using the R statistical software, with a focus on social media network and text data.

 

 

The course will be run over two days over the following schedule (both days):

 

9.00am -10.30am: Instructional Zoom session (instructor provides demonstration and teaching)
10.30am-11.00am: Break
11.00am-12.30pm: Participants working on set exercises/activities (a Zoom session will allow the instructor to provide 1:1 assistance and also additional instruction to the group)
12.30pm-1.30pm: Lunch
1.30pm-3.00pm: Instructional Zoom session
3.00pm-3.30pm: Break
3.30pm-5.00pm:  Participants working on set exercises/activities

 
Master Class - runs over 2 days
Course dates: Monday 20 July 2020 - Tuesday 21 July 2020
Instructor: 

Prof. Robert Ackland has a joint appointment in the School of Sociology and the Australian Centre for Applied Social Research Methods (AusCen) at the Australian National University (ANU). He was awarded his PhD in economics from the ANU in 2001, and he has been researching online social and organisational networks since 2002. He leads the Virtual Observatory for the Study of Online Networks Lab (http://voson.anu.edu.au) which was established in 2005 and is advancing the social science of the Internet by conducting research, developing research tools, and providing research training. Robert established the Social Science of the Internet specialisation in the ANU's Master of Social Research in 2008, and his book Web Social Science: Concepts, Data and Tools for Social Scientists in the Digital Age (SAGE) was published in July 2013. He created the VOSON software for hyperlink network construction and analysis, which has been publicly available since 2006 and has been used by around 2000 researchers worldwide.

Venue: 
Online
Week: 
Week 1
About this course: 

This master-class introduces participants to approaches for collecting and analysing network and text data from social media, with a focus on Twitter, YouTube and Reddit.

 

The main software used in the course is R, but we also introduce Gephi for advanced visualisation. Data collection is via the VOSON Dashboard and vosonSML R packages for collecting social media network and data. We also cover other important R packages for network and text analysis such as: igraph (network analysis and visualisation), quanteda (quantitative analysis of textual data), tidytext and tm (text mining), wordcloud (text word clouds).

 

The course will be particularly useful to academics and PhD students who want to become more computationally literate, and those from technical disciplines (e.g. computer science, engineering, information science) who want to become more familiar with social science approaches to big data research. The course will also be useful for people from industry and government whose work involves quantitative analysis of social media data, e.g. for marketing, social research, public relations, brand management, journalism, opinion analysis.

Course syllabus: 

 

Day 1

    • Introduction to vosonSML, VOSON Dashboard
    • RStudio and R refresher, including installing R packages
    • SNA using VOSON Dashboard & igraph – 1 (network plots, basic node-/network-level metrics)
    • Collecting Twitter data using VOSON Dashboard & vosonSML
    • Text analysis using VOSON Dashboard & R – 1 (text preparation, frequency counts & wordclouds)

 

Day 2

  • Collecting YouTube/Reddit data with VOSON Dashboard & vosonSML
  • SNA using VOSON Dashboard & igraph – 2 (clusters, creating subnetworks)
  • Text analysis in R – 2 (sentiment analysis, semantic networks)
  • Advanced/extra material (e.g. topic models, introduction to dynamic network analysis, introduction to Gephi)

 

Course format: 

This masterclass will be run online, via Zoom. To ensure that participants are well prepared for the masterclass, there will be detailed instructions to ensure that they have the required R, RStudio and other R packages pre-installed before the masterclass. There will also be preliminary exercises (introduction to R and RStudio) that the participants will be expected to complete before the masterclass. The instructor will be available for consultation (via email or Zoom) prior to the masterclass, to provide assistance with installation of software and the preliminary exercises.

 

The format of the masterclass (both days) will be:

9.00am -10.30am: Instructional Zoom session (instructor provides demonstration and teaching)
10.30am-11.00am: Break
11.00am-12.30pm: Participants working on set exercises/activities (a Zoom session will allow the instructor to provide 1:1 assistance and also additional instruction to the group)
12.30pm-1.30pm: Lunch
1.30pm-3.00pm: Instructional Zoom session
3.00pm-3.30pm: Break
3.30pm-5.00pm:  Participants working on set exercises/activities

 

Recommended Background: 

It is advisable that you have taken at least one of the following ACSPRI courses, or have had some equivalent exposure to social network analysis:

 

It is also advisable that you have some experience with the R programming language (or similar languages) for example, via the following ACSPRI courses:

Recommended Texts: 

There are no recommended texts, but you can find information on relevant software, (including how to download and install, and help information) here:

 

 

Course fees
Member: 
$1,480
Non Member: 
$2,280
Full time student Member: 
$1,280
FAQ: 

Q: Should I have taken an ACSPRI R Course before attempting this course?

A: Not necessarily. However it is advisable that you either have some experience with social network analysis or experience with R (or a similar programming language).

 

Q: Do I need to have the VOSON Dashboard and vosonSML R packages already installed on my computer?

A: We will cover the installation of required packages at the start of the course. However, since there can be problems with installing new R packages (e.g. relating to the host operating system, version of R etc.) it is advisable that you install and test that these packages can load into session before the commencement of the course.

 

Notes: 

The instructor's bound, book length course notes will serve as the course texts.

Venues: 

Delivery of this course is online - via Zoom.

 

Please ensure you have the following:

  • Reliable Internet connection with at least 5Gb per day of data available (i.e. a 5 day course will use about 25Gb of data just on the Zoom application)
  • A computer/laptop with the Zoom application installed (free)
  • A webcam (built in to most laptops)
  • A headset with a microphone (not required but ideal)
  • A second monitor/screen if possible

 

Please also check the course page for specific software requirements (if any).

 

Venue and Timetable: 

You will be attending from home, and each course may specify a slightly different timing schedule. Please expect around 4 "contact" hours per day, with the remainder of the usual working day for exercises, group work and self-directed activities.

All times specified are in Australian Eastern Time (Melbourne/Sydney/Canberra time)