Crash Course

Visualizing Time Series Data in R

Everything you need to know to see and show patterns over time.

Visualizing Time Series Data in R

It’s often fun to explore time series data, because much of it is inherently intuitive. We have a sense of how time passes and how things change. From a visualization perspective, we can see the magnitude of that change and communicate to others in a way that is easier to process.

In this crash course, meant to be digested in a few days, you learn basic plot types for time series data and then get into the details of more advanced charts.

Then you work through common stumbling blocks, so that when you explore your own data, you don’t get stuck on the technical nitty gritty. Instead, you can spend time with interpretation and understanding your data.

Here’s the overview.

Getting Started

If you’re new to R, you learn a handful of the basics of loading and looking at data.

Basic Chart Types

Quick charts. Very little code.

Categorical Time Series Charts

Compare multiple time series at once to see differences and similarities.

Multiple Variables

Maybe you want to see more than one things at once over time.

Animation

Make it move.

Adjusting for Presentation

For when you want to communicate what you found to others.

Stumbling Blocks

Don’t get stuck in time.

The goal here is to learn the how so that by the end, you can go off and visualize your own data. There’s so much time spent on what and why, which are important, but aren’t especially helpful if you don’t know how to implement your ideas. Let’s take care of that part now.