Using Swirl in R

If you are new to using R and R Studio, but are interested in learning the rich value of the statistical computing and graphics software R, then swirl will serve you as a wonderful guide for learning the great power that lies with in the R software.  Swirl stands for statistics with interactive R learning.

R Programing Language

“swirl is a software package for the R statistical programming language. Its purpose is to teach users statistics and R simultaneously and interactively.” (

Once everything is loaded on your computer (see Students page on swirl website for instructions), you can open up the swirl package in R Studio and begin learning the program.  Once the program is installed, it is very simple to use.  Swirl will prompt you to create a name and will teach you how to save your progress (when ready to leave type: bye()). Swirl will also keep track of your progress on the right side of the console by measuring the percent completed.

Step by step, swirl will teach you how to operate the programming language.  At every step that you are taught something, swirl reaffirms and encourages you (e.g. “You nailed it! Good job!”).  Also, after teaching you something, they go in and highlight what the action does and how it is used.

swirl encouragement and affirmation


The lesson I was doing as I was writing this post went by pretty quick. I would encourage everyone interested in learning R to play around with swirl.  From my brief experience so far it is fun and easy to use.



Carchedi, Nick. “Swirl – Home.” (accessed May 21, 2014).


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