Data Analysis: Planning and Preparing

2 Modules Duration: 2h30

This course on Data Analysis: Planning and Preparing introduces the essential elements of robust data analysis during research projects and why planning and preparing supports these. In this course you will discover how planning and preparing for data analysis will lead to effective analysis, benefitting your immediate research and ultimately your reputation and career. You will learn how to implement best practices in preparing your data in order to maximise the outputs of your research data and avoid time-consuming and costly mistakes.  

What you’ll learn

  • Why effective data analysis is beneficial to your research and your career
  • Common pitfalls and errors that can be avoided if you plan and prepare for your analysis carefully. 
  • How to create a data analysis plan
  • How to apply best practices for collating and quality checking your data
  • Benefits of carrying out a preliminary analysis and best practices in doing so.


  • 2-module course Certificate of completion
  • Benefit from the experience of 10 experts on research data analysis
  • English language captions and transcripts

Access options

For researchers

Your institution has a Nature Masterclasses subscription?
Great! Register or log in to access the full course.

Unsure whether your institution subscribes?
Here’s how to find out.

Your institution doesn’t subscribe yet?
Individual subscriptions are not available. Recommend our courses to your institution.

For institutions and labs

Give your researchers access to our on-demand platform to:

Grow impact and reputation through high-quality output
Support the professional development of your team
Save time on mentoring and training

The course

Introduction to data analysis and the importance of planning | 1h25 | 7 lessons

In this module you will learn:

  • The key terms and processes relating to data analysis
  • The benefits of preparing and conducting your analysis effectively, and the risks of conducting analysis poorly
  • The key challenges to preparing and conducting effective data analysis
  • How to create a data analysis plan and get feedback
Preparing your data for analysis | 1h05 | 7 lessons

In this module you will learn:

  • How to apply best practice to collate and merge the data you’ve collected
  • How to check your data
  • Strategies for carrying out a preliminary analysis