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"Réussir son programme doctoral" Workshops

For the Réussir son programme doctoral activities, the library offers the following workshops.


Accessing administrative data

Instructor: Benoit Dostie, Professor, Department of Applied Economics

This workshop introduces you to the high-quality survey and administrative micro data available from Statistics Canada and the Institut de la Statistique du Québec through the Quebec Interuniversity Centre for Social Statistics (QICSS).

Both types of data are accessible through a secure Research Data Centre (RDC) at the Université de Montréal that holds detailed confidential micro-data from over 80 household and population surveys, the census master files, business data, and an increasing number of administrative sources.

In order to assist you in determining which data may be relevant to your research, the Statistics Canada public use data and secure RDC data will be reviewed.

The workshop will cover the practical issues involved in searching and requesting access to the data, and the support available to help you analyze the data.


Access to financial information (LACED) : dissemination and promotion

Instructors :

  • Michel-Y. Keoula Ph. D., Data Analyst (LACED) and MSHC Coordinator
  • Mohamed Jabir, M. Sc., Data Analyst (LACED), HEC Montréal Library


After an introduction on the role of data preparation in the data analysis workflow, the workshop will present the infrastructure available at the LACED for computing, data preparation and data analysis.

The presentation will proceed by a description of the various financial databases that students, researchers and professors can access via the LACED and the library of HEC Montreal. Then the various types of support and trainings provided by the library team to each group of users for data preparation and analysis will be spelled out.

The workshop will also demonstrate how to setup an account and undertake data extraction on the WDRS platform. The concluding discussion will address the implementation of the rules governing the academic use of the databanks, from the extraction to the dissemination phases.


Information Literacy

Instructor : Caroline Archambault, Consulting Librarian

Learn advanced search strategies and techniques to get the most out of specialized bibliographic resources for your discipline. This hands-on workshop will also help you discover metric indicators from the Web of Science database.


Documentary Research Methods

Instructor: Caroline Archambault, Consulting Librarian

This hands-on workshop is for students who wish to improve their documentary research skills.

Participants will work on a topic of their choice by preparing a concept plan and applying search techniques in a few databases such as Web of Science, ABI Inform Complete and Google Scholar. Some library services will also be presented.


Microsoft Excel : Data wrangling and organization in spreadsheets

Instructor: Michel Keoula, Data Analyst for the LACED, CAMS Coordinator

Although data wrangling (tidying and transforming) is best accomplished via code (with statistical analysis software like SAS, R and Python), spreadsheets are overwhelmingly used for academic teaching and prominent academic works and data management.

This workshop assumes a working knowledge of MS Office Excel. Initial topics include a quick review of intermediate level features and tools of Excel for data wrangling:  properties of List range and Tables, sorting and filtering, Pivot Tables and popular functions like VLOOKUP, RANK, and MATCH. The review will also cover the use of common text functions (CONCATENATE, UPPER, LOWER, PROPER, TRIM) to clean data, as well as date formats.

Issues related to data organization in spreadsheets are then presented. We’ll show how these MS Excel tools can be applied to untidy data according to the tidy data principle of Wickam, which is becoming more and more popular in data science. Time will also be devoted to data organization steps to take in order to protect the integrity of the data, ease analyses and avoid mistakes.


Data cleaning and preparation with SAS

The workshop will first walk the participant through the cleaning of raw bank data from the Orbis Bank Focus database. A worked example with SAS code and macros is provided and the syntax explained. Participants will have the opportunity to run the proposed code chunks in the Lab.

The second part of the workshop will be devoted to how to process untidy data according to the tidy data principle of Wickam, which is becoming more and more popular in data science.

The session will also feature how one can in some cases avoid challenging coding in a SAS if the assignment at hand is related to exploratory or early stages of a research project, so that a quick solution with Excel is more suitable. Participants are expected to have basic skills in SAS programming.


Writing Tools : EndNote

Instructor : Caroline Archambault, Consulting Librarian

Learn how to create a database using the EndNote bibliographic management software.

This hands-on workshop will help you:

  • organize your references;
  • produce bibliographies;
  • attach PDFs to your database;
  • insert bibliographic citations into your Word documents using one of the many available bibliographic style, and more.

Writing Tools : LaTeX

Instructor: Benoit Hamel, Library Technician - technical support

Presentation of the tools created by the library : hecthese document class for writing dissertations and theses at HEC Montréal; hecppt document class for creating beamer presentations with the HEC Montréal trademark. Overview of the resources available online. Brief presentation of the LaTeX workshops given by the library.


Academic Writing in English

Instructor: William Milnes

This five-week workshop is for students who wish to improve their academic writing skills in English. To be allowed to attend the workshop, students must agree to do a writing project connected to the research that they are currently conducting in their field of study.

This project, which they will complete over the course of the five week term, will consist in writing a section of text that they can incorporate either into their thesis or into an acamedic article intended for publication.

Each week, the participants will submit between two and three pages of this section of text, which the instructor will revise by providing detailed corrections and commentary, not only to indicate the errors in grammar and syntax, but also to specify the best way to avoid these errors and improve the overall quality of the writing. The weekly workshop sessions will be two hours long, and they will have two main parts:

  1. A preliminary theoretical presentation during which the instructor will explain fundamental concepts in grammar and syntax related to academic writing in English;
  2. A text revision practicum during which, under the supervision of the instructor, the participants will do academic writing exercises bases on the texts that they have submitted for their writing projects.

Intermediate R : functional programming

Instructor: Luc Villandré, Ph. D., M. Sc., postdoctoral researcher at HEC Montréal


  1. Functions
    1. Function properties: lexical scoping and embedded environments principles
    2. Creating your own functions
    3. Functions calling functions and functions as function arguments
  2. Loops
    1. Control structures: for, while, repeat
    2. Vectorized loops: *apply functions
  3. Debugging

Intermediate R : data visualisation and presentation

Instructor: Luc Villandré, Ph. D., M. Sc., postdoctoral researcher at HEC Montréal


  1. The ggplot2 library
    1. Overview of library options
    2. Graphics syntax
    3. Data layout
  2. Creating reports and presentations
    1. Rmarkdown language
    2. Creating slides with Beamer and knitR
    3. R source code integration in LaTeX documents

Prerequisites: participants must have a basic knowledge of R.

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