May 5, 2014 · git tutorial

Git and GitHub videos for beginners

Today begins the second session of Coursera's Data Science Specialization, a series of nine month-long courses covering the concepts and tools used throughout the data science pipeline. The courses are being taught by three professors in Biostatistics from Johns Hopkins University: Roger Peng and Jeff Leek, editors of the Simply Statistics blog, and Brian Caffo.

Last month, I took the Data Scientist's Toolbox course as well as the Getting and Cleaning Data course. By far, the most challenging material from the Toolbox course was learning the basics of Git and GitHub, generating hundreds (if not thousands) of questions in the forums. Having some experience in Git and GitHub, I was active in the forums answering students' questions, and was invited to be a "Community TA" for this second session of the Data Scientist's Toolbox.

I know how frustrating it can be to struggle with this material, especially because few Git resources are truly focused on teaching Git to beginners, and even fewer thoroughly cover the interaction between Git and GitHub. So last week, I recorded a series of short videos about how to get started with Git and GitHub, taught in a way that would have helped me when I was getting started.

You can watch the entire series in this YouTube playlist. There are 11 videos which total 36 minutes, and all are available in HD in case you have trouble reading the on-screen text. Each video's description contains helpful links and the full transcript. Here are links to the individual videos:

  1. What is the difference between Git and GitHub?
  2. Setting up Git and GitHub
  3. Navigating a GitHub Repository - Part 1
  4. Navigating a GitHub Repository - Part 2
  5. Forking a GitHub Repository
  6. Creating a New GitHub Repository
  7. Copying a GitHub Repository to Your Local Computer
  8. Committing Changes in Git and Pushing to a GitHub Repository
  9. Syncing Your GitHub Fork
  10. Additional Resources for Learning Git and GitHub
  11. Troubleshooting: Updates Rejected When Pushing to GitHub

For further reading, I also have four blog posts relevant to the video series:

If you'd like me to record additional videos for this series, please let me know what topics would be helpful. If you enjoyed these videos, feel free to subscribe to my YouTube channel to be notified when I release other data science-related videos.

I welcome your questions and comments!

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