SSCC - Social Science Computing Cooperative Supporting Statistical Analysis for Research

2.5 Tibble structure

The tidyverse object type for a data frame is a tibble. A tibble contains set of columns, variables, that contain the values of the data. The variables of a tibble are identified by column names.

The variables that make up a data frame can be thought of as a list. See the figure below. This list of variables is the column index of the data frame. the name of the columns in the figure are name 1, name 2, and name k. The names for the columns that may exists between name 2 and name k are not given in the figure. Using the column names is the most common, and preferred, method for indexing variables. The named index values of the column index are also called the column names.

Column index of a data frame

Figure 1.11: Column index of a data frame

The figure above shows that the variables of a data frame are only connected by the index. An observation (row) is made up of the values in the same row of each of the variables that make up the tibble.