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How to access the items of a vector in R

Onyejiaku Theophilus Chidalu

Overview

A vector in R is simply a list of data type items.

The items of a vector are combined using the c() function. The c() function takes the lists of items we want in our vector object as its parameter.

Let’s create a vector.

Code example

# Vector of strings
my_vector1 <- c("pear", "cherry", "lemon")

# vector of numbers
my_vector2 <- c(1, 2, 3, 4, 5)

# Printing the vectors
my_vector1
my_vector2
Creating a vector in R

Code explanation

  • Line 2: We create a vector my_vector1 containing string values or items.

  • Line 5: We create another vector, my_vector2, containing numerical values or items.

  • Lines 8 & 9: We print the two vectors we create.

Accessing the items of a vector

To access the items of a vector, we refer to its index number inside the brackets []. In R, the first item of a vector has its index as 1, the second has its index as 2, and so on.

In the code below, we want to access the items of a vector:

Code example

# creating a vector
my_vector <- c("pear", "cherry", "lemon")

# accessing the first item of the vector object
my_vector[1]

# accessing the second item of the vector object
my_vector[2]
Accessing the elements of a vector

Code explanation

We can see that we could access the vector my_vector items by simply referring to the index number of the specific item inside brackets [].

Accessing multiple items of a vector

We can also access multiple items of a vector by referring to their different index numbers or the position with the c() function.

Code example

# creating a vector
my_vector <- c("pear", "cherry", "lemon")

# accessing the first and third items of the vector using the c() functon 
my_vector[c(1, 3)]
Accessing multiple items of a vector

RELATED TAGS

vector
item of vector
r
communitycreator

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Onyejiaku Theophilus Chidalu
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