A dataframe in R is a data structure used to store tabular data in rows and columns. In this tutorial, we will look at how to get the unique values in a column in an R dataframe with the help of some examples.

## How do you get unique values from an R dataframe column?

You can use the `unique()`

function in R to get the unique values from a dataframe column. Pass the column values as an argument to the function.

The following is the syntax –

unique(dataframe[[columan_name]])

We get a vector of unique values in the given column.

## Steps to get distinct values in an R dataframe column

Let’s now look at the steps to follow to get distinct values in a dataframe column in R

### Step 1 – Create a dataframe

First, we will create a dataframe that we will be using throughout this tutorial.

# create a dataframe employees_df = data.frame( "Name"= c("Jim", "Dwight", "Angela", "Tobi", "Kevin"), "Age"= c(26, 28, 29, 32, 30), "Department"= c("Sales", "Sales", "Accounting", "HR", "Accounting") ) # display the dataframe print(employees_df)

Output:

Name Age Department 1 Jim 26 Sales 2 Dwight 28 Sales 3 Angela 29 Accounting 4 Tobi 32 HR 5 Kevin 30 Accounting

We now have a dataframe containing information about some employees working in an office. The dataframe has columns “Name”, “Age”, and “Department”.

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### Step 2 – Get the unique values in the column using `unique()`

To get distinct values in a column, pass the column values vector to the `unique()`

function as an argument. You can use the `[[]]`

notation to get a column’s values vector.

Let’s get the distinct departments from the “Department” column in the above dataframe.

# get distinct values in "Department" column dept <- unique(employees_df[["Department"]]) # display the vector print(dept)

Output:

[1] "Sales" "Accounting" "HR"

We get a vector of the unique values in the “Department” column.

Note that you can also use the column index to access a column’s values. For example, in the above dataframe, the index of the “Department” column is 3 (rows and columns in R are indexed starting from 1).

# get distinct values in "Department" column dept <- unique(employees_df[[3]]) # display the vector print(dept)

Output:

[1] "Sales" "Accounting" "HR"

We get the same result as above.

You might also be interested in –

- Create a DataFrame in R
- How to Add a Row to a Dataframe in R?
- How to Add a Column to a Dataframe in R?

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