You can use the **attach() **function in R to make objects in data frames accessible without actually typing the name of the data frame.

This function uses the following basic syntax:

attach(data)

The following examples show how to use this function in different scenarios with the following data frame:

#create data frame df <- data.frame(team=c('A', 'B', 'C', 'D', 'E'), points=c(99, 90, 86, 88, 95), assists=c(33, 28, 31, 39, 34), rebounds=c(30, 28, 24, 24, 28)) #view data frame df team points assists rebounds 1 A 99 33 30 2 B 90 28 28 3 C 86 31 24 4 D 88 39 24 5 E 95 34 28

**Example 1: Use attach() to Perform Calculations**

Normally if we would like to calculate the mean, median, range, etc. of a column in a data frame, we would use the following syntax:

#calculate mean of rebounds column mean(df$rebounds) [1] 26.8 #calculate median of rebounds column median(df$rebounds) [1] 28 #calculate range of rebounds column range(df$rebounds) [1] 24 30

However, if we use **attach()** then we don’t even have to type out the data frame name to perform these calculations:

attach(df) #calculate mean of rebounds column mean(rebounds) [1] 26.8 #calculate median of rebounds column median(rebounds) [1] 28 #calculate range of rebounds column range(rebounds) [1] 24 30

By using **attach()**, we’re able to reference the column name directly and R knows which data frame we’re trying to use.

**Example 2: Use attach() to Fit Regression Models**

Normally if we would like to fit a linear regression model in R, we would use the following syntax:

#fit regression model fit <- lm(points ~ assists + rebounds, data=df) #view coefficients of regression model summary(fit)$coef Estimate Std. Error t value Pr(>|t|) (Intercept) 18.7071984 13.2030474 1.416885 0.29222633 assists 0.5194553 0.2162095 2.402555 0.13821408 rebounds 2.0802529 0.3273034 6.355733 0.02387244

However, if we use** attach() **then we don’t even have to use the **data** argument within the **lm()** function to fit the regression model:

#fit regression model fit <- lm(points ~ assists + rebounds) #view coefficients of regression model summary(fit)$coef Estimate Std. Error t value Pr(>|t|) (Intercept) 18.7071984 13.2030474 1.416885 0.29222633 assists 0.5194553 0.2162095 2.402555 0.13821408 rebounds 2.0802529 0.3273034 6.355733 0.02387244

Notice that the regression results are the exact same.

**Bonus: Use detach() and search()**

You can use the **search()** function to display all of the objects that are attached in the current R environment:

#show all attached objects search() [1] ".GlobalEnv" "df" "package:stats" [4] "package:graphics" "package:grDevices" "package:utils" [7] "package:datasets" "package:methods" "Autoloads" [10] "package:base"

And you can use the **detach()** function to detach an object that is currently detached:

#detach data frame detach(df)

**Additional Resources**

The following tutorials explain how to perform other common tasks in R:

How to Clear the Environment in R

How to Clear All Plots in RStudio

How to Print Multiple Variables on the Same Line in R