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This page contains some tips for getting started with the blavaan package.


blavaan can be installed from CRAN in the usual way:


In some situations, you may wish to install blavaan from GitHub. The GitHub version sometimes contains bug fixes that are not yet on CRAN, though it can also be less stable. To install from GitHub, use the following command.

remotes::install_github("ecmerkle/blavaan", INSTALL_opts = "--no-multiarch")

This command requires that your system can compile Stan models, which is not guaranteed if you usually install blavaan from CRAN. If you are having trouble, it may help to look at the RStan Getting Started page.

Commands and Syntax

The blavaan package depends on the lavaan package for model specification and for some computations. This means that, if you already know lavaan, then you should already be able to do many things in blavaan. In particular, many blavaan commands add the letter “b” to the start of the lavaan command. For example, sem() becomes bsem(), and lavInspect() becomes blavInspect(). It is also sometimes possible to use a lavaan command on a blavaan object, though the results may not always be what you expect.

With these details in mind, look at the lavaan tutorial for many examples of models. You can translate many of those examples to blavaan by adding a “b” to the start of the commands. And look at the other pages here, to learn about the additional blavaan arguments that are specific to Bayesian methods.