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Biology Meets Programming Bioinformatics for Beginners

Course Summary

Are you interested in learning how to program (in Python) within a scientific setting? This course will cover algorithms for solving various biological problems along with a handful of programming challenges helping you implement these algorithms in Python. It offers a gentler-paced alternative to the first course in our Bioinformatics Specializ

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    Course Syllabus

    The course will be based around the following biological questions, with the algorithmic ideas that we will use to solve them in parentheses:

    • Where Does DNA Replication Begin? (Algorithmic Warm-up)
    • Which DNA Patterns Act As Molecular Clocks? (Greedy and Randomized Algorithms)

    Some of these topics will require you to complete coding challenges in order to implement bioinformatics algorithms, followed by a comprehension quiz at the end of the topic.  Other topics will carry lighter workloads and consist primarily of lecture videos and short quizzes.

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    Recommended Background

    No background is required beyond an enthusiasm for biology and a willingness to immerse oneself in learning how to program. Students who have never programmed before should be able to approach this course.

    If you are an advanced programmer, we recommend that you take the "Hacker Track" in the  Bioinformatics Specialization.

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    Course Format

    The primary content for the course is an interactive textbook that will help you code in Python as you learn about the course material.

    We will also provide optional lecture videos accompanying the text for those interested.

Course Fee:

Course Type:


Course Status:



1 - 4 hours / week

This course is listed under Open Source , Development & Implementations and Data & Information Management Community

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