EN 600.340: a new (in Spring 2016) 300-level course in Biomedical Engineering and Computer Science

(Note: the course number changed in 2018 to EN 601.350)

Course title: Introduction to Genomic Research (3 credits)
Course number: EN 600.340
Professor: Steven Salzberg
Meeting times: Tuesdays and Thursdays, 3:00pm - 4:15pm
Meeting location: Homewood Campus, Hodson 311
Textbook: Bioinformatics Algorithms: An Active Learning Approach, Volume I, by Phillip Compeau and Pavel Pevzner (buy it on Amazon.com)

NOTE: This course is cross-listed in both Computer Science and Biomedical Engineering. Students in both majors will receive credit for this course as part of the overall requirements for either major.

Course description:
This course will use a project-based approach to introduce undergraduates to research in computational biology and genomics. During the semester, students will take a series of large data sets, all derived from recent research, and learn all the computational steps required to convert raw data into a polished analysis. Data challenges might include the DNA sequences from a bacterial genome project, the RNA sequences from an experiment to measure gene expression, the DNA from a human microbiome sequencing experiment, and others. Topics may vary from year to year. In addition to computational data analysis, students will learn to do critical reading of the scientific literature by reading high-profile research papers that generated groundbreaking or controversial results.

Prerequisites: knowledge of the Unix operating system and programming expertise in a language such as Perl or Python.