New Course: Bioinformatics for Beginners

UCSD’s Computer Sciences and Engineering department is offering a new course this fall, CSE 180, Bioinformatics for Beginners: Computational Methods in Biological Big Data. Biology majors who take the course and meet the residency requirement may have the course apply as an upper division elective.

The course description for CSE 180 is as follows:

Technological advances in the last couple of decades have pushed the frontiers of the biological sciences extremely rapidly. Seemingly overnight, the field of biology has transitioned to a state where experiments yield massive data sets that are impossible to parse without the aid of computers. In this course, we will cover various computational techniques used to analyze these datasets. By the end of this course, you will be able to:

● Write Python programs to solve various tasks you may encounter
○ Formulate a formal computational problem from an informal biological problem
○ Develop algorithms for solving computational problems
○ Implement the algorithmic solution in Python
○ Use abstractions such as variables and functions to manage complexity in your programs
○ Find and fix errors in programs that you or someone else has written

● Use the Unix Command Line
● Perform de novo genome assembly and annotation
● Perform gene expression analysis using RNA sequencing data
● Perform variant calling (and analyze the resulting variants) using genome sequencing data