1. Curriculum
doctors looking at computer

Course Descriptions


Our interdisciplinary faculty offers a range of courses designed to help you apply mathematical, computational, and statistical thinking to extensive biomedical data. Explore the exciting core courses within our program or view full course descriptions in the Graduate Student Handbook.

Explore Our Courses

This course provides an introduction to computer systems and scientific computing environments to enable effective use of computational and data resources. The course assumes no prior computing experience and is broken into three component modules:

  • UNIX/Linux fundamentals
  • Computer system architectures and applications in scientific computing
  • Introduction to scientific programming in Python 3

Credits: Three | Fall

This course is a computer science-intensive program intended as a survey of algorithms—that is, computational methods used to solve appropriately defined problems, and their implementation on modern scientific computing hardware.

In this course, we use Python 3 as the core programming tool.

Prerequisites required.

Credits: Three | Spring

This course is designed to train students, staff, and faculty in commonly used methods to organize, mine, and learn from data sets, especially those that are complex and large (big data). These methods include basic data concepts, classification, clustering, network inference and analysis and outlier/anomaly detection. Students in teams will also be expected to conceive a relevant project at the beginning of the course and present their approach and results at the end.

Prerequisites required
Credits: Three | Spring

Biomedical Sciences (Fall), is part one of a yearlong, six-unit course that surveys a broad and comprehensive study of basic molecular cellular and developmental biology. The course is structured as a series of lectures. Grade assessment is based on a mixture of in-class and take-home quizzes as well as one formal examination per unit.

Credits: Six | Fall

This is a yearlong, introductory core course divided into four separate units. Overall, the course will provide students with a rigorous foundation in the molecules, cells, and circuits upon which nervous system function is based, how different brain systems are engaged to drive different behaviors and the nature of brain disorders that affect identified synapses, cells, circuits, and systems. Unit 1 covers cellular and molecular neuroscience. Unit 2 covers systems neuroscience.

Credits: Six | Fall

This course is required for all first-year graduate students, following National Institutes of Health (NIH) mandates. Topics include:

  • Research misconduct
  • Experimental design and data management practices
  • Mentor and trainee responsibilities; collaborative research
  • Conflicts of interest; intellectual property
  • The protection of human subjects
  • The welfare of laboratory animals
  • Publication, authorship, and peer review
  • The grant process and fiduciary responsibility

Each session is a 45-minute lecture with 15 minutes of discussion.
Credits: Half credit | Fall

This course is required for all first-year graduate students. Topics include:

  • Experimental design
  • Rigor at the bench
  • Validation of biological and chemical reagents
  • Animal and human studies
  • The importance and design of statistics
  • Data collection, storage and open science
  • Preparation of data for publication
  • Review of NIH clearinghouse and discussion

Credits: Half credit | Spring