ICB3 Offers ‘Big Data’ Course for Life Sciences Industry and Academic Researchers

May 6, 2013

Registration is now open for the one-day short course “Data Sciences for the Life Sciences in a High-Performance Computing Environment,” sponsored by the University of Massachusetts Amherst Institute for Computational Biology, Biostatistics, and Bioinformatics (ICB3) to be held on Aug. 27 at the Holyoke-based Massachusetts Green High Performance Computing Center (MGHPCC).
 The course at the new state-of-the-art facility dedicated to research-oriented computing will offer a foundational curriculum in life sciences research using R,an increasingly important open source statistical programming language. Content will emphasize the use of literate programming technologies and sound analytical principlesto facilitate high-performance computing for “big data” applications. The program is intended for New England-based industry and academic researchers in the life sciences.
Participants will learn how to use powerful tools for high-performance computational research using R, such as ggplot2, GitHub, knitr, R Markdown, multicore, RStudio, and Shiny. In addition, the program will offer life science researchers from the center’s partner universities an opportunity to learn how to effectively use the MGHPCC for their own research and to connect with participants from diverse academic disciplines and industry settings.

The program is the first offering of the ICB3’s Summer Training Institute in Reproducible Research with R (STIRRR) initiative. Nicholas Reich, Assistant Professor of Biostatistics, and Andrea Foulkes, ICB3 director and Associate Professor of Biostatistics, are co-directors of STIRRR and will present the program. They plan to cover: “Principles of Reproducible Research,” “Introduction to Cluster Computing and Applications,” “Simulation and Parallel Computing with R” and other “Topics in Big Data Sciences for the Life Sciences.”
Foulkes says, “The availability of “big data” is transforming life sciences research and increasingly informing the development of tools and methods in biostatistics and bioinformatics. We are excited to present a program that supports researchers’ efforts to expand their capabilities in this realm.”
Go to http://www.umass.edu/icb3/stirrr to learn more and to register or sponsor “STIRRR 2013: Data Sciences for the Life Sciences in a High-Performance Computing Environment.”