Applied Bioinformatics – why and how?
Hello all, welcome to another blog exploring my module choice!
Those who read my last blog on Practical Project B know that I took applied bioinformatics as my module for the D block of my third semester. In this blog, I want to talk about why you should take this module and give a few tips if you do take this module.
So when I took this module, it had already undergone a few changes, and hence the initial few weeks were slow, but after that, I enjoyed my time in the module. Firstly, this module will allow you to explore bash and Linux a little – this is different from all the other options you get (usually python or R). But more than the language itself, when you explore the Unix system in general, you better understand the directory structures – something not offered in the early years of programming-related modules. And this understanding has helped clear a lot of gaps in my programming approach so far.
In addition to that, you are also given a hands-on chance to explore DNA and RNA mapping. I enjoyed this as whenever I read through a paper talking about this earlier; there was some degree of confusion regarding the methods and results section – because I did not know about the workflows that went into the process of such analysis. But during the module, I understood many things, like why we need a PCA to check if the data points are reliable. Therefore, this module is beneficial and will inform you about many tools that might be useful during your career in life sciences. And if I have convinced you to take this module, here are a few tips that might come in handy:
- Attend every workshop and ask questions. (e.g., can we replace this logic here with a loop?) This improves your logical approach to programming.
- Record all the command lines with a breakdown of what each bit means. This will help you with coursework and other organisms or parameters after the module.
- Stay on top of the assessments. This module does not have any exams, and hence coursework is everything. So plan well and get your submissions in on time!
And lastly, have fun with the mapping and analysis! Best of luckk!