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Africa Data Challenge: TReND in Africa launches bioinformatics course

In April, we launched the two winning projects from the Africa Data Challenge, a competition that invited people around the world to pitch their ideas for data-driven projects on the continent. The two winners had very different projects: Mary Olushoga of the AWP Network suggested a training course that would equip Nigerian female farmers with training and opportunities to support their business growth and development. TReND in Africa, on the other hand, presented a project that seeks to equip African researchers with a detailed understanding of biology, bioinformatics, and the analytical skills required to study genomics datasets.

Fast-forward to October, and TReND in Africa is accepting applications for their 2015 “Bioinformatics approaches for next generation sequencing analysis” school. organised by Dr. Jelena Aleksic, TReND in Africa, and Dr. Ben Kulohoma, icipe, Kenya, the course will take place over six days from November 30th until December 5th, 2015, at the International Centre for Insect Physiology and Ecology (icipe), Nairobi, Kenya. It seeks to instruct African research scientists in a range of bioinformatics analysis techniques to deal with Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) data, including programming and analysis best practices, as well as tools for data visualisation and analysis.

African research scientists from any country in sub-Saharan Africa who hold a Master’s or PhD degree, or who are currently enrolled for a Master’s or PhD degree, with an interest in bioinformatics, are encouraged to apply for the course.

During the course, morning lectures will cover the theory of experimental design, different sequencing datasets and how to deal with them, as well as a range of applications of NGS technology. Afternoons will focus on programming practicals where students will build their skills in using R and Unix to undertake bioinformatics analysis. Students will also get to work in small groups with instructors to undertake a specialised project, and get crucial hands-on analysis time.

To learn more, please read visit the TReND in Africa website or course page. Applications close 16th October, 2015 (11:59 p.m. CET).

Photo: TReND in Africa, 2014.

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