Evolutionary Bioinformatics Education: A BioQUEST Curriculum Consortium Approach
Clark Atlanta University
May 14, 2003 - May 16, 2003
This course will be offered at the
Chautauqua Satellite at Clark Atlanta University in the Science Center. Applications are sent to CBU and reduced hotel rates
may be arranged through CBU before a designated cut-off date.
Audience: Biologists who are interested in implementing
across their biology curriculum by incorporating bioinformatics into a variety of courses, using a
problem-solving approach, and who enjoy collaborative
learning such as has been developed and diffused by the BioQUEST
Mathematicians and computer scientists who are already involved in teaching bioinformatics
or computational molecular biology are welcome to come and interact with biologists so that they can develop a better idea of
what questions biologists outside of genomics have with respect to teaching and learning elements of bioinformatics
appropriate to their sub-discipline of biology. Bioinformatics is viewed here as an interdisciplinary field that greatly
benefits from collaborators coming from disparate backgrounds.
Overview: The short course will focus on several
different ways that the analysis of molecular data is being applied to solve current biological problems in areas such as
medicine, agriculture, conservation, and
It will address the relationships between evolutionary theory and
the analysis of molecular sequence and structure data. A wide range of sub-disciplines that use bioinformatic analysis will be
drawn upon. The focus will be on learning about the causal bases for bioinformatic analyses along with a philosophy of
education: problem posing, problem-solving, and peer review/publication (BioQUEST‚s three P‚s).
The short course
serves several purposes:
* As a learning resource for faculty across the biological sciences who are interested in
developing their understanding of the biological (as compared to the computational or mathematical) aspects of bioinformatic
* As a forum for undergraduate teachers of bioinformatics to collaborate in the development of biology or
bioinformatics courses and/or curricula.
* As an opportunity for developing undergraduate research programs in
The laboratory sessions deal with medical, cell biology, and conservation examples. The lectures relate
to: Evolutionary Bioinformatics: Orthology, Paralogy, Xenology, Phylogenetic Probes and Phylogenetic rofiling; BioQUEST‚s
Curricular Philosophy: Problem Posing, Problem Solving and Peer Review /Publication: and, Theoretical, mathematical and
computational aspects that complicate bioinformatics: homoplasies, computational complexity, numerous tree topologies, scoring
multiple sequence alignments, long branch attraction problems, rate variations.
The discussions focus on how to analyze
data, how to implement bioinformatics investigations across the curriculum, and how to develop sustained
For College teachers of: biology, health science, agriculture, and bioinformatics.
interest in teaching biology using bioinformatics.
Dr. Jungck and Dr. Donovan have offered numerous workshops in
bioinformatics for faculty across the U.S. and abroad and provide a website wherein they
share a variety of curricular
materials developed in collaboration with professors across the nation. They are Editor and Co-Editor of The BioQUEST
Library. Professor Jungck has worked in mathematical-molecular evolution
for thirty-five years and is the Mead Chair of
the Sciences at Beloit College, a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and Chair
Education Section of the Society for Mathematical Biology Professor. Donovan is an Assistant Professor of Biology at Beloit
College, Director of
BioQUEST's education dissemination initiative, and Chair of the Education Section of the Society for
the Study of Evolution. Additional presenters:
Theresa Johnson and Tony Weisstein, also both part of the BioQUEST
Theresa Johnson coordinates the collaboratory tools for the BEDROCK bioinformatics education
project. Tony Weisstein's research focuses on evolutionary genetics models and mathematical
BioQUEST Staff Attending: