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Learner Reviews & Feedback for Finding Hidden Messages in DNA (Bioinformatics I) by University of California San Diego

823 ratings
192 reviews

About the Course

Named a top 50 MOOC of all time by Class Central! This course begins a series of classes illustrating the power of computing in modern biology. Please join us on the frontier of bioinformatics to look for hidden messages in DNA without ever needing to put on a lab coat. In the first half of the course, we investigate DNA replication, and ask the question, where in the genome does DNA replication begin? We will see that we can answer this question for many bacteria using only some straightforward algorithms to look for hidden messages in the genome. In the second half of the course, we examine a different biological question, when we ask which DNA patterns play the role of molecular clocks. The cells in your body manage to maintain a circadian rhythm, but how is this achieved on the level of DNA? Once again, we will see that by knowing which hidden messages to look for, we can start to understand the amazingly complex language of DNA. Perhaps surprisingly, we will apply randomized algorithms, which roll dice and flip coins in order to solve problems. Finally, you will get your hands dirty and apply existing software tools to find recurring biological motifs within genes that are responsible for helping Mycobacterium tuberculosis go "dormant" within a host for many years before causing an active infection....

Top reviews

Jul 29, 2018

This course is very very good. Challenging at times. It does not hold your hand at all times and sometimes requires research to solve some of the problems, but I like the community and the approach.

Apr 6, 2020

Excellent introduction to bioinformatics. They put a lot of heart and thought into the design of the course. I will continue to use the concepts I've learned in and out of bioinformatics.

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126 - 150 of 188 Reviews for Finding Hidden Messages in DNA (Bioinformatics I)

By Tuan N

Feb 1, 2021

As a graduate student with background in molecular biology, I find the computational challenging enough, and there is some new insights in biology as well. However, some of the lectures of week 3 and week 4 are very confusing.

By Michael O

Jun 29, 2016

Very nice course and information, but backend could be more polished. Many tasks (expecially about randomized algorithms) could fail even if you do 100% right. And very little debug information provided.

By Christiane A

Mar 6, 2017

Fascinating subject where informatics and biology come together . By taking these courses you get a deep understanding of how research results are obtained by multidisciplinary teams.

By Dhivyaprakash N

Sep 26, 2020

It was very tough and worth attempting it because I have given many numbers of attempts in all the quizzes but at every attempt, I could rectify my mistakes.

By Estefania E

Jun 28, 2017

A good course and introduction. Some of the computer graded homework assignments need better explanations for the desired result set, to avoid frustration.

By Немытько В А

Feb 8, 2021

Основной курс находится на Stepik, здесь же непродолжительные лекции которые полностью повторяются и раскрываются на Stepik что немного странно.

By Geoff R

Mar 24, 2021

After completing the entire course, I feel like the majority of it was explained well. The assignments are fair and the content is interesting.

By Haeuk

Mar 14, 2021

The content itself is interesting and challenging enough. However, the wordings need improvements. Some parts were difficult to understand.

By Igor K

Aug 18, 2017

Very interesting lectures and practical assignments. But in my opinion the capstone project is not too interesting for "computer" people.


May 1, 2020

The course was great. I would recommend it to anyone interested. There are a few things to fix, especially on the external toolkit.

By Shabnam S

May 14, 2020

Some of the Stepik material needs to be updated and put in more clear and simpler language. Otherwise, great learning curve!


Jun 8, 2020

The programming assignments could have been described more appropriately otherwise the course material was quite great.

By Juana S L

Apr 22, 2018

I couldn't finish successfully last question but I don't know why. I believe I understand the meaning of the question

By Cagdas U

Jan 4, 2019

The answers are stale. MEME tool results don't match what they expect. It takes a while to find students to review.

By Kenny S

Apr 11, 2021

the course is great, extermely informative and educational, just takes a lot of time to grok all the information

By Максим

Mar 6, 2017

Есть недоработки, но вместе с комментариями других учащихся, можно разобраться в сути заданий

By Nghia L

Aug 15, 2020

Some parts are written in a way that is very hard to understand, but overall good course

By TeriLynn S

Jul 9, 2018

The two platform format is quite complex. But the material is excellent!

By Jack C

Jan 5, 2020

The course was very informative, but at points it was very confusing.

By Aditya B

Aug 5, 2016

Very well explained for both biologists and computer scientists.

By 정문필

May 7, 2020

Best lecture to dive into Bioinformatics first time!

By Iqra A

Aug 3, 2020

Not made for a biologist but for a programming man.

By Shiv H

Sep 28, 2018

Good Course but at times difficult to understand.

By Nikhil Y

Apr 19, 2020

it was an amazing course!!

By Meng Z

Mar 4, 2019

The course is great!