This was a lot of work and rewarding to complete. The final project was challenging and the forum contributors helped a lot in pointing out good resources or strategies they had used.
Great Course if you are interested in dissecting the genome. Galaxy opens up this invisible world and allows even us little people to explore the world once reserved to only Academia.
By Lars L R•
Overall, this was one of the worst courses I have ever taken. The course is all about pushing buttons. "Why should I push this button and not that? And what will it do?" you ask – well, this course will certainly not answer that! For example, the instructor stresses the importance of pushing the QC buttons to get a report of the quality of the data, but you are not told how to read the output nor what to do if something is alarming – not even what would be an alarming output. And then, for the rest of the course the QC reports are ignored.
In the end you have to do an exam which is completely incomprehensible – you need to analyze a type of data that has not been introduced at all in the specialization, and you have to do it using tools and methodology in Galaxy that has never been introduced in the instructions. The questions you are asked are then of course about concepts that haven't been introduced in the specialization either, and they are naturally formulated using non-standard terminology which makes googling difficult. I had to spent at least 30 hours getting Galaxy to work and reading instructions manuals for a large variety of different tools to make a sensible analysis. In the end the submission is reviewed by the other students of the course who are also left entirely clueless about what to do and how to do it, and thus have no idea whether to grade the individual parts of the assignment as correct or wrong. The grades are then simply based on coin flips.
I work in research and work alongside many bioinformatics PhDs. When asking them about Galaxy they frown and say "Oh? That horrible tool you had to use in your undergraduate studies? Yeah, well no one uses that." ...Well, at least the quality of their courses must have been infinitely higher than this one since they did not decide to change their line of study immediately after their courses...
For future students in this specialization, I really hope that this course will be removed and replaced by something that is not a complete waste of time.
By Marc-Michel W•
There is far less information provided in the course content to adequately prepare students to carry out the project at the end of week four. The lectures are very low level and introductory but the course project is in-depth and requires a lot of prior knowledge.
By Lauren B•
The programs on used in the lecture videos have all been deprecated and there was not enough information provided in the lectures to be able to tackle the final project.
By Shir H•
this course is so bad that if you are paying for it its practically a scam. honestly, i have no idea how this course has such a high rating, since you on every other site its rating is around 1-2 start with horrible reviews..
i think you should only take this course if you are after the certificate of the specialization, otherwise, there are far (far far!) better information out there on how and why to use galaxy.
i hope someone at coursera/hopkins will read this - i highly recommend you to withdrawal this course and fix it.. because its making you look very bad.
By Venus O•
Seems like Galaxy is far updated after the preparation of the course material. A refreshment on them might be useful. It is not essential but this discrepancy increased the time I had to spend on the course.
By Bryan G•
The course itself is very well taught, although the information is rudimentary relative to the final project. The main reason I am giving the course 2 stars is because the lectures do not prepare the learner for the final project (although it does provide most of the basics for training yourself), and the peer review of the final project lacks direction. For example we are expected to grade our peers based on whether their answers are correct, without having any guidance of what the correct answer actually is.
By Arkan A•
The course content covers the very basics and is unfortunately not technical enough for you to actually apply to real data analysis. In addition the class project at the end is much more demanding than what was covered by the materials. Finally the grading of the class project is peer-based which is fine but no answers or guidance are provided which leads to "blind leading the blind" scenario. In my case my project was correctly done but i received a failing grade because my "peer" marked the assignment incorrectly. I merely resubmitted the exact same result and got lucky with a competent "peer" who gave me the pass i deserved the first time around.
Overall, needs more detail and better implementation.
By Anna A•
This course is frustrating, there is not near enough information in the lectures to do the final assignment. There’s also NO support from staff, just a former student volunteering. A total disappointment.
By Lauren M•
While I did learn a good amount, I felt completely unprepared for the course project. Most tools needed are outdated and not well supported. Please update this course or at least add resources for extra reading/ explanations on how/why to run a tool with a given data set. We hadnt even seen the data file type needed that we need to generate for the project, let alone know how to read it well.
Was also not very excited about peer reviewed aspect of the course project, when it seems like very few of us know what we're doing anyway. It's hardly fair to expect us to grade others work when we barely know how to get necessary info out of a data set as is.
By Dr K R•
worst ever course on coursera. This entire specialization on data sciences for genomics is a horribly done effort with no co-ordination, inadequate theory, poorly thought out examples and assignments totally different from what is taught
By Gilson B d J•
You lacked more details about the environment and the terms used. It was super complicated to draw conclusions in the final project due to lack of information in the course.The Galaxy is very powerful, provides fantastic features, I think it would be interesting to extend the duration and create more in-depth materials.
By Katarzyna M•
The course was ok until the final project. The videos should cover more the topic that are needed to solve the project or more reading should be provided.
By Jumanah F N B•
The course does not teach enough to be able to complete the final assignment. There should be more videos to explain how to use the tools and with which parameters in the final assignment, or there should be a simpler final assignment.
By Jason M•
var rating = 3;
rating += 1; // learn by doing
rating -= 2; // learning deprecated and thus useless material
rating -= 1; // chaotic presentation and failure to explain any concepts deeply
By Ji E S•
Course itself was good, but needs some updates. The Galaxy web tools were updated, but the course video still demonstrates using older version of Galaxy, so it's hard to find and follow the lecture, especially the last lecture of week3 and most part of week4. The course itself is not sufficient to complete last peer review project, need to study yourself after the course to complete the project. Overall good course to start, but needs updates since the techniques of the fields, both data science and genomics, is changing very quickly.
By Yunfei D•
The course material is introductory. The final exam is confusing with very vague instruction.
By Felipe B•
It is fast-paced. The teacher is good. The final exam is out of proportion to what was taught in class. There is minimal guidance on the task, which is frustrating for those trying to take the course seriously and thoroughly.
By Haymanti S•
My assignment has not been peer reviewed for a while now. The course is not as explanatory as the other courses in the specializations. Honestly a bit disappointing.
1 star is very enough!
By Steve S•
Great course! Could divide the learning experience into two parts. Genomics and IT. A lot was demanded from the genomics side that personally, I supplemented with uTube presentations. From the IT side I soon learned that once the sequencing had been performed, it was a big data problem of fuzzy pattern matching for which you had a lot of software primitives (Galaxy) tied together by workflows. Again, uTube helped to solidify this concept. The class approach while teaching a lot, mostly relied on independent research in order to be successful in a directed study endeavor.
By Inmaculada M•
Good course to learn how to use Galaxy. Only one problem, it was difficult to perform the final project wiht the knowledge we got from the course. At the end I didn't know if the workflow I used was adequate.
By Ke Z•
I learned a lot through the course, but the final project really makes this course pathetic. The peer-review system is a mess. I do have some molecular biology background but I still feel that understanding the requirements for the project is challenging, I can imagine how confusing it could be for students without biology background.
By Jack G•
The instruction is great. However, the assignment at the end of the course is fairly unrelated to what you are taught so it is very hard to do to.
By Sandra P F P•
It was very hard to follow specially because most of the videos use an older version of the program. Honestly, I did not learn much here.
By Robert D•
Class is incredibly out of date. Good general information, but needs to be updated to reflect current version of Galaxy.