Special Session on Training in Bioinformatics - SSTB 2012 (SSTB 2012 @BIOSTEC)

Venue: Vilamoura

Location: Vilamoura, Portugal

Event Date/Time: Feb 01, 2012 End Date/Time: Feb 04, 2012
Paper Submission Date: Nov 07, 2011
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Conference name: Special Session on Training in Bioinformatics - SSTB 2012

In conjunction with the 5th International Joint Conference on Biomedical Engineering Systems and Technologies - BIOSTEC 2012

Venue: Vilamoura, Algarve, Portugal

Conference date: 1-4 February, 2012


Pedro Fernandes
Instituto Gulbenkian de Ciência

Scope and Topics

For Bioinformatics, the transition to an established, free-standing scientific discipline has been a difficult one. Part of the challenge has been that, being intimately connected to the forefront of data-generation and discovery in Biology, it is constantly dealing with moving targets: the massive accumulation of data and fast rates of discovery call for new methodologies, each of which must be designed, tested, validated and deployed. Bioinformatics therefore plays catch-up with the technologies, as they develop. This situation is compounded by the difficulties in defining the curriculum. In consequence, Bioinformatics Education, multidisciplinary as much as required, is not standardised, and most of what people really need cannot be taken from the formal educational system alone. Furthermore, the field moves so quickly that it is easy to become quickly out of date, and this places a growing demand on the need for specialised training, under constant update.

In Bioinformatics, training (the acquisition of specialised skills) is provided in stand-alone courses, workshops and summer courses. Practical hands-on courses can cut time/effort by a factor of 4 to 6 compared to self-tuition. However, efficient training requires tuned methodologies. The availability of such training events is still relatively scarce. Moreover, the work and cost involved in organising them is often underestimated, so care should be taken to optimise and advertise them well.

Training clearly plays an important role. The interdisciplinary character of Bioinformatics constantly creates new needs. Many of these needs occur at different stages of the traditional research career, often during PhD or Postdoctoral projects, but also at more senior levels. As Biology continues to transition into an information-based science, the need for training at all levels will continue to grow.

In planning for Bioinformatics Training it is of paramount importance to promote good practice in all aspects, from the development of suitable educational materials and course curricula, to the choice of efficient trainers and the specification of adequate learning environments.

This special session proposes to bring together opinion-makers in the field in order to promote vigorous discussions on:

- Methodologies of Training
- Layout of Training Plans (Roadmaps)
- Deployment of Training Content using IT
- Documentation
- Planning on a Multi-country Scale

Short Papers (position paper type) are welcome on a variety of related subjects, in particular in:

- Design of Training Events
- Measurement of Training Efficiency
- Planning of Training Venues
- Use of e-Learning and b-Learning Platforms in Bioinformatics
- Subject and Trainer Selection

Authors should present original work or new reviews.

Important Dates

Paper Submission: November 7, 2011
Authors Notification: November 25, 2011
Final Paper Submission and Registration: December 9, 2011


BIOSTEC Secretariat
Address: Av. D. Manuel I, 27A, 2º esq., 2910-595 Setúbal - Portugal
Tel.: +351 265 100 033
Fax: +44 203 014 5436

e-mail: biosignals.secretariat@insticc.org