GENE30040 Introduction to Programming for Biologists

Academic Year 2019/2020

This module will introduce fundamental topics in computer programming to students with no prior programming experience. It is designed for biology students with an interest in computational data analysis/bioinformatics. The course will introduce the concept of variables, types and basic data structures. Program structure including flow control, conditional execution and file input/output will be covered. Example problems based on biological data will be used. The course will consist of lectures, tutorials and practical programming sessions. There will be a strong emphasis on the practical elements of writing code.

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Curricular information is subject to change

Learning Outcomes:

How to write programs to solve some basic biological questions including interrogating and manipulating biological data. How to interact with the operating system and compile code. Gain an understanding of why computer programming is important in biology.

Student Effort Hours: 
Student Effort Type Hours




Computer Aided Lab


Autonomous Student Learning




Approaches to Teaching and Learning:
Lectures; hands-on coding practice in task-based practicals; tutorials 
Requirements, Exclusions and Recommendations
Learning Requirements:

Students must be enrolled in a biology programme.

Learning Exclusions:

Students must not have taken modules in computer programming.

Module Requisites and Incompatibles
Additional Information:
Must be enrolled in a biology programme

COMP10010 - Introduction to Programming I, COMP1001J - Intro to Programming 1, COMP10020 - Introduction to Programming II, COMP1002J - Intro to Programming 2, COMP10060 - Computer Sci for Engineers I, MIS10080 - Programming for Bus Analytics, MIS20050 - Prog for Bus Analytics II, MIS20080 - Introduction to Programming

Assessment Strategy  
Description Timing Open Book Exam Component Scale Must Pass Component % of Final Grade
Class Test: The Class Test takes place in the final practical session of the trimester. Part 1 is a series of short questions. Part 2 is a short programming task.
Each part carries equal weight.
2 hour End of Trimester Exam n/a Graded No


Continuous Assessment: A number of programming tasks taken through the trimester. Throughout the Trimester n/a Graded No


Carry forward of passed components
Resit In Terminal Exam
Summer No
Please see Student Jargon Buster for more information about remediation types and timing. 
Feedback Strategy/Strategies

• Feedback individually to students, post-assessment

How will my Feedback be Delivered?

Not yet recorded.

Name Role
Mr Sean Bergin Tutor
Ms Ciara Lynch Tutor
Mr Kilian Murphy Tutor
Mr Patrick Timmons Tutor
Timetabling information is displayed only for guidance purposes, relates to the current Academic Year only and is subject to change.  
Lecture Offering 1 Week(s) - Spring: All Weeks Mon 17:00 - 17:50
Practical Offering 1 Week(s) - Spring: All Weeks Tues 16:00 - 17:50
Lecture Offering 1 Week(s) - Spring: All Weeks Wed 12:00 - 12:50
Lecture Offering 2 Week(s) - Spring: All Weeks Mon 17:00 - 17:50
Practical Offering 2 Week(s) - Spring: All Weeks Tues 16:00 - 17:50
Lecture Offering 2 Week(s) - 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 30 Wed 13:00 - 13:50