Introduction to Python for Biologists

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Start date: 2 March 2020

End date: 6 March 2020

Venue: University of Liverpool, Life Science Building, Crown St, Liverpool, L69 7ZB

Organizer: Matthew Gemmell

Instructor: Dr. Martin Jones

Registration fee: £550 

Places: 25 (allocated on a first-come-first basis, according to the capacity of the venue).


Python is a dynamic, readable language that is a popular platform for all types of bioinformatics work, from simple one-off scripts to large, complex software projects. This workshop is aimed at complete beginners and assumes no prior programming experience. It gives an overview of the language with an emphasis on practical problem-solving, using examples and exercises drawn from various aspects of bioinformatics work. 

The workshop is structured so that the parts of the language most useful for bioinformatics are introduced as early as possible, and that students can start writing plausibly-useful programs after the first few sessions. After completing the workshop, students should be in a position to (1) apply the skills they have learned to tackle problems in their own research and (2) continue their Python education in a self-directed way.

The instructor of the workshop is the Founder of Python for Biologists, Dr Martin Jones.


The workshop will take place over 5 days. Each day will consist of 2 half-day sessions, each consisting of a ~1 hour lecture followed by 2 hours of practical exercises. It is important that attendees attend each session as they will use examples and exercises that build on the materials from previous sessions. For more information and a detailed syllabus please see the following link:

Who should attend

This workshop is aimed at all researchers and technical workers with a background in biology who want to learn programming. The syllabus has been planned with complete beginners in mind.


Attendees will require a level of biological and bioinformatics background so they can appreciate the examples and exercises (i.e. they should know what a protein accession number, BLAST report, and FASTA sequence is). Attendees will require the ability to use a text editor (e.g. nano, vim, or gedit). No previous programming knowledge is required. 

Attendees will use their own laptops during the workshop. Instructions for any software to be installed will be sent out prior to the course.

If you are not sure if this course is suitable for you please do not hesitate to contact Dr Martin Jones .

For other enquiries please email the organiser, Matthew Gemmell

Registration button

Applicants will be asked to pay a registration fee of £550 by the 31st January 2020. Once your fee is paid your place on the course will be confirmed.


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