Bioinformatics Algorithms CSE 181 @ UCSD Winter 2024

Journey to the frontier of computational biology. Master the computational approaches that have revolutionized the modern study of life science.
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About this course

How do we sequence genomes and compare them? What's the genetic basis behind diseases? How can we build an evolutionary Tree of Life?

Dive into this fully interactive textbook and unearth the answers to these pivotal questions in contemporary biology, questions that are inextricable from fundamental algorithms needed to resolve them.

Throughout this course, you will be presented with numerous algorithmic challenges that serve as opportunities for you to put theory into practice, by implementing the bioinformatics algorithms that you will encounter. And you can code your solutions in the programming language of your choice, and they'll be automatically graded!

Additionally, for those who prefer traditional formats, a non-interactive version of this textbook, along with its print companion and lecture videos, can be accessed at

We hope you get a kick out of our whimsical introductory course video! In the ever-evolving Wild West of bioinformatics, where breakthroughs happen daily, who better to guide you through than the sheriff of bioinformatics and his trusty deputy? Saddle up and join us, partner!

Whom this course is for

Learners who are interested in seeing the fundamental algorithms that have made biology into a computational discipline.

Initial requirements

Learners should be good technical thinkers and have a strong introductory knowledge of programming. No biological background is necessary!

Meet the Instructors

How you will learn

The course is organized into chapters, with each chapter dedicated to a unique biological question, such as "How do we assemble gneomes?" or "Which animal gave us SARS?".

Within every chapter, we embark on a deep exploration of the specific algorithms essential for addressing the presented question. These algorithms typically represent a single computational paradigm, such as graph algorithms or dynamic programming.

To ensure a comprehensive learning experience, the course intertwines numerous exercises to validate learner understanding. Additionally, automatically graded coding challenges are embedded within the text, providing learners with a timely opportunity to implement the algorithms that they encounter.

Course content




What you will get

  • The opportunity to engage with just-in-time exercises woven seamlessly into our best-selling text that has reached hundreds of thousands of learners.
  • An appreciation for the synergy between biology and computer science, culminating in a captivating interdisciplinary domain.
  • A profound understanding of the foundational algorithms underpinning computational biology.
  • The chance to bring these algorithms to life through automatically graded coding challenges, all in the programming language of your choice.
  • A certificate of completion from Cogniterra.
  • The enduring admiration of Phillip and Pavel, your dedicated course instructors.


Price: $69.95
You've tried this course and realized it's not for you? That's fine, we will pay you back within 30 days from the purchase.

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Price: $69.95