Bioinformatics Major

professional at work in a bioinformatics lab

UIC’s bioengineering department is introducing a new undergraduate major in bioinformatics that is expected to welcome its first students in fall 2019.

Bioinformatics brings together computer science and biology, developing software and computational approaches to understand biological data. Bioinformatics is a form of data science that can help us to mine valuable answers from the huge amounts of medical and biological information that are out there in the world.

How will you develop a command of bioinformatics? UIC will give you a strong grasp of biology, especially cell biology, genetics, and theories of evolution. You will learn statistics, which is necessary for analyzing large datasets. And you will take computer science courses to become familiar with programming, data structures, and other key computing topics.

Bioinformatics has been a strength at UIC at the graduate level for many years. Now, undergraduate students will have the opportunity to study in this field, too.

Bioinformatics majors complete coursework in four categories:

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Nonengineering and general education courses

Nonengineering and general education courses are designed to provide you with a strong foundation in the sciences and make you a well-informed graduate in disciplines outside of engineering. This area includes fundamental courses in biology, chemistry, and math, as well as a range of “chart-your-own-path” classes in categories such as Understanding U.S. Society and Understanding the Creative Arts.

Bioengineering courses

All bioinformatics majors must take 10 bioengineering courses, which provide a grounding in the field. These courses are outlined in the curriculum flowchart for the new major.

Computer science courses

All bioinformatics majors must take six computer science courses. These courses also are outlined in the curriculum flowchart.

Selective courses

Bioengineering students earn 15 credit hours in this group, usually in the last three semesters of the program. Selective courses include a range of choices drawn from 300-level and 400-level coursework in bioengineering, computer science, electrical and computer engineering, statistics, and the College of Liberal Arts’ mathematics and computer science department.

Learn more about the bioinformatics major

To explore the bioinformatics major in greater detail, here are some key resources:

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