GHGA and EMBL Bio-IT offered "FAIR in (biological) practice" course

Data management and FAIR principles have become highly relevant in the natural science research field and beyond. Many institutions require their researchers (including PhD students and Postdocs) to have data management (RDM) plans. Similarly, funding agencies nowadays often ask for RDM plans to be completed in proposals before awarding grants. Therefore, training materials and courses educating on and  sensitising  the next generation of researchers to these topics is invaluable. This is also a topic GHGA feels passionate about.  

During the week of June 30th, GHGA offered its first multi-day training opportunity in collaboration with EMBL Bio-IT. The course was titled “FAIR in (biological) practice” and covered topics like FAIR principles, open science, version control, and reproducible data analysis workflows for biological data. The material was based on the Software Carpentries course with the same title, which is still in development and allowed our teachers to give feedback to the course developers about the materials.

To open the course for a wider audience, the course was held virtually but included smaller breakout sessions to encourage discussion in smaller groups. The course material consisted of a mix of lectures and hands-on exercises using different tools and platforms which can help with FAIR compliance. The course was aimed at researchers working in a laboratory setting but also needing to handle large amounts of data. Even though some programming was discussed, no prior coding knowledge was required.

We were excited by the turnout of participants, which included researchers and students of many different levels and backgrounds. Their enthusiasm for the subject as well as their vivid discussions around the covered topics made for a very engaging course.

We thank all participants as well as the EMBL Bio-IT teaching team and the guest lecturers for the collaboration on this course and we’re looking forward to many more GHGA training opportunities to come.

The talks and materials will be made available as soon as possible and linked here.