Neuroimaging Data Science (NIDS) Course

The introduction to NeuroImaging Data Science (NIDS) course offered by the Methods & Data facility of the Human Neuroscience Platform (HNP) of the Fondation Campus Biotech Geneva (FCBG) started in September 2020 and attracted many participants from Unige, EPFL and also organizations interested in the independent data science sub-course.

The field of neuroimaging includes scientists with a wide variety of backgrounds, most of them not trained as computer scientists although they obtain the metrics they are ultimately interested in via a complex workflow of computing operations. At the lab level this typically results in neuroimaging practitioners lacking clarity on how these metrics were generated. At the neuroimaging field level this contributes to the reproducibility crisis characterized by the difficulty of replicating other researchers’ findings, notably due to the lack of workflow standardization and code automation.

The aim of the NIDS course is threefold. First, to provide the student with the basic set of computing skills to understand the core elements of the neuroimaging workflows they are to use in their work. Second, to leverage the rich neuroimaging open software ecosystem for faster (through automation) and more insightful analyses. Third, to contribute to improve the neuroimaging community resources by adopting analysis best practice for reproducible research.
To include student backgrounds as diverse as possible no prerequisites are required. The NIDS course does aim at providing solid foundations and teaching a unified approach anchored within the Python ecosystem so that to leverage the large array of analytical tools develop for data science in general. Consequently, the course includes an independent “introduction to data science module” followed by a module providing an example of its application to neuroimaging.
The course provides 2 ECTS for the data science module and 1 ECTS for the neuroimaging module. It is full for the academic year 2020 / 2021 but will be renewed for 2021 / 2022.