Nearly 100 graduate students, faculty and clinicians participated in NINR’s first Symptoms Research Methodologies Boot Camp focused exclusively on big data. The week-long training took place recently, with the interdisciplinary group of students splitting their time between the new Foundation for Advanced Education in the Sciences Academic Center and Bldg. 60.
NINR director Dr. Patricia Grady highlighted the challenges and opportunities of working with big data in her opening remarks, noting, “The promise of big data is it enables us to raise new questions and create new knowledge about old problems. The ability to tap this promise, however, hinges on our ability to develop the skills to work with large data sets in a meaningful way. Our goal with this boot camp is to introduce you to powerful big data research tools and techniques that can be used to improve patient outcomes and safety.”
The first 3 days of the NINR Big Data in Symptoms Research Boot Camp took place in the new FAES Academic Center, which was able to accommodate the nearly 100 participants.
Participants said the experience surpassed expectations. Faculty included nationally and internationally known big data experts from several fields including nursing informatics, clinical informatics and bioethics. The course quickly ramped up from foundational knowledge to case studies of how big data are being incorporated into research now. Students learned data-mining techniques for research and knowledge development and discussed some of the ethical, legal and regulatory issues in data use and reuse.
Interest in this year’s theme ran high, with registration closing out for the traditional 75 seats in less than 8 hours. An additional 25 seats were added to accommodate as many from the waiting list as possible. Those who did not make it in to the recent camp will have another opportunity—the theme of NINR’s 2015 boot camp will again be big data.
Boot camp registration typically opens in April, so mark your calendar to check the camp web page at www.ninr.nih.gov/bootcamp.