Boot Camp in Quantitative Methods


May/June 2012



Co-Directors: Mike Springer and Rick Born

(michael_springer[at], 432-7391; rborn[at], 432-1307)


Dates: Fri., May 25                 9am to 5pm

            Tues., May 29              9am to 5pm

            Wed., May 30              noon to 5pm

            Mon., June 4                9am to 5pm

            Tues., June 5                noon to 5pm


Location: TMEC, Rm. 227


Teaching Fellows: Paul Cowgill (, Renan Escalante Chong (, Yao Zhizhong (, Kishore Mosaliganti (, Keisuke Ishihara (, Martin Wuehr (, Yonatan Savir (, Jeremy Purvis (, Miriam Ginzberg (, Bo Hua (, Alejandro Granados Castro (, Jue Wang (, Rob Yang (


Mission: The goals of this camp are to introduce you to programming in the MATLAB environment and to show you the power this provides for analyzing data and for gaining intuition about the behavior of complex systems through the use of numerical simulations. The first two days will cover basics of programming intermixed with some image analysis and statistical methods for analyzing data. The third day will focus on statistics. The fourth day will focus on image analysis and quantitative approaches. The final day will cover more practical aspects of importing real data sets into MATLAB and best practices for organizing data analysis. The course assumes no knowledge of programming, statistics, image analysis, or modeling. The object is to give people a set of practical tools that they can use towards any problem they want to address and to go through examples which both reinforce the different programming concepts and give hands on examples of data processing.


PREREQUISITE: Must be able to turn on a computer and use a keyboard and mouse.


NOTE: You will need to bring to the first class a laptop computer with MATLAB installed. The exact version doesn't matter as long as it is 2010b or later.  MATLAB can be downloaded for free via either 1) an eCommons account on the HMS Wiki, or 2) an FAS account here.


Syllabus (html)

Syllabus (pdf)




Day 1, Day 2, Statistics, Image Processing, Day 5, Bioinformatics Exercise, Neuroscience Tutorials


MATLAB Programming Style Guidelines: Richard Johnson's guide on how to name variables, organize files and lay out your code so that it can be easily understood, debugged and modified by you and others.