Courses for Spring 2013 (I): Advanced NMR spectroscopy

Course registration for Spring 2013 has opened. I asked faculty to share details about new (and old) exciting and different courses being offered this spring.

Tom Pochapsky (Chemistry) writes:
Product Details

We are offering our CHEM 146 “Advanced NMR spectroscopy” course again in the spring, appropriate for grads and advanced undergrads in physics, chem, biochem, biophysics.   Pre-reqs are Physics 10 or equivalent, Math 10 or equivalent.   There is a laboratory component this year (using the 800), intro to theory of NMR and practical applications.  The text for the course is our book [ed.: NMR for Physical and Biological Scientists (Thomas Pochapsky and Susan Sondej Pochapsky, authors)], now available as an e-book.


Teaching awards for Hickey & Thomas

Professor of Computer Science Tim Hickey and Assistant Professor of Chemistry Christine Thomas are among the 2012 winners of major Brandeis teaching awards.  Hickey won the Lerman-Neubauer ’69 Prize for Excellence in Teaching and Mentoring. Thomas received the Michael L. Walzer ’56 Award for Teaching.

Among the comments from student nominators:

When I first met Professor Hickey in the fall of my first year during my COSI 2A class, he was incredibly knowledgeable, patient, encouraging and caring about our progress in his class…

Professor Christine Thomas might be the most dedicated, passionate teacher I have ever had…

See the full story at Brandeis NOW.

MRSEC Summer Courses 2012

The Brandeis Materials Research Science and Engineering Center announces two new one week summer 2012 courses:

  • Introduction to Microfluidics Technology (June 18-22, 2012)
  • Modern Optical Microscopy  (June 25-29, 2012)

Introduction to Microfluidics Technology will be taught by the director of the Brandeis Microfluidics Center. The course is based on strategies employed when teaching new users of the facility how to utilize microfluidic technology in research work.

Modern Optical Microscopy will be taught by Professor Zvonimir Dogic of the Physics department at Brandeis. It is based on a very successful one semester graduate course offered at Brandeis on the same topic. (see a review of this course from last year).

See the MRSEC website for application materials.

Teaching position open in Biology

The Biology Department at Brandeis University seeks a full-time faculty member to teach introductory genetics and cell biology lecture classes and additional undergraduates electives in biology, to begin Fall 2012. Candidate should have a Ph.D. in the area of molecular/cell/genetics, postdoctoral and/or teaching experience and be committed to undergraduate education. This will be a two-year, renewable appointment at the rank of lecturer and salary commensurate with experience.

Applicants should submit CV, statement on teaching philosophy and three letters of reference via email to or by post to

Heather Felton
Biology Department,Mailstop 008
Brandeis University
Waltham, MA 02454-9110.

For more information about Biology at Brandeis, please visit our website.

First consideration will be given to applications received by February 17, 2012.

Brandeis University is an equal opportunity employer, committed to building a culturally diverse intellectual community, and strongly encourages applications from women and minorities.

New course on Genomic Health Care

Professor Barbara Lerner will teach a new course, BIOL 235b American Health Policy & Practice and the Delivery of Genomic Health Care, in Spring Semester, 2012. The course is now scheduled for Block X2,  Tuesdays from 6:30 PM–9:20 PM. Enrollment is limited to Genetic Counseling or Health Policy graduate students or with permission of the instructor.

The continuous discovery of genetic markers for common diseases is leading to an increasing demand for genetic services, and for the integration of traditional medical genetics with mainstream medicine and public health care. In addition, the American healthcare system is evolving and huge changes in how care is accessed, financed and delivered can be expected in the coming years. Those providing genetic services will therefore need a strong background in the structure of the American healthcare system and how public policy is influencing the field of medical genetics. This course is specifically designed to meet this objective using a mixture of readings from the literature, writing assignments, lecture, class discussion, guest speakers, and student presentations.

New course on RNA

Professors Michael Rosbash and Nelson Lau will teach a new version of BIOL 176b RiboNucleicAcids (RNA) in Spring Semester, 2012. The course is now scheduled for Block S8   W 9:00 AM–11:50 AM.

RNA is a central molecule of all living organisms.  RNA is extremely versatile and can function as an information storage and transfer device, an enzyme, a regulator of gene expression, or a cellular scaffold.   As biologists discover new types of RNAs and new functions for these different types, students must become aware of this progress to gain a complete view of the integral nature of RNA in all branches of the life sciences.

This seminar course will be a weekly discussion of primary literature that broadly covers key breakthroughs in this important subfield of molecular biology. We will examine the versatility and biological functions of RiboNucleicAcides (RNA) in an upper-level seminar and primary-literature based course.Topics include splicing and the spliceosome, the ribosome, ribozymes and the RNA World Hypothesis, RNA editing, RNA interference, and long non-coding RNAs.

This course intends to educate students to become experts on the diverse biological function of RNA.  This course is designed for fulfilling the science requirement for Biology majors. Students will learn how to read the primary literature on classic and recent discoveries concerning RNA.

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