Based on 11 Users
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Overall a poorly organized class. This is really not much of a computer science class either. Though the coding portion is pretty easy overall there is little explanation in his lectures about how you are actually to code the statistics and material discussed in lecture. I was able to pretty much figure out the material on my own through the mission trainings but there is a large disconnect between what he is trying to explain conceptually and what you are trying to achieve practically. I was fairly interested in this class initially but it has all but ruined my interest in bioinformatics.
If all you care about is the grade, you should be able to get a B or A if you have the patience to sit there and sort through the plethora of unclear slides from lectures. Otherwise I would avoid this class in general.
I really enjoyed this class. Dr. Lee has put a lot of effort into creating interactive lessons and homeworks. This is not an easy class, and it's a two hour lecture. I thought he did a great job, though there's still some bugs and course materials aren't 100% complete yet. I thought the lectures did a good job of walking through lessons step by step. I found Dr. Lee to be engaging and clear, but I have some background in this area, so that probably helped.
Coursework is hard but useful. The mission training assignments are great because you are graded on completion. So it encourages you to think as much as you can about a problem, answer it, and then you can immediately see the answer and what he was trying to highlight. The mission trainings pretty explicitly cover most of the complexities of the programming assignments, which are challenging and time consuming but fun (imo).
I've gotten the impression from my program that Dr. Lee is well known in the bioinformatics field and worked on some foundational problems. I'm glad I got to take this course. Basically, if you want to be challenged and are interested in bioinformatics, take this course. I am not a particularly great student, nor did I know a lot of stats coming in, but I've gotten an A on (almost) everything so far by staying on top of things and just paying attention.
Dr. Lee seems like a nice guy, but he is a very poor teacher. Like many other UCLA professors, he's super smart but fails to get what students are not understanding. Going from lecture material to work on the homework (called mission training) is difficult, as the mission training questions are vaguely worded and assume a lot of statistical understanding that he speeds over in class. Make no mistake, this is a statistics course. The coding projects are simple and the biological connection is minimal, it's only there to set up questions. If you're great at statistics and can learn on your own, this course might be ok for you. As a senior, it's one of the least helpful I've taken at UCLA.
Again, Dr. Lee is a great guy. But this course needs a makeover and he could benefit from being more clear in his jumps from theory to application.
This is a statistical class. If you cannot understand the concepts and equations, it will be a disaster. The professor is a poor lecturer. I don't want to listen to him because he speaks too slowly. Since everything is in the mission training, you'll know everything after you do your homework and see the answers. If you feel hard to understand him in class, go to his office hour.
Like others said, he can be quite boring. He pretty much lectures off the slides. There's lots of material he has to cover, and the slides can be quite conceptual/analytical. It's a math/stat-like class, with programming (computer science) projects, so if you're not good at math or computer programming, then it'll be tough. Most of the class are computer science students, and they tend to be better at math and the programming projects will be easy for them, so expect competition. As for the professor, he's actually a nice guy, and if you go to his office hours, he will try to help you understand the material. This is a tough course, but the professor is pretty nice.