We launched the NCBI Virtual Outreach Event series in the fall of 2021 to expand our online outreach to a worldwide audience of people who use NCBI resources for biological/biomedical research, science education, and clinical applications. Our virtual outreach events include interactive workshops, webinars, and codeathons. In the past year, we have hosted 34 virtual events and served over 1,600 participants (Figure 1).
Our education team serves a diverse group of scientists and researchers, so we offer three different virtual learning experiences — workshops, webinars, and codeathons. Workshops, our most popular offering, are typically 1.5-3 hours long, and are interactive learning experiences. Our workshop educators build from fundamental to more advanced concepts with hands-on, case study-based exercises group work, and Q&A sessions. Our webinars are shorter and tailored for larger groups, similar to seminars. As with the workshops, we offer Q&A sessions and support from NCBI experts. Our codeathons are multi-day collaborative events aimed at solving biological problems, creating new computational tools, and connecting scientists at any stage of their career. All of our virtual outreach events are free and open to the public.
Figure 1. NCBI Virtual Outreach Event 1st Year Attendance Information.
Not only do we offer different learning experiences in our Virtual Outreach Event series, but our events feature a variety of educators and topics (Figure 2). In the past year, seven NCBI educators have covered topics including: Clinical Genetics, Genomic Analysis and Visualization, Biomolecular Structure Exploration, Molecular Evolutionary Analysis, PubMed Literature Mining, Cloud Computing for Biologists, Bioinformatics/Data Science Methods, Federal Granting, and more.
Figure 2. Virtual Outreach Event Series topics in the past year. You can view course materials, recordings, or work completed in all of these workshops, webinars, and codeathons on our NCBI Outreach Events Page.