Focus on specialised courses

June 26th 2018

The centre for continuing education in health and life sciences (ULB-HeLSci) offers some 90 specialised courses that target a highly specialised topic or technology.

High-throughput sequencing, fluorescence microscopy, mass spectrometry, flow cytometry… People who work in the field of biotechnologies often rely on cutting-edge technologies. ‘But if we are to use these technologies appropriately, it is essential we understand how they work,’ reminds Julie Marchal, training course coordinator at HeLSci. ‘If you have not mastered the theoretical bases of certain techniques, you could make mistakes when preparing your samples, or when configuring your machine, for instance. In turn, this could produce incorrect results.’

Talking with contractors on an equal footing

When a company or university does not have a certain technology in its laboratory, it can call upon an outside contractor. ‘Our specialised courses enable workers to better communicate with such contractors,’ explains Julie Marchal. ‘They can voice their expectations regarding the task at hand more accurately and more efficiently.’

Courses tailored to the needs of professionals

HeLSci currently offers 92 specialised courses. The catalogue changes based on the industry's needs, as well as on the pool of expertise and equipment available at the Biopark or at ULB. ‘Either there is demand coming from the people on the ground, such as employers who need skilled personnel, or we [HeLSci] identify an up-and-coming technique or field of study that will soon take off.This is what happened with epigenomics, a discipline on which an advanced course has been offered since 2012 by the team of François Fuks, professor of epigenetics at ULB.

Advanced practical courses

Duration: the courses generally consist in modules of half a day to 2 days. Cost: the price for specialised courses depends on the professional situation. Place: specialised training courses are held at the Biopark, on the Erasme campus, or with partners who have the required equipment. Training can also be provided on a business' own premises.