Centre for eResearch

Training and outreach

There are a number of groups within the University provide training courses for staff and Doctoral researchers such as CLeaR, POD etc. However, there is no consistent and cohesive strategy to raise the level of digital capability and the basic software programming skills required for research. In responding to a growing skills gap between what researchers know and what they need to know to be productive as 21st century scholars, staff at the Centre are examining ways to enhance the IT skills of researchers to enable them to engage effectively in computationally intensive research.

Winter Bootcamp 2017
Winter Bootcamp 2017

The Centre offers a number of training and education workshops at regular intervals throughout the year, including:  

  • Introduction to Big Data and High Performance Computing.
  • Introducation to Virtual Machines.
  • High Performance Computing with MATLAB and GPUs.
  • Informal weekly HackyHour drop-in session.

The Big Data and High Performance Computing is part of the doctoral skills programme offered to doctoral students through the School of Graduate Studies.

The course provides an overview of services available to researchers, as well as best practices for working with high performance computing and research data. While there are similar efforts to introduce researchers to these concepts in some research groups, this is currently the only course of its kind being offered to all PhD students at the University. 

Staff at the Centre also implemented a HackyHour session in 2015. These are informal weekly ‘drop-in’ sessions for researchers to meet and collaborate with their peers on computational problems in their research including issues in coding, workflow design and data management.

As the initiative becomes more popular, it is expected that there will be a regular pool of researchers experienced in eResearch which can offer additional support.

In collaboration with others, the Centre aims to provide scheduled training to researchers and doctoral students in the following areas:

  • Specialised training in scientific computing, scripting. 
  • Doctoral Skills Programme.
  • Extended Software Carpentry courses.
  • Research Data Management workshops.
  • Possibly designed course as required papers in scientific computing, eScience, high performance computing as part of the University degree structure (perhaps at the honours level).

The provision of these extended training resources will ensure staff and students at the University of Auckland have the IT skills they need to undertake computationally intensive cutting edge research.

In addition, the Centre also organised our first Research Bazaar (ResBaz) event earlier this year; and delivered an intensive Winter Bootcamp activity with over 200 attendees. 

For more information, please contact eresearch-training@auckland.ac.nz.