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GCC/BOSC - A fruitful year for the Galaxy Training materials

Time slot: 20min

The primary problem with the explosion of biomedical datasets is not the data itself, not computational resources, and not the required storage space, but the general lack of trained and skilled researchers to manipulate and analyze these data. Eliminating this problem requires development of comprehensive educational resources.

During last GCC, we presented a first version of a community-driven framework that enables modern, interactive teaching of data analytics in life sciences and facilitates the development of training materials. The key feature of our system is that it is not a static resource, but a continuously improved collection of tutorials. By coupling tutorials with a web-based analysis framework such as Galaxy, researchers can learn by performing data analysis themselves through a web browser, without the need to install software or search for example datasets. More than 80 trainings right at your fingertips.

The first version was already good. But we are aiming high and thought we could do more and better. So we made a lot of improvements during the last year!

Many new topics and tutorials have been added, and the existing tutorials have been improved and completed by adding content, datasets, interactive tours, and workflows. The tutorials from the Galaxy Community Hub ( have also been migrated to this new platform. We also worked on the infrastructure to make the materials easily findable, by indexing of all tutorials on the ELIXIR Training platform (TeSS), and by adding tags to the tutorials. The website, now served at, has been reshaped to make it more accessible. PDFs for each tutorial manual and slide deck are now automatically generated and provided, and can be used to print handouts in a classroom setting. Tutorials have been made even easier to run, through the creation of a docker image for every topic, and through the annotation of each training module with the public Galaxy instances which support it. We also facilitated the creation of new materials by improved documentation, automatic testing and deployment on a test website to preview the changes before merging, and via the Galaxy Tour Builder, a browser plugin for the generation of interactive tours which accompany each tutorial. As a sign of its success, many new contributors have joined the effort in this past year. To thank all our contributors and give them credit, we have created a dedicated page, the hall of fame, to highlight the amazing community without whom this project would not be possible. Lastly, we also wrote a paper [1] about the whole effort which has been accepted in Cell Systems.

But it is not enough! We have still a lot of idea to make it even better.

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