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Applications Open for +DS Fall 2020 Virtual Research Program

We invite Duke students to apply for the +DS fall semester virtual research program.

The program is designed to allow students who have previously completed the +DS curriculum to continue their engagement with substantive applied projects. The +DS Advanced Projects in Health Data Science offer Duke students, both undergraduate and graduate, the opportunity to be a part of research teams applying advanced machine learning (deep learning) to important areas of medicine. The students will work in teams, mentored by leading Duke faculty involved in data science research, with guidance by practicing clinicians. The fall will culminate in a showcase session where student teams will present their results.

The fall 2020 program will be held remotely and there will be no in-person or campus-based activity for students.

Target Student Population

The program is designed to allow students who have previously completed the +DS curriculum to continue their engagement with substantive applied projects. Students are eligible to apply if they have previously completed the +DS class (POE 190.01/790.01; EGR 190.06/590.06, or the 2018-2019 projects in medicine). Students will be selected for participation informed by their prior performance with +DS.

Students who have not yet completed the +DS curriculum are encouraged to register instead for the fall 2020 +DS class, “AI for Everyone,” which includes a strong project component.

Time Commitment

Students interested in this program must be prepared to devote time during the fall 2020 semester, generally as an independent study project. Please consult your department’s independent study requirements for specific expectations of hours and effort.

Students in the program will attend scheduled virtual sessions, including weekly project meetings (scheduled by each team according to their availability) and weekly group sessions and clinics (Monday afternoons or Wednesday mornings).

How to Apply

To apply for the +DS fall 2020 research program, please email the following items to

  • A current resume or CV
  • In the body of the e-mail, the following information:
    • Your name
    • Your degree program and expected graduation date
    • How have you previously completed the +DS curriculum, and in what semester?
      • Please specify POE 190.01/790.01; EGR 190.06/590.06, or the 2018-2019 projects in medicine
    • Have you previously participated in a +DS advanced project?
      • If so, please list semesters/years of participation and mentor names
    • A brief statement of why you are interested in this program
    • Would you set up your +DS project participation as an independent study, senior thesis, or other type of format for academic credit?
      • If so, please describe, including the specific department (for example, ECE, CS, etc)
      • When is the deadline for your department to review details of your proposed project?
    • Do you have any particular areas of interest?
      • For example, interests might include medical imaging, natural language processing, EHR-based data prediction, -omics analysis
      • (For students who are selected to participate, your interests will help us match you with projects in our portfolio)
    • Do you anticipate any scheduling conflicts with Monday afternoons between 3-6 PM (eastern time) and Wednesday mornings between 9-11 AM (eastern time)?
      • If so, please describe
      • (We plan to choose meeting times, generally for 1-hour sessions, within these blocks)

Applications are due on Thursday, August 20, 2020 by 10:00 PM. Please include “+DS Fall 2020 Virtual Research Program” in the subject line of your e-mail.

About +DS Projects

Since the spring of 2019, the Duke+DataScience (+DS) program has supported 73 project teams with 143 unique students. Many students engage with +DS projects over more than 1 semester, beginning with the "AI for Everyone” course and continuing into advanced projects with the research program. Of the projects, 70% were in the health data science track, 25% in self-initiated domains, and 5% in the humanities track.

Most recently, +DS formed a cohort of 7 students for the +DS Summer 2020 Virtual Research Program from a highly competitive 28 applications. The students came from a broad range of experiences including 4 undergraduate students, a master’s student, and 2 PhD students. Students participated in health data science projects with Duke-based research, including molecular and electronic health record (EHR)-based analyses related to COVID-19, as well as image-based modeling for retinopathy and cardiovascular disease, and natural language processing with peripheral artery disease.

To learn more about +DS, please visit