Learn to think like a bioscientist
Bioscience: An Inside Look at Infectious Disease
Are you curious about how scientists study and treat infectious diseases at the very deepest level? Would you like to explore college majors and careers connected with this field? If you have a passion for understanding how diseases spring from nature to humans and then spread across our planet, this course is for you. We’ll take a deep dive into the causes and treatments of conditions such as Covid-19, tuberculosis, HIV and more. Ideal for anyone interested in pre-med, scientific research, global health, biology or chemistry.
Multiple 2- and 4-week sessions.
For students ages 13+.
Understand infectious disease from the molecules up
Discover how epidemiologists identify the source of disease
Examine how cholera, Zika, bubonic plague are discovered and traced down to “Patient Zero.” Understand what epidemiologists do, how contact tracing is done, and how outbreaks occur. Study the history, symptoms and prevalence of specific diseases.
Explore the exciting work of pioneers such as Louis Pasteur and others
Learn about major discoveries in the field of infectious disease—the work of Pasteur, Robert Koch, Alexander Yersin and others. Understand the differences between viral, bacterial and other infectious pathogens. Gain insight into the way the immune system fights off disease.
Learn how to research infectious disease
Gain insight from the research biomedical scientists use. We will investigate everything from current literature to ancient texts that describe symptoms, impacts and treatments used to address the spread of infectious diseases. You’ll learn how to search databases and draw on scientific research to trace the pathway of diseases.
Find out how diseases are able to infect human cells
Be able to define and describe the molecular methods pathogens use to make human cells sick. Understand the ways in which infectious molecules replicate and how the body’s immune system fights back. Study the flu (virus), HIV (retrovirus) and E. Coli (bacteria.)
Explore treatments, the history of vaccines and the latest detection technologies
Learn the difference between antivirals and antibiotics and how they work. Study the history of vaccines and how they are used to prevent infectious disease and its spread. Discover how new DNA-related technologies are being used and how viruses themselves can treat certain diseases.
Prepare for a future related to infectious disease
Topics covered in this course offer a good background to help you prepare for pre-med or explore future careers as a physician, lab assistant, medical researcher, science journalist or other positions related to the healthcare field.
How You Will Benefit
- Understand how epidemiologists discover, trace and treat infectious disease
- Learn the basics of scientific research—how to work with databases and medical literature
- Gain an understanding of the difference between viral, bacterial and other pathogens that cause disease
- Acquire a working knowledge of the molecular and chemical structure of infectious disease
- Develop your communication, thinking and presentation skills
- Learn asynchronously: Lessons by your professor are delivered through videos so that you can tune in whenever your schedule allows — the ultimate in flexibility
- Work with mentors in live group sessions to get the most out of your studies
- Determine if college courses/careers related to infectious disease are right for you
Apply Now for the Next Available Course
Hear from Wake Forest
Hear from our students
Laura, bioscience student from Brazil
"This course is an excellent opportunity for anyone who wants to learn more about viruses, bacteria and diseases. The instructors and mentors are really good, and the required activities are too."
Sam, bioscience student from CA
"I would recommend this course as it was interactive, informative, and easy to navigate. I learned a lot about the field of bioscience which helped me to determine what area I might want to research more."
3 Learning Advantages Designed for You
Final Capstone Project
The course culminates with a special capstone project that allows you to:
- Demonstrate what you’ve learned in this course
- Choose an infectious disease and tell its story (the cause, history, symptoms, treatment, etc.)
- Create a presentation using video, Powerpoint, Zoom or another medium you prefer.
You’ll receive guidance from a mentor who can support you and answer questions as you deepen your learning experience. You can expect:
- Encouragement and direction on all assignments
- Inspiration, motivation and confidence to help you succeed
- Brainstorming to help you prepare for your final capstone project
- 100% online, works with your schedule.
- Asynchronous: you’ll learn through video— tune in anytime that works for you.
- 25 - 30 hours of total instruction and course work, including engaging multimedia simulations and curated assignments for which you will receive guidance and support
- Regular live group online sessions with a mentor
- Meet fellow students from around the world
Course designed by Wake Forest University faculty
Dr. Megan Rudock, Ph.D., Wake Forest University
Dr. Megan Rudock earned her B.S. in Chemistry from the University of Georgia, with research focused in biochemistry and molecular biology. She then earned her Ph.D. in Molecular Genetics and Genomics at Wake Forest University School of Medicine. Her doctoral research focused on population genetics and the biochemical and molecular pathways leading to subclinical atherosclerosis and insulin resistance.
Dr. Rudock is a member of the teaching faculty in the Chemistry Department at Wake Forest University where she has primarily been teaching Everyday Chemistry, General Chemistry and Biochemistry.
Meet The Mentors
Wake Forest University graduate with a degree in Medicinal Chemistry and Drug Discovery. She contributed to research projects concerning both drug design and synthesis as well as crystallographic structure determination. Carly's pursuing a PhD at West Virginia University, with a focus on organometallic chemistry and catalysis.
Graduate student at Wake Forest University pursuing a PhD in Organic Chemistry. He graduated with a BS in Chemistry and Biology from Catawba College.
Senior at Wake Forest University with a major in Chemistry and concentrations in Medicinal Chemistry, Studio Art, and Spanish. Next year, she will focus on biochemistry research in the Molecular and Cell Biology PhD program at UC Berkeley.
Senior at Wake Forest University majoring in Health and Exercise Science with a double minor in Biology and Chemistry double minor.
Senior at Wake Forest University with a major in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. She studied x-ray crystallography and protein structure in her undergraduate research projects and will be a research technician this year in a structural biology lab at the Dana Farber Cancer Institute.
Senior at Wake Forest University majoring in Biology (BS) and minoring in Chemistry and Psychology. She plans on attending medical school and aspires to be an allergist.
How to Apply:
It’s easy. No transcripts or letters of recommendation are required. Our application will ask you to provide the following:
- Basic contact information for you and your parent or guardian.
- Why you wish to take this course. You can tell your story through writing, video, photos — any media you prefer.
NOTE: please submit all application materials in English
Begin the guided process. It should take only a few minutes of your time to answer the questions.Begin the guided process
Frequently Asked Questions
How will you be graded? What are assignments like? How much time do you get to turn around a project? When do you find out if you’re accepted?Answers to your questions here
We offer need-based scholarships in each cohort to students exhibiting high potential who need assistance affording the associated cost. If you would like to be considered for a scholarship but you:
- Haven't applied to the program, complete your application now. The scholarship application is included.
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