Applications for summer 2024 are closed.

The Center for Computational Thinking’s Ph.D. Computational Fellowship provides Ph.D. students in any Ph.D. program who lack summer funding with foundational classes in data science to accelerate their own research program.

The fellowship provides students with project- and team-based learning to better prepare them for data-centric research problems, and aims to create a pipeline of diverse, curious, and savvy individuals who will be future leaders in computation. Through this program, students continuously develop their emerging programming skills to apply to academic centered research questions.

During this summer-long fellowship, students apply their new computational skills to research problems relevant to their fields, from the humanities to the social sciences to the natural/physical sciences. At the conclusion of the summer, the students prepare a short presentation and record of their project to share broadly.

The fellowship consists of two parts:

  • A weeklong “boot camp” that will provide students with a zero-entry introduction to the R programming language.
  • Weekly office hours with assigned mentors.
Introduction to Data Science Boot Camp 

This workshop introduces students to the emerging field of data science, including data analysis and visualization. Students will be provided with datasets and introduced to packages and code used to examine data. In the first half of each class, students will be lectured on methods and shown demonstrations; in the second half, students will use tools to analyze real data; laptop computers are required.

Methods for filtering, sorting, and transforming data will be discussed, along with visualization tools and options. Particular attention will be paid to code interpretation and data provenance methods by learning to generate reproducible data output files. For a final bootcamp project, students will present their research question and exploratory data analysis, and share findings with the cohort in a short oral presentation. Although specific pedagogical datasets will be used for analysis in class, this workshop will provide broadly applicable tools to reproducibly analyze and visualize data across domains.

For more information, contact

2024 Details

Who is eligible? 

  • Duke Ph.D. students from any department
  • Preference will be given to applicants who have completed their prelims and have at least 1-2 years to graduate.

What is the stipend? $2,805/month

What is needed to apply? 

  • Up-to-date CV (maximum 2 pages)
  • One-page description of your computational background, reason for applying, and the activities you propose to perform during the fellowship.

When is it? 

  • June 3 - Aug. 23 (12 weeks), beginning with a weeklong data science boot camp

Where is it? Hybrid, with on site participation at the Duke Marine Lab in Beaufort, NC and Duke's West Campus (depending on field of study).

Who leads the program? Akshay Bareja, D. Phil., Assistant Professor of Medicine

What's the application deadline? March 31, 2024.