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Learner Profile
Siyan Xu

Siyan Xu



HMX Courses

Biochemistry, Physiology, Immunology, Genetics, Pharmacology, Cancer Genomics and Precision Oncology

Siyan Xu, PhD works as a senior principal biostatistician at Novartis, a global pharmaceutical company. She took HMX courses to learn more about medicine to improve in her work and advance her career.

Hear more about Siyan’x career journey on the Learning Paths podcast.

Why were you interested in HMX courses?

During my work at Novartis, I have had exposure to pharmacokinetics (PK) and pharmacodynamics (PD), and highly appreciate how important the knowledge of both drug and disease is to my daily work. So to become a better drug developer, I decided to take some medical courses…I found HMX Fundamentals courses very attractive.

Did you have any background in the topics prior to taking HMX courses?

No, I haven’t taken any [science] courses since physics and chemistry in high school. But I have the opportunity to build and interpret PK/PD mechanistic models at work. That experience motivated me to gain more medical knowledge from HMX courses in addition to my analytics background.

Have the courses met your expectations?

I’ve found all the courses to be tremendously helpful. The topics are so well organized, and the lectures cover those fundamental ideas very well…they are challenging in a positive way.

What course features did you find most helpful for your learning?

First, I liked the examples [of medical concepts] in all the courses….In physiology and biochemistry, they would introduce some scenarios with some mysteries at the beginning of the lessons. Those can attract the students to learn more. After the professors explained the principal videos with the core concepts, it’s very important for students to link back and see how we have learned, and explain the mystery from the beginning – so at the end of the course we feel we can explain those kinds of clinical cases with our knowledge. That’s very, very helpful.

Do you think the courses would be useful for others in your field?

I think so. The courses are generally useful for people who don’t have a medical background or biology background…I plan to take the others, one by one.

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