Students prepare for 21st century research in the function, analysis, modeling and understanding of living systems at each of several scales, from the molecular through the cellular to the organ system and organism. Multiscale and translational examples develop conceptual skills necessary to design meaningful experiments, derive insight from journal reports, work within the group structure now essential for contemporary research, and communicate new developments and related findings to today’s peers and future students. Structural and developmental concepts are covered as they illuminate function. The course is modular, presented in six independent but coordinated modules. All first-year students in the PBSB Program take all six modules. The entire course and individual modules are open to students of other programs with the permission of the course director. NOTE: all students must register separately for each module taken. Each module consists of multiple weeks. Typical weeks for modules 1-5 include two in-depth lecture-conferences that combine careful presentation of core material with student participation, and conclude with either a computational analysis and/or model, or a relevant illuminating article from the literature. The final module, CPBSB6, introduces new instructional modalities and perspectives designed to instill skills essential for researchers.