MS in Data Science in the US: Top Universities, Requirements, Job Opportunities

by rishika.saluja

Being at the growth stage, Data Science is amongst those programs which are going to decide our technologically advanced future based on the numbers. From an age of petabyte, we are graduating towards the age of exabyte. Not many universities across the world offer DS programs with relevant and in-depth knowledge. Therefore, it becomes all the more important for a candidate to choose this program from a university, which understands the novelty of this program and masters the art of this science program with an ace. 

Why Study MS in Data Science in the US?

United States’ Data Science market is one of the most mature markets in the evolution of analytics.  Every year, a humungous number of students appear for GRE/GMAT/SAT/TOEFL exam with a dream of studying in a US university - Data Science being amongst the top sought after programs. Yet only a limited number of them are able to realise this dream! The United States not only gives you the best available knowledge in your respective field but also gives you an opportunity to work with the best scientific minds available across! So, it not only gives you knowledge, but it also gives you ample of opportunities to use that knowledge.

Types of Masters in Data Science available in the US

The students can choose between mainly two types of degree modes available:

  1. Residential
  2. Online

Under residential degree mode, the student can opt either the applied track or the computational track, depending upon how they want to pursue their career further.

Note: Note, the fees of both the programs of course varies. Please check the university website for the same.

Top Universities for Data Science in the US (on-campus)

Some of the top universities for Masters in Data Science in the USA are listed below for you to take a look, along with their course name and duration.

Also, take note that these below-mentioned universities are not in any particular order

University NameCourse NameDuration
Columbia UniversityMS in Data Science 1.5 years
New York UniversityMS in Data Science2 years
Carnegie Mellon UniversityMaster of Computational Data Science2 years
Stanford UniversityMaster of Science in Statistics: Data Science2 years
University of WashingtonMaster of Science in Data Science2 years
Northwestern UniversityMaster of Science in Analytics15 months
Georgia Institute of TechnologyMaster of Science in Analytics1 year
University of Minnesota – Twin CitiesMS in Data Science2 years

Educational Prerequisites

Students applying for MS in Data Science from the US can be from a variety of backgrounds such as Statistics, Computer Science, Physics, Business, Mathematics, Engineering, Economics, Biology and Psychology.

Application Requirements

  1. Official Transcripts

The aspirants, under this, have to submit a scanned copy of past academic records right after high school, such as degree, awards, achievements, etc. If these documents are in the regional language then those have to be converted into English language before submitting, along with the original copy in the regional language.

  1. Graduate Record Examinations (GRE) score

This is the exam for which the student has to appear compulsorily before applying for admission to a graduate course in any of the universities across the US.

Note that the GMAT score will not be considered for this particular programme. Appearance in GRE entrance exam is compulsory.

  1. Language Proficiency Test (TOEFL or IELTS score)

Appearing for an English proficiency test(TOEFL or IELTS) is mandatory for any aspirant who is either a native from a non-English speaking nation or has not done the studies(under-graduation) in the English language. Though, any of these two exams’ score is acceptable by the universities, still some prefer TOEFL over IELTS score for admission to their course. So always check that particular university’s guidelines for admission prerequisites while applying to their course.

  1. Statement of Purpose

Statement of Purpose is a document which talks about the interests and future goals of the applicant which can be achieved through this course. The applicant has to specify in the statement how useful will be this degree in his career development and progress.

  1. Letters of Recommendation (LoRs)

Applicants are required to send 3 letters of recommendation to the applied university. These letters have to be from those people who have had directly supervised your work at some point of time, be it your boss in the current/previous office or your professor at the under graduation.  In their letter, they have to testify how hard working you are, highlighting your strengths and suitability.

Work Experience for MS in Data Science

Top Universities in the US have not made it mandatory for its applicants to have work experience for applying to MS in Data Science. Most of the students apply for a graduate program right after their under-graduation. Yet, having work experience is always a plus point, be it in an industry, academia, government or any other sector. It not only gives you an edge over the other candidates but also gives you a hands-on experience of your sector for your further period of study.

Data Scientist Salary trends

According to a Glassdoor report, Data Scientists have the best paid jobs in the US. The report further throws light on the median salary for a Data Scientist which amounts to $1,16,000 making it quite lucrative.

Data Scientist Job Opportunities

Following are the data scientist job titles you could get after you complete the course and enter the professional world:

  • Data Scientist
  • Data Engineer
  • Business Analyst
  • Data Analyst
  • Business Intelligence Manager
  • Data Architect
  • Data Administrator, among a few others
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