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The Best Colleges for Data Science in 2021

Many businesses today rely on data modeling, analysis, and big data to make important business decisions. Data is becoming a vital part of modern business because it can give manufacturers an insight into your buying habits. These companies need data scientists to interpret the data and inform their decisions.

To start a career in this field, you need to get trained first. The best schools for data science provide a solid foundation of advanced math and computer science skills. These schools offer training on both bachelor’s and master’s degree levels. This guide will cover the top schools for an MS in Data Science and more.

Top 15 Data Science Schools in 2021 at a Glance

The table below contains the top schools for degrees in data science. It also lists the location, tuition, and other notes for each school. The information in the table was taken from the school’s websites and is subject to change.

School and Degrees State Tuition Notes
Bellevue University
Bachelor of Science in Data Science
Master of Science in Data Science
(NE) $430 per credit hour
$610 per credit
Undergraduate
Graduate
Case Western Reserve University
Bachelor of Science in Data Science and Analytics
(OH) $54,020 per year All Students
Colorado Christian University
Associate of Science in Data Analytics
Bachelor of Science in Data Analytics
(OH) $469 per credit hour All students
Drexel University
Bachelor of Science in Data Science
Master of Science in Data Science
(PA) $54,766 per year
$1,355 per credit hour
Undergraduate
Graduate
Golden Gate University
Bachelor of Science in Data Analytics
(CA) $462 per unit All Students
Northeastern University
Bachelor of Science in Data Science
Master of Science in Data Science
(MA) $27,180 per term
$1,665 per credit hour
Undergraduate
Graduate
Purdue University
Bachelor of Science in Data Science
Bachelor of Science in Data Visualization
(IN) $9,992 per year (includes fees)
$28,794 per year (includes fees)
In-state
Out-of-state
Thomas Edison State University
Bachelor of Science in Data Science and Analytics
Master of Science in Data Science and Analytics
(NJ) $399 per credit
$519 per credit $668 per credit hour
Undergraduate in-state
Undergraduate out-of-state
Graduate
Tufts University
Bachelor of Science in Data Science
Master of Science in Data Science
Master of Science in Data Analytics
(MA) $61,646 per year
$54,196 total
Undergraduate
Graduate
University of California, Irvine
Bachelor of Science in Data Science
(CA) $11,442 per year All students
University of Georgia
Bachelor of Science in Data Science
(GA) $12,080 per year (includes fees)
$31,120 per year (includes fees)
In-state
Out-of-state
University of Iowa
Bachelor of Science in Data Science
(IA) $9,830 per year (includes fees)
$31,793 per year (includes fees)
In-state
Out of state
University of Minnesota
Bachelor of Science in Data Science
Master of Science in Data Science
(MN) $13,318 per year
$31,616 per year$8,790 per semester$13,602 per semester
Undergraduate in-state
Undergraduate out-of-state
Graduate in-state
Graduate out-of-state
University of Rochester
Bachelor of Arts or Science in Data Science
Master of Science in Data Science
(NY) $58,276 per year All students
Worcester Polytechnic Institute
Bachelor of Science in Data Science
Master of Science in Data Science
PhD in Data Science
(MA) $54,640 per year
$1,610 per credit
Undergraduate
Graduate

Online vs In-Person Data Science Degrees

Most online data science degrees are self-paced. This means that students can attend the class at any time by using recorded lectures. This is one way that online classes are more flexible. Students can attend classes at times convenient to their busy schedules.

In-person or traditional training methods also have some advantages. Students who tend to learn better in traditional environments may prefer in-person training. Also, in-person training may offer more individual support to students. You should gauge your learning style and choose the delivery method that works best for you.

Choosing the Best School for You

How can you choose the best school for data science degrees? There are a few different factors that you should consider before making a decision.

Curriculum

One factor that you should consider is the curriculum. There are some basic data science topics that should be covered during the degree program. Check each curriculum to be sure that it covers the topics you need. You should take a capstone course to help develop your portfolio.

Finances

Universities are not cheap, and you might have to cover most of the costs by yourself. Check the university tuition and other fees. Scholarships and financial support may be available in some cases. Some tuition varies depending on whether you’re enrolled full-time or part-time.

Accreditation

Before enrolling, you should check the college accreditation status. Accreditation means that a licensed organization has reviewed the school curriculum and vetted it to ensure it meets the basic academic standards. This information is usually available on most university homepages.

School Size

Large schools are likely to have more resources. These include student housing, computer access, libraries, athletic facilities, health centers, and entertainment. However, a smaller university could mean more one-on-one support for students. You can choose a school with resources that suit your needs.

The Best Data Science Schools in 2021

The Best Data Science Schools in 2021

This guide covers the 15 best data science schools in 2021. The list contains both private and public schools. Each has a summary to give you an idea of what to expect from the school, along with the data science programs they offer.

Bellevue University

This school has both a Bachelor’s and Master’s in Data Science. The bachelor’s degree program focuses on processes in data science as well as the application of these skills for different kinds of jobs. Students build their analytical and statistical expertise. This can help them find a new job or enhance their skills.

Bellevue University Data Science Programs

  • Bachelor of Science in Data Science
  • Master of Science in Data Science

Case Western Reserve University

This university’s bachelor’s program covers data science and analytics. Students learn the processes for efficient collection and management of large datasets. They also learn to extract meaningful conclusions from datasets and develop strategies for formulating and testing hypotheses about data.

Additionally, the curriculum covers fundamental algorithmic approaches for analyzing large datasets. Lastly, students will master open-source analysis, data management tools, and cloud computing.

Case Western Reserve University Data Science Programs

  • Bachelor of Science in Data Science and Analytics

Colorado Christian University

These programs equip students with technical skills to become data analysts. Students must have a strong statistics foundation and mathematics skills. During the program, they will learn theoretical practice for management and design and how to use data analysis to make decisions.

Colorado Christian University Data Science Programs

  • Associate of Science in Data Analytics
  • Bachelor of Science in Data Analytics

Drexel University

The Bachelor of Science in Data Science teaches creating new information products, solving problems, and developing new insights about behaviors. The training covers different domains such as finance, healthcare, business, research, and development.

The university allows students to customize their program with different minors like computing technology, computer science, information systems, human-computer interaction, software engineering, and security technology. These are all great options if you want to specialize in the field.

Drexel University Data Science Programs

  • Bachelor of Science in Data Science
  • Master of Science in Data Science

Golden Gate University

The bachelor’s degree program at Golden Gate University cultivates an understanding of current data analysis trends and how to use insights in organizational contexts. Students in the program master technical aspects of data analysis and big data, including an understanding of how to use data for businesses.

Golden Gate University Data Science Programs

  • Bachelor of Science in Data Analytics

Northeastern University

This degree program studies the collection, storage, manipulation, computational analysis, and retrieval of data in different forms. Students learn exploratory data analysis, large-scale data storage, manipulation of data, machine learning, predictive analysis, and data mining. You can get both a bachelor’s and a master’s at this school.

Northeastern University Data Science Programs

  • Bachelor of Science in Data Science
  • Master of Science in Data Science

Purdue University

These programs cover both foundational and advanced concepts in data analytics. Students apply statistical and technical tools to analyze large data sets. They also use the data to identify current trends and to predict future trends. When students complete the program, they will be familiar with data science best practices.

Purdue University Data Science Programs

  • Bachelor of Science in Data Science
  • Bachelor of Science in Data Visualization

Thomas Edison State University

The Bachelor of Science in Data Science and Analytics program will help you learn machine learning, predictive modeling, visualization techniques, and statistics. Students learn to apply their knowledge of quantitative modeling techniques and statistical data analysis to solve problems. You can also get a master’s degree in the same topics.

Thomas Edison State University Data Science Programs

  • Bachelor of Science in Data Science and Analytics
  • Master of Science in Data Science and Analytics

Tufts University

Tufts University has a variety of data science programs to help you learn how to thrive in the field. For the Bachelor of Science in Data Science, you can enroll in a single major or choose a double major from the engineering department. Master’s programs include data science certificates along with degrees.

Tufts University Data Science Programs

  • Bachelor of Science in Data Science
  • Master of Science in Data Science
  • Master of Science in Data Analytics

University of California, Irvine

This program prepares students for careers in data analysis. The curriculum combines computer science with foundational statistical concepts. Students take computer science and statistics courses in the first two years. By the third and fourth years, the program will become more specialized with topics like information visualization and algorithms.

University of California, Irvine Data Science Programs

  • Bachelor of Science in Data Science

University of Georgia

This university’s program offers a strong foundation in mathematics and data science. It also covers algorithms, data mining, data collection, machine learning, and inference. Students learn to develop software, process data, and design and maintain databases. They also learn how to help make decisions with data.

University of Georgia Data Science Programs

  • Bachelor of Science in Data Science

University of Iowa

This degree focuses on statistical and algorithmic methods for the preparation, analysis, and communication of data. It also emphasizes technical foundations to teach skills for creating special-purpose visualization and analysis tools. This program promotes a clear understanding of how to handle uncertainty during the data-driven decision process.

University of Iowa Data Science Programs

  • Bachelor of Science in Data Science

University of Minnesota

These degrees provide students with practical and theoretical knowledge as well as skills to thrive as data scientists. During the programs, students learn the fundamentals of algorithmic and statistical tools. They also learn methods for processing and managing data. The curriculum provides project-driven and theoretical coursework.

University of Minnesota Data Science Programs

  • Bachelor of Science in Data Science
  • Master of Science in Data Science

University of Rochester

This university has both Master’s and Bachelor’s Degrees in Data Science. Students have the option to enroll in a Bachelor of Science or Bachelor of Arts. The BS degree requires some mathematics courses in statistics and probability. The BA degree is more flexible and better suited for students that want to customize their discipline.

University of Rochester Data Science Programs

  • Bachelor of Arts or Science in Data Science
  • Master of Science in Data Science

Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Students in the bachelor’s program learn to gather data in large amounts. They draw insight from the data and then create action plans. This is one of the only schools on this list to offer both a master’s and PhD for data science. Worcester Polytechnic Institute is a great choice if you want to go to grad school for data science.

Worcester Polytechnic Institute Data Science Programs

  • Bachelor of Science in Data Science
  • Master of Science in Data Science
  • PhD in Data Science

What Can You Do With a
Data Science Degree?

With a data science degree, you can work as a data analyst, data scientist, data architect, or information officer. You can also branch out into other industries. A degree in data science will prepare you to enter these fields with the training and hands-on experience needed by most companies.

How Much Can I Expect to Earn With a Degree in Data Science?

According to PayScale, people with a Bachelor’s Degree in Data Analytics earn an average salary of $63,320. PayScale also reports that people with a Master’s Degree in Data Analytics earn $78,604 per year. These numbers can fluctuate depending on your work experience and supplemental training.

44000
Min salary
63320
Average salary
86000
Top salary

Top Data Science Degree Careers

Profession Minimum Education Average Salary
Data Scientist Bachelor’s Degree $119,413
Data and Analytics Manager Bachelor’s Degree $109,188
Business Intelligence (BI) Developer Bachelor’s Degree $101,527
Statistician Bachelor’s Degree $97,643
Operations Research Analyst Bachelor’s Degree $87,744
Database Administrator Bachelor’s Degree $86,833
Business Analytics Specialist Bachelor’s Degree $84,601
Business Analyst Bachelor’s Degree $82,343
Data Analyst Bachelor’s Degree $67,294
Market Research Analyst Bachelor’s Degree $63,344

Does It Matter What College I Go to for Data Science?

Yes, it does matter what college you choose for data science. The college needs to be accredited, as stated earlier. Also, you should consider your other personal preferences such as customization, cost, and financial aid when choosing a college. Not every school has the resources you need.

Should You Pursue a Degree in Data Science?

Yes, you should pursue a degree in data science if you have a flair for statistics. This degree is interdisciplinary and integrates STEM topics, communications, and business. Data science gives you the flexibility to apply your skills to different industries. You can become a data scientist with one of these top data science degrees.

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