MS in Data Science in USA: Universities & Course Details

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With a rapid increase in data in our everyday lives, the need for professionals who can manage mountains of data efficiently has surged. This has led to colleges and universities offering different courses in Data Science. One such really popular course is MS in Data Science. Students worldwide have started enrolling in this course to fill the demand and supply gap in the analytics industry.

Now, if you are one such student, then your first and natural choice of location will always be the USA as it is the Mecca of Data Science, the land where ‘Microsofts’ and ‘Googles’ reside and churn out terabytes of data every week. But which institute do you pick to pursue an MS in Data Science in the USA?

This LeapScholar guide can come in handy as we bring you the top universities in the USA for pursuing a Master of Science in Data Science.

Top Universities for MS in Data Science in the USA

Stanford University

Ranked #2 in the world by The Times Higher Education, Stanford offers a globally recognised data science course in the US that prepares students to face the dynamic analytics industry and become an expert in the field.

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MS in Data Science in USA: Universities & Course Details

Eligibility Criteria

  • An undergraduate degree from a recognised institution.
  • Technical knowledge of engineering, physics, mathematics, and computer science.
  • English proficiency score of 7 in IELTS or 100 in TOEFL.

Tuition Fee

Around $100,000 for two years.

Admission Process

After submitting the application form, you have to complete an acceptance process as part of the Stanford acceptance policy. You also have to submit all the necessary documents supporting your education and stay in the USA.

Harvard University

Ranked #1 in the 2022 Best Global Universities Rankings, Harvard has probably one of the finest Data Science courses in the USA. It covers everything from the fundamentals of statistical modelling to computational data analysis.

Eligibility Criteria

  • A minimum of 60% in bachelor’s degree.
  • A score of 7 on the IELTS English proficiency test.
  • Submission of GRE scores (at least 292 is needed) is mandatory.
  • Students also need to have an excellent knowledge of maths, physics, and engineering to be eligible for this program.

Tuition Fee

Around $95,000-$100,000 for two years. This cost excludes living and other expenses.

Admission Process

Application forms can be downloaded from the official university webpage and submitted, along with an application fee of $100. Along with the application, the following documents are to be submitted –

  • Transcripts of bachelor’s degree
  • Financial documents – evidence of the student’s financial status (required to claim university funding)
  • Letter of Recommendation
  • Statement of Purpose (SOP)
  • Resume

After shortlisting, you will receive an offer letter, using which you can process your visa application.

University of Pennsylvania

Ranked #13 in the QS Global Rankings 2022, UPenn offers a cutting-edge data science course in the USA that covers all the core topics such as Machine Learning, Big Data analytics, computational statistics, etc.

Eligibility Criteria

  • Students must have completed a four-year bachelor’s degree program from a recognised university in the home country.
  • English language proficiency test is mandatory for Indian applicants. A minimum score of 7.5 or 100 in either IELTS or TOEFL, respectively, will be considered valid for admission.
  • GRE scores can be submitted, though it is not mandatory. There will be no impact on your application if you have not submitted a GRE score.

Tuition Fee

Approximately $80,000 for the entire course.

Admission Process

Admission for the spring intake is open right now and closes by May 2022. Students can fill out the online application form available on the university’s website and submit it before the deadline along with an application fee of $90.

Columbia University

According to US News and World Report, Columbia University is ranked #6 in Data Science as a ‘Best Value School’. This university offers an MS degree in data analytics, Machine Learning, and Artificial Intelligence. The capstone project at the end of the course allows the student to interact with industry professionals and get a real-time experience in data handling.

Eligibility Criteria

  • Undergraduate degree with a minimum of 60% during graduation.
  • Knowledge of mathematics and physics is mandatory.
  • Basic coursework about computer programming languages will be an added advantage.
  • A minimum of 7.0 in IELTS or 100 in TOEFL is a must for international applicants whose official language is not English.
  • GRE scores are optional.

Tuition Fee

$70,000 to $80,000 in total for two years.

Admission Process

The application forms for the spring intake are about to open, and students can download them from the official website. A non-refundable deposit of $85 is to be paid as application fees. Transcripts, letters of recommendation, and a statement of purpose are to be attached with the application form.

University of Southern California

Ranked #24 in Data Science according to US News & World Report 2021, the University of Southern California has a history of churning out successful data scientists through its intensive industry-friendly curriculum. The master’s degree program is available on both a full-time and part-time basis to help working professionals complete the course.

Eligibility Criteria

  • A bachelor’s degree from a recognised university in any engineering discipline.
  • International students should also submit a minimum score of 6.5 in IELTS.

Tuition Fee

Approximately $70,000 for two years.

Admission Process

The admission for the 2023 intake opens in September 2022. Students can start applying after submitting their transcripts and other documents supporting their past education.

Johns Hopkins University

Ranked #12 by The Times Higher Education, this university provides extensive research training in advanced mathematics, computing, and statistics through its MS program.

Eligibility Criteria

  • Bachelor’s degree from any NACES-accredited university in the home country
  • Technical background in any engineering discipline with knowledge of calculus and basic programming languages
  • An English proficiency test score of 7.0 in IELTS or 600 in TOEFL is mandatory.

Tuition Fee

Around $50,000 for two years.

Admission Process

Fill out the application form available on the university website and attach your SOP and other documents supporting your bachelor’s education. The deadline to submit the application form for the fall intake is October 2022.

University of Washington

UW is ranked #7 in the world, according to the US News & World Report’s Best Global Universities. The MS in Data Science program is available in both full-time and online modes at this university. Students at the University of Washington usually progress as a cohort. The cohort approach has fetched great results for the university as well as the students.

Eligibility Criteria

  • A 4-year bachelor’s degree
  • There is no GRE requirement.
  • English language proficiency test is mandatory. This university does not accept IELTS scores; only TOEFL is considered. A minimum score of 106 in TOEFL is required to be considered for admission.

Tuition Fee

Around $50,000 for both years.

Admission Process

The admission process for autumn 2023 will start in the month of September 2022. Students need to fill out the application form and send it along with their UG transcripts, letters of recommendation, and statement of purpose (SOP). Once shortlisted, a call letter will be sent, which can be used to apply for the visa and study permit.

And those are the best universities offering a Master in Data Science in the USA. There are many other colleges that have not found a spot on this list that are as good as the above universities. The biggest challenge is getting admitted to these universities. However, with LeapScholar, that won’t be the case anymore.

We have years of experience guiding students from India to get admission to top colleges in countries like the United States, Australia, and Canada. We organise regular one-to-one counselling sessions and also provide you with the latest updates from the universities related to Data Science courses in the USA. To know more about how we can help you, contact us now.

Frequently Asked Questions 

1. What is the difference between a data scientist and a data analyst?

Though the terms data scientist and data analyst are used interchangeably, there is a huge difference between the two roles. A data analyst is one who analyses existing data, while a data scientist is someone who looks for innovative ways of capturing data.

2. What are the career opportunities you get after completing a master’s degree in Data Science?

By doing a master’s in Data Science in the USA, you will get access to a plethora of job opportunities in the Data Science field. Companies like Amazon, Google, and Facebook deal with huge amounts of data daily and are constantly looking for data scientists.

3. Is a study permit mandatory in the USA?

Yes. To pursue the master’s in Data Science USA universities offer, students must have a valid study permit and also a valid student visa. Your entry will be prohibited if you do not possess either of these documents at the time of immigration.

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Debasmita Das

Study abroad professional with 14 years of extensive experience in advising associates, recruiting and counselling students.

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