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Indiana University-Bloomington Online Master of Science in Data Science 

Why Indiana University Bloomington? 

The Indiana University-Bloomington Master of Science in Data Science  is offered by the Computer Science department of this public research university in Bloomington, Indiana.  Aspiring data scientists entering the program can expect to be diving into higher-level concepts in this academically rigorous program covering all aspects of the data science discipline. IU-Bloomington expects applicants to have a basic understanding of the programming languages Python and R before beginning the degree. Undergraduate coursework in math and statistics is also required, as is the GRE. However, standardized test requirements can be waived if the applicant has relevant professional experience or another graduate degree. A GPA of 2.75 is expected as the minimum required for consideration. 

Program Snapshot

University Name Indiana University Bloomington
Location Bloomington
State Indiana
Niche.com Grade A
Name of Degree Master of Science in Data Science 
School or Department Administering Program Computer Science
Credits 30
Cost per credit $1394
Tuition for Entire Program $41,280
Test Requirements GRE which can be waived if another graduate degree held or have professional experience
Minimum GPA 2.75
Prerequisite Courses and Skills Basic understanding of the programming languages Python and R, in addition to math and probability.
Campus Visit Required? Optional immersion weekend
Typical Time to Complete Two years or less
When Can Students Start the Program? Fall, Spring, Summer
Program Concentrations
  • Data analytics and visualization
  • Intelligent systems engineering
  • Precision health
  • Cybersecurity
Synchronous classes No
Required Courses
  • Statistical Analysis for Effective Decision-making or Introduction to Statistics
  • Capstone project

1 of:

  • Elements of Artificial Intelligence
  • Machine Learning for Signal Processing
  • Deep Learning Systems
  • Applied Machine Learning
Does the Program Include a Capstone? Yes
Does the program include a practicum or internship? No
Other Features that Make the Program Unique
  • Interesting concentrations
  • Broad range of elective courses
  • Optional immersion weekend
Program Objectives (quoted directly from the program) To hone your expertise as a data professional, your coursework will be grounded in the real-world challenges that local and global communities, organizations, and citizens face on a daily basis.
Program Description This 30-credit online program can be completed within two years or less, enabling students to build expertise as data professionals. The emphasis is on solving real-world challenges faced by local and global communities, organizations, and citizens. Students can concentrate on intelligent systems engineering, data analytics and visualization, precision health, and cybersecurity.

What will I Learn?

The Indiana-University Bloomington program requires all students to take a course in fundamental statistical skills before moving on to their choice of a  required course in artificial intelligence or machine learning. Students are required to complete six credits within a domain area or concentration. The concentration in Data Analytics and Visualization can be achieved through courses in engineering and information science covering topics such as cloud computing, deep learning systems, search, visualization, and business analytics modeling.  All students in the Intelligent Systems Engineering concentration take the same two courses on the Internet of Things and Autonomous Robotics. The Precision Health concentration is aligned with a university-wide initiative to provide personalized cancer treatment in Indiana using genomic sequencing, and then use data from that treatment to generalize treatment strategies. Students in this concentration focus their attention on the real-world data storage and analytics challenges presented by cancer treatment and pharmaceutical development. Finally, students in the cybersecurity concentration choose from three courses covering security in networked systems, economics of security and systems, and protocol security and information assurance. The final capstone project applies techniques learned in coursework to a real-world problem, allowing students to demonstrate innovation and skill to potential employers.

How much will the program cost?

Students finish their degree within two years or less and pay $1394  per credit for a total of 30 credits, or just over $41,000 for the entire degree. The optional immersion weekend on the Bloomington campus is an added cost. 

How does the program fit into my life?

Students can enter the program in Fall, Spring or Summer semesters.  All courses are asynchronous, meaning that instructors create learning materials such as lectures, activities, quizzes, assignments, and group discussions in weekly modules, and students are responsible for completing the module on their own schedule within the given week.  No campus visits are required, but students can attend one or more optional immersion weekends on the Indiana University-Bloomington campus, where they will work on real-world datasets and problems and attend presentations by national experts. Because of the project-based nature of the IU-Bloomington program, students can expect to need to schedule time to work with classmates or meet with instructors. 

Summary

The Indiana-University Bloomington MSDS program will attract aspiring data scientists who want a rigorous academic curriculum that offers lots of options for specialization and electives, alongside fascinating challenges using real-world data and real-world problems. The emphasis on serving citizens and communities through data science sets this program apart, as does the available concentration in Precision Health, focusing on data-intensive cancer research applications of data science. The program is at the higher end of cost per credit and provides less introductory-level required coursework for students who may have a less technical and quantitative background.  But if you are ready to dive in deep, this program might be for you.