Master’s in Data Science in USA

ms in data science in usa

An increased emphasis on technology and the importance of accurate data for organizations have triggered the importance of data science programs in recent times. The United States of America (USA) holds a prominent rank in analytics and data science globally. Over 40 USA universities are featured among the world’s top 100 universities in Times Higher Education World University Rankings of 2022. Undoubtedly, the USA is the dream destination for post-graduation courses in data science. International students tend to choose the USA for data science due to the global brand exposure, academic excellence, finest scope for research, and highest-paid job opportunities. 

Keep reading to learn more about the top data science universities, admission requirements, documents, job opportunities, and highlights of studying master’s in data science in USA. 

Read More: Student Visa for the USA- Fee & Application Procedure

Why study MS in data science in the USA? 

  • The presence of popular universities makes the USA a leading destination to pursue a Master’s degree in data science. Out of globally ranked 100 universities, 40 universities belong to the USA. These 40 globally ranked universities like Standford University, Rochester University, New York University, and Columbia University are the notable institutions that offer data science programs.
  • Academic excellence is the specialty of the USA. The academic system of the USA is reputed and renowned, with universities having strong alumni records. In postgraduate courses like ‘Masters in Data Science’, students get time to study all the related subjects and then choose a major or specialization as per their interest and understanding. This speaks about the flexibility in an education system that offers enough scope for excellent results. 
  • The United States of America is a leading economy with a promising job market for Data Scientists. The average base salary of a data scientist in the USA is USD 124,283 (INR 92,51,048) per year. This makes the US a preferred destination for students who are willing to settle down in the US. 
  • Data science job opportunities are the most demanding job opportunities in the US after computer science. Data scientist jobs have been ranked number 2 by Glassdoor for three consecutive years from 2017-20. 
  • The American universities have renowned faculties with years of experience and skills to train the students according to the market standards. The faculties are aware of the requirements of the global brand; hence, it becomes easy for students to work with international brands. 
  • Excellent scope for research and development! After Germany, the United States of America is the best destination for research opportunities. Data science requires a lot of research and innovation. Hence, the American universities and the Government offer enough opportunities and research prospects to international students. 
  • An excellent campus life with cultural diversity! The USA is a melting pot of different cultures, races, and ethnicities. Students from all over the globe form a unique cultural amalgamation for an amazing development of personalities and an interesting campus life. The universities organize many cultural events, seminars, and workshops to ensure enough cultural acceptance. Campus life in the US is matchless. Irrespective of the university, one can always find themselves immersed in the American way of life. 
  • Data science programs in the US are supported with partial and full funding options. Some of the partially and fully funded master’s scholarships in the USA in 2021 are the Department of Energy Computational Science Graduate Fellowship, National GEM Consortium, ACM SIGHPC, Bill Caspar Memorial Diversity Scholarship, and Open Data Science Conference Scholarship. Meritorious and needy students can avail fully funded scholarship opportunities. This helps the economically backward classes with merit, to take up quality education abroad.
  • An ample number of internship programs and live projects in the data science curriculum offer the students international industry exposure. The top brands that hire students for internship programs are EY, Deloitte, Stanley Morgan, Accenture, IBM, Disney, and Cisco. 

Read More: Study Options in the USA for Indian Students After 12th Commerce

Top universities for data science in the USA

Listed below are some of the top data science universities in the USA:

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT): Getting an MIT data science master’s degree is a dream for STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) background students with interest in data and analytics. The best part is, MIT offers a master’s in data science in just 12 months. The tuition fee is around INR 63,24,812. MIT is a well recognized American university holding a rank #1 in the USA and 5th globally for data science. 

Northwestern University: Data science course at Northwestern University is a 12-month program, available offline and online. The tuition fee for a master’s in data science is around INR 41,96,782. Northwestern University has been ranked 17th  in the USA and 24th worldwide for data science programs. 

Columbia University: Columbia University is the 5th oldest private university in the USA. The duration of Columbia University data science master’s course is 18 months. The tuition fee is INR 46,14,131. The university is located in New York City and ranked 17th in the USA. To secure admission at Columbia University, GMAT and GRE scores are essential. 

University of Southern California: The University of South California data science course is a 24 months master’s degree with an average cost of INR 47,97,610. It is a full-time classroom program with endless job opportunities. The eligibility criteria is a GPA of 3.55 out of 4 scales, with GMAT and GRE score requirements. 

University of Minnesota: The eligibility criteria for the University of Minnesota data science master’s program is 3.46 GPA, 321 GRE, and 703 GMAT mark. For the part-time data science courses, students need 3.2 for GPA and 660 for GMAT scores. The tuition fee is INR 49,55,000. There are scholarship programs available for meritorious students. 

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Fees of MS degree in data science in the USA 

Studying in the US is expensive and taking up a STEM background course is even more costly. A data science course in the USA would cost something between INR 30,00,000-55,00,000 on average. To make it affordable, there are various partial and full funding options in public and private universities in the USA. Stanford and MIT offer 100% funding to meritorious international students, being the hub for the cheapest data science masters in the USA. 

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Admission requirements for masters in data science in the US

American universities hold a lot of prestige and recognition globally. International students need to fulfill the eligibility criteria and admission requirements to get admission to American universities. Requirements for admission to the best universities to pursue MS in Data Science vary from each other. To meet the competitive edge, students need to ensure that they meet all the admission requirements. 

  • GRE and GMAT scores are essential to take admission in data science. The American universities need the GRE score to understand the academic proficiency in students to study masters in data science. The minimum score is 280, and for universities like Stanford and MIT, the GRE score requirement is above 310. 
  • Students interested in data science programs need to pass higher secondary education with compulsory subjects like Physics, Chemistry, and Maths. 
  • A full-time graduation degree of 4 years from a STEM background is a compulsory prerequisite for students applying to various data science programs. A BTech or BE degree in Computer Science, Physical Science, Mathematics, Mathematics and Computing, Statistics or Engineering is a must-have.
  • An excellent academic record is an important admission criterion. Students need to have a good GPA in their bachelor’s degree and high school. A GPA of a minimum of 3 out of 4 is a compulsory requirement for international students in graduation. For ranked educational institutions like Stanford and MIT, the GPA requirement will be higher. 
  • English language proficiency is important for non-native English-speaking students. Therefore, the test scores of IELTS and TOEFL examinations are essential. The top-ranked universities ask for a score above 7 in IELTS. 
  • Students need to have all the documents in the right order. The academic transcripts should be original. Evidence of financial resources should be submitted. Along with this, two letters of recommendation, statement of purpose, and essays should be submitted as required by the respective university. The GRE, GMAT, TOEFL, and IELTS scores should be submitted to every university that you apply to. Lastly, the application form and fee receipts are important to confirm registration. 
  • Prior work experience is accepted and required by various data science universities in the USA. Previous work experience waives off the GRE score under multiple circumstances. Students with a low GRE score can study data science courses if they have prior work experience. 
  • Statement of Purpose (SOP) is the unique statement where international students need to state their purpose, goals, and expectations out of a data science program from the USA. The SOP should also mention a candidate’s goals, achievements, and experiences. The SOP you write increases the chances of getting an admission. 
  • A letter of recommendation is important. Minimum 2 to 3 letters of recommendation is compulsory for universities. The LOR should be from respective faculty members or ex-employers. 

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Job opportunities after masters in data science in the US

Employment opportunities for data science offer great Return on Investment (ROI). At an entry-level, a data science graduate can earn up to $95,000 (INR 70,70,057) whereas a managerial post can earn up to $195,000 (INR 1,45,12,202) yearly. For the last five years, the American job market has been flourishing with ample job opportunities in data science. Data science and big data are high demanding career opportunities with the top global brands. Find out the jobs after MS in data science in the USA.

Also Read: Part-Time Job Options in the USA for International Students

Top jobs after MS in data science in USA 

  • Analytics Engineer: $111,480 (INR 82,96,224)
  • Statistician – $72,100 (INR 53,65,606)
  • Business Analyst: $72,000 (INR 53,58,164)
  • Business Intelligence (BI) Analyst : $67,600 (INR 50,30,288)
  • Data Analyst: $73372 (INR 54,59,797)
  • Big Data Engineer : $114,800 (INR 85,42,561)
  • Data Scientist: $96494 (INR 71,79,091)
  • Database Administrator (DBA): $72,800 (INR 54,16,193)
  • Data Engineer : $116,591 (INR 86,74,166)
  • Data Architect : $115,800 (INR 86,16,742)
  • Data Visualisation Specialist: $76065 (INR 56,60,038)
  • Machine Learning Engineer : $111,600 (INR 83,04,217)

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Data science has a vibrant future. Pursuing a master’s in data science from prestigious American universities is the best career decision one can take. As per the present market scenario, it is wise to choose a career in the young fold emerging Data Science field from a globally ranked USA university. 

Masters in Data Science in USA: FAQs

Is Data Science in Demand in the USA?

The USA is the largest analytics and data science market in the entire world. The developed economy of the US offers a large pool of upcoming data science job opportunities. It is also one of the most mature markets in analytics and data science evolution. It is home to 40 globally ranked universities with the highest paying jobs. According to Glassdoor, data science jobs are the second most demanding ones after computer science.

Is GRE Required for MS in Data Science in the USA?

Yes, GRE is a compulsory admission criterion for American universities. The score requirement for the top-ranked universities is above 310. However, some universities waive off the GRE score if the students have prior work experience or a brilliant GPA in graduation.

Is MS in Data Science Expensive?

Yes, MS in data science is an expensive course in the USA. It would cost between INR 30,00,000 to 55,00,000. However, there are scholarships and full funding opportunities for meritorious international students. As per the evolving market, a data science from a USA university is a good return to investment, as the jobs are the highest paying.

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