Master's in Data Science Programs in Maryland

Sep 24, 2019

If you're looking to earn a master's degree in data science, in order to use data to help companies and organizations solve real=world problems, Maryland has some options for you with different types of degree programs.

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Data scientists, at the most basic level, get information out of data to help businesses, the government and other groups strategize and be more effective. Data science takes knowledge of computer science, statistics, and business. Some Maryland universities offer master of science (MS) degree programs for data science and others offer master of professional studies (MPS) degree programs, which are generally designed with careers in mind and emphasize learning that will be applied to specific jobs.

Maryland Schools with Master's Degree Programs in Data Science

Johns Hopkins University

The Johns Hopkins University Whiting School of Engineering in Baltimore offers a master of science degree in data science, with the option to do a combination of on-site and online classes. The program aims to cover not only the theory of data science but applying it as well, to help students in careers as data scientists. This program consists of 10 courses, which students have five years to complete. According to the university's website, its goal is for students to graduate knowing how to discover relationships in data sets, create models to solve problems in real life and use applied mathematics and computer science to analyze data. Required courses are on topics such as statistical models, data visualization, algorithms for data science and more. Elective courses include big data statistics, machine learning, data mining and more.

Loyola University of Maryland

Loyola University of Maryland in Baltimore also offers a master of science degree in data science, with a mix of in-person and online classes. It will prepare students to use the computer programming language Python and statistical models to address data. Loyola's program also brings up ethical questions of data science work and encourages its students to work with nonprofits. It's a program of 31 or 34 credits, and students can choose one of two tracks: technical specialization or data analytics specialization. Both specializations end in a capstone research project with local industry, government or nonprofit partner during which students will use what they've learned about data science to solve problems. Students can choose a two-, three-, or four-year track to complete the program. Courses include introductions to programming and data science, data mining, statistical models, machine learning and more.

University of Maryland

The state's flagship university in College Park offers a master of professional studies degree in data science and analytics. The course includes 30 credits and ends with a capstone project. It delves into theory and application of data science. The courses in the program cover the basics of data science, data mining, big data systems, statistical models and more.

University of Maryland, Baltimore County

The University of Maryland, Baltimore County, also offers a master of professional studies degree in data science at its Catonsville and Rockville campuses. It can be completed either full-time or part-time, with evening and online courses designed for professionals who work full time. Part-time students complete the program in an average of three years. Courses cover topics including basics of data science, machine learning, legal and ethical considerations for data science, big data processing and more.

Program Admission Requirements

The schools will have different requirements, but generally, they'll want some kind of math and computer programming background and all will require official university transcripts. The GRE is generally not required. Specific requirements by school are listed below.

Johns Hopkins University

Johns Hopkins University requires previous education (with a grade of at least a B-) in multivariate calculus, discrete mathematics (linear algebra or differential equations are also accepted), computer programming languages Java or C++, and data structures. Students who don't meet these prerequisites can still be accepted to the program as long as they agree to fulfill them before starting the program. Also, for any master's degree program at the school, applicants are required to have had a least a 3.0 GPA in the last half of their undergraduate career. (However, work experience or graduate work may be considered for candidates who don't meet the GPA requirement.) Applicants can also submit a resume highlight work experience if they think it will help their application.

Loyola University of Maryland

Loyola University of Maryland requires applicants to have taken introductory statistics at a college level and also calculus. Applicants who don't meet the statistics requirement can take a course to satisfy the requirement before starting the program. The university also requires an essay about why the applicant wants to enter the program. A resume highlighting professional work is optional.

University of Maryland

The University of Maryland requires previous coursework including calculus, linear algebra, and introductory statistics. It also requires applicants to be proficient in computer programming languages, either through coursework or work experience. Applicants will need to submit a statement of purpose, resume and a description of research and work experience.

University of Maryland, Baltimore County

The University of Maryland, Baltimore County, requires a bachelor's degree in any area with a GPA of 3.0 or higher. It also requires a statement of purpose and a resume. Plus, students need to have taken previous college courses in calculus and statistics, and have computer programming knowledge through either coursework or professional experience.

Overall, Maryland offers both masters of science and masters of professional studies degrees for those who want to pursue data science careers. No matter the program, applicants will need to start with previous math and computer science knowledge, and although individual programs vary, most have courses in statistical models, data mining and big data processing.

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