In most cases, you will need at least a bachelor’s degree in a related field to get an entry-level job as a data scientist. However, for many non-entry level jobs in the data science field, you will need a master’s degree. Roughly four out of every five data scientists have a master’s degree.

Data scientists are highly sought after in today’s data and tech-heavy economy, and their salaries and job growth reflect that. Data engineers are responsible for managing high amounts of constantly-changing data. This group uses their expertise and experience to develop, deploy, manage and optimize data pipelines and infrastructure. According to a recent study, most companies are only using about 12 percent1of the data they have on hand – even though data is widely considered one of the best ways to make informed business decisions. In some cases, under-utilizing this data can mean missed information – and untapped business possibilities. In terms of landing a job, it can help to bring examples of the real-life work you have completed into your interview.

Earn a career credential and match with employers

Advances in technology have resulted in what seems like an endless amount of data. From personal wearable devices and laptops to large-scale manufacturing projects and government programs, our world relies on computer systems and technologies to manage and secure data. Hiring managers are looking for a demonstration of the skills required for the job.

2021 US Bureau of Labor Statistics salary and employment figures for data scientists reflect national data, not school-specific information. Prepare to use analytics to tackle policy challenges in a range of industries, including education, health care, security, the environment, and criminal justice. Gain expertise in analytical methods to develop as a leader in data-driven processes for creating policies and making decisions.

Take the next step toward your future.

Experience plays a major role in the jump from entry-level to junior data scientist. A bachelor’s or master’s degree in data science or a similar field may be required or preferred. At the junior level, professionals likely already have two to three years of experience with strong technical skills in marketing analysis, statistical and machine learning modeling, optimization, and simulation. Depending on the industry, professionals may also have specialized knowledge of this sector and its business-specific problems. There are opportunities to continue honing technical and leadership skills, considering mid-level data scientists can advance to senior and managerial positions.

  • Learn the latest news and best practices about data science, big data analytics, artificial intelligence, data security, and more.
  • According to a 2022 Burtch Works study, over 90% of data scientists they surveyed hold a graduate degree.
  • The first step to success as a data scientist is to develop your current abilities in any form of data science sector you desire.
  • Complete a bachelor degree in a relevant field, such as computer science, IT, mathematics or statistics.
  • If you are thinking about becoming a data scientist, you could be setting yourself up for a satisfying career.
  • To the best of our knowledge, all content is accurate as of the date posted, though offers contained herein may no longer be available.
  • A data scientist’s primary goal is to use data to answer questions, make predictions, and solve problems.

Strong analytical and problem-solving skills are crucial for understanding business challenges and devising data-driven solutions. Additionally, communication and collaboration skills are essential for presenting findings and working effectively in multidisciplinary teams. Applicants with less advanced or less technically relevant degrees can offset this disadvantage with a great project portfolio that demonstrates their advanced skills and experience doing relevant data science work. Most data scientist roles will require at least a Bachelor’s degree.

Job opportunities

Data scientists are often expected to form their own questions about the data, while data analysts might support teams that already have set goals in mind. A data scientist might also spend more time developing models, using machine learning, or incorporating advanced programming to find and analyze data. Besides having a demonstrated proficiency in mathematics, data scientists must also be fluent in several programming languages, technologies, and skills. While specific skill requirements may vary between jobs and companies, most professionals will need to know some, if not all, of those listed below. Data science professionals work with large amounts of data, develop strategies to improve these systems and help businesses and organizations run more effectively and efficiently.

how to become a data scientist

Here at Dataquest, we have an online community that learners can use to receive feedback on projects, discuss tough data-related problems, and build relationships with data professionals. Not only does building projects help you practice your skills and understand real data science work, it also helps you build a portfolio to show potential employers. When I was learning, I tried to follow various online data science guides, but I ended up bored and without any actual data science skills to show for my time. I then became a machine learning engineer, data science consultant, and now CEO of Dataquest.

Python for Data Science

Tableau is a business intelligence and data visualization tool that can provide detailed reporting. It’s often used by data scientists to show the results of their analysis in a way that’s easier for people to understand. A Python for data science course covers the fundamentals of the Python programming language in computer science.

how to become a data scientist

Advanced degrees, such as a Master’s or Ph.D., can further enhance your prospects and provide deeper domain knowledge in specialized areas. Experienced data scientists with management skills can move into director of data science and similar director and executive-level roles. The ones that find critical insights that save them money or make their customers happier.

Fundamental Statistics

This growth also looks set to continue when you factor in the increased importance of data skills. There’s quite a bit of overlap between Data Scientists and Machine Learning Engineers; both work with data to produce insights. The difference is that Data Scientists uncover insights to present to people , while Machine Learning Engineers design the tools that can discover insights and generate results. Machine Learning Engineers design software that can uncover insights and learn from results as more and more data is gathered. Data Analysts can take complex information and turn it into stats that business execs can use to inform strategy and planning, often in the form of easy-to-understand data visualizations like charts and graphs. Explore BrainStation’s global community network, including our on-campus and online bootcamps, certificate courses, and thought leadership events.

how to become a data scientist

In data science, industry professionals must be able to manage and comprehend massive amounts of unstructured data. Data wrangling refers to the process of cleaning, unifying, and understanding the available data. Data scientists also identify the patterns, trends, and outliers while wrangling a data set. OOPs are designed to allow programmers to structure, organize, update, and modify programs efficiently. Although it was initially invented to develop programs for handheld devices, Java is now often used when creating web applications. Within data science, Java is used to clean, export, analyze, and visualize data.

Artificial Intelligence

The median annual salary for data scientists is $100,910 as of May 2021 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics . However, this figure can grow dramatically depending on the size and sector of the enterprise. Additional factors include a data scientist’s educational level, years of experience, location, certifications, and the involvement one has in professional organizations. Additional education and experience are key factors how to become a data scientist that lead to being promoted or becoming a data scientist in high demand. Coupling strong technical skills with project management and leadership experience will generally chart a course towards more significant opportunities and higher compensation. In theory, the number of soft skills that can help you get into data science is infinite ⁠— but there are a few that are essential for those looking to break into the field.