4 Ways to Prepare for Data Science Bootcamp

Imogen Crispe

Written By Imogen Crispe

Last updated on September 10, 2019

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Can anyone learn data science? What do you need to know before you go to data science bootcamp? Do you need a quantitative degree? We asked Metis’s Chief Data Scientist, Deborah Berebichez, how to know if you’re ready for a data science bootcamp, and how to set yourself up for success before the first day of class. Watch the video or read the summary.

Tip 1: Understand what a data science bootcamp is

  • Consider your options:
    • A master's or undergraduate degree takes 2-4 years
    • If your goals are to get a job in industry quickly, a bootcamp is a great option. A bootcamp is an intensive 12-week course, where you emerge with practical skills.
  • You’ll learn these technical skills at a data science bootcamp:
    • The basic tools of dealing with data:
      • Web scraping
      • Github
      • Where to look for data
      • How to clean data
    • Algorithms:
      • Linear regression
      • Singular value decomposition
      • Machine learning – supervised and unsupervised
      • Deep learning
      • Big data
  • Wondering what Data Science looks like in the real world? Here’s an example: You use Facebook every day to keep in touch with friends. But Data Scientists at Facebook are building the algorithms to place ads, engage communities, and optimize newsfeeds.

Tip 2: A little preparation goes a long way

  • Before a data science bootcamp, you need a college-level understanding of:

    • Linear Algebra
    • Probability
    • Statistics
    • Calculus
    • Python
  • That doesn’t mean you need a college degree in those subjects. You can learn on your own:
  • Other useful attributes for data science students:
    • Curiosity
    • Practical/technical abilities
    • Be able to gather data for analysis
    • Explain a project you’re interested in

Tip 3:  Embrace the data science attitude

  • Students at data science bootcamps come from varied backgrounds:

    • Mathematics
    • Economics
    • Journalism
    • Marketing
    • English
    • Banking
    • Healthcare

“Being a good data scientist means that you can turn data into actionable insights for business.”

  • More important than your background is your attitude. Successful data scientists master these three areas:
    • Use a computing language such as Python or R
    • Learn the math behind algorithms
    • Communicate insights to stakeholders

Tip 4: Set yourself up for success

“Let me be honest: a data science bootcamp is going to be hard!”

  • You need 3 elements to succeed:
    • Curiosity to analyze data
    • Grit to keep going
    • Passion to discover the world
  • To get over the challenges at a data science bootcamp, success also requires:
    • Creativity
    • Hard work
    • A good attitude
  • Curiosity, grit, passion will get you over the initial challenges you’ll face in a data science bootcamp

Follow Deborah on Twitter @debbiebere. Deborah will also be a panelist at Metis’s free online conference Demystifying Data Science on September 27! Read Metis reviews on Course Report.

About The Author

Imogen Crispe

Imogen Crispe

Imogen is a writer and content producer who loves exploring technology and education in her work. Her strong background in journalism, writing for newspapers and news websites, makes her a contributor with professionalism and integrity.

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