Data Science

Data science career track

What Is Data Science?

Data science is a multidisciplinary field that combines computer science and statistics. With so much data being produced every day, data science makes it possible to draw useful insights from datasets which may be too large for traditional statistics to analyze. This data is often referred to as “big data,” and can include anything from analyzing complex genomic structures to interpreting handwriting to optimizing a marketing strategy. And data science is not limited to just numbers! Data science finds patterns in all unstructured sets, including text, images, and audio files. 

Data Science Jobs

With everyone from businesses to non-profits to the government collecting data, there is high demand for turning that data into smart business decisions. There is a wide variety of data science jobs, and if there’s one thing that we’ve learned after interviewing so many data science bootcamp graduates, it’s that no two companies use the exact same job titles. Common job responsibilities of data scientists include data engineering, data cleaning, and data analysis. Here is a list of the most frequent data science job titles for bootcampers:

  • Junior Data Scientist
  • Senior Data Scientist
  • Data Engineer
  • Machine Learning Engineer
  • Data Scientist/Software Engineer
  • Big Data Analytics Consultant
  • Data Science Instructor
  • Decision Scientist
  • Data Analyst
  • Business Analyst
  • Business Intelligence Analyst
  • Data Journalist
  • Financial Analyst
  • Product Analyst
  • Database Administrator

Data Science Salaries

Data Science Job Average Salary
Data Science Analyst $80,265
Senior Data Scientists $105,909
Data Engineers $105,909


Data Science Skills

According to Josh Wills, Director of NYC Data Science Academy, a data scientist is a “person who is better at statistics than any software engineer and better at software engineering than any statistician.” While math skills and coding skills are an essential part of data science, business intelligence and a scientific approach are key to making sense of data. Most data science students have a previous background in STEM, but overall, data science students and professionals are detail-oriented and excel at problem-solving, logical reasoning, and communication.

Here is a quick list of data science skills and technologies used in the field and often taught at data science bootcamps:

  • SQL - SQL stands for Structured Query Language. SQL is designed for managing data in relational database management systems. SQL extracts data for data analytics and reporting. 
  • Hadoop - Hadoop is a suite of technologies used to manage data and execute programs in a cluster. Hadoop includes a file system designed for large datasets, the MapReduce system which allows for running programs in parallel, the SQL-like Hive database for querying data in a cluster, and other components.
  • Spark - Spark is a system for writing parallel programs to run in clusters. Spark has a powerful machine learning library, mllib, and can be used with R. 
  • Python and R - Both languages are equally important in data science! Python is used for computer science components of a data scientist’s job. R is used for building statistics packages and visualizations. Combining both Python and R greatly increases their range of capabilities.
  • Machine Learning - Machine learning is a set of algorithms that is put in place to analyze large sets of data. Many of these algorithms are built so that the machine learns to feed better data into later models, and ultimately make predictions about future events. 
  • Natural Language Processing - Natural Language Processing (NLP) is a method for pre-processing text to turn it into numerical data. NLP is also known as computational linguistics.
  • Data science math includes linear algebra, calculus, statistics, and probability.

How to Become a Data Scientist

 Many Data Scientists start their careers in academia – if you have a bachelor’s degree or PhD in a quantitative field, then you’re already close to a data science career. A data science fellowship like The Data Incubator or Insight Data Science would be fantastic options. 

Most data science bootcamps require students to have a degree in STEM and an aptitude for math and statistics. If you don’t have a quantitative degree, then you should sharpen your math skills like linear algebra, calculus, statistics, and probability. Then, you’ll be ready to apply to a data science bootcamp. 

Master’s in Data Science vs Data Science Bootcamps

While a Master’s in Computer Science with a specialization in Data Science typically takes 3 years to complete, data science bootcamps are typically intensive 3- to 6-month programs. Data science bootcamps often offer career assistance, and prepare graduates for entry-level and junior data science jobs, such as Data Analyst, Data Scientist, and Data Engineer.

A data science bootcamp is not a traditional coding bootcamp. In addition to learning programming languages, such as Python and/or R, data science bootcamps teach students how to extract valuable knowledge from large datasets using analytical and programming skills. 

Are Data Science Bootcamps Worth It? 

“I would definitely do it again in a heartbeat. It was definitely worth the money. The learning environment, having the type of classmates that you can learn from, the instructors — you definitely couldn’t have gotten it just by learning on your own.” Itelina, graduate of Metis


“I can say that, for me, 100% it was worth it – but I will say the boot camp is also about the work you’re putting in and the goals that you have. I really wanted to sponge off of the people around me – not just the teachers, but also all these PhD students around me. It was the most intelligent group of people I’ve been around in such a small space before. I’ve never had such an amazing opportunity.” Sumanth, graduate of NYC Data Science Academy


“I definitely think I needed Galvanize. Because I wanted to break into the tech industry, having Galvanize on my resume along with the skills I learned there, bolstered my ability to get a job.” Rosie, graduate of Galvanize


“For me, It was totally worth it. I would do it all over again. IE in particular taught me a lot more than how to use Python and SQL. It teaches the technical skills, but at the same time it gives you access to professors that are going to make the process a lot less frustrating and more fun so that you have the motivation to keep going. Plus all of the extras. You get to network with companies and those companies come to give talks. I made a lot of friends in this bootcamp, too.” Inna, graduate of IE Data Science Bootcamp

How much does data science bootcamp cost? 

Full-time, immersive data science bootcamps typically cost between $10,000 and $20,000. Many data science bootcamps offer scholarships and financing options to make tuition affordable. There are also fellowships and free data science bootcamps, such as Insight Data Science and The Data Incubator.

More articles about Data Science


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Learn to Code at These Free Bootcamps

Your guide to free and deferred-payment coding bootcamps.

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The 173 Best Data Science Bootcamps

  • Avg Rating: 5.0 (12 reviews)

    Chicago, Washington4 Courses


    Promotable offers a part-time, 6-week course in data science and data analytics in Chicago, IL, Washington, DC, and San Francisco, CA. The program provides flexible weekday and weekend classes in SQL, machine learning, data visualization, Tableau, and Python, aiming to...

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  • Avg Rating: 5.0 (12 reviews)

    Brussels2 Courses


    Code Belgium is a 9-week, full stack, Interactive Software Engineering Bootcamp in Brussels, Belgium. The bootcamp curriculum covers HTML, CSS, JavaScript, PHP, SQL, Vue.JS, AWS, and more. Code Belgium also offers the Remote Software Engineering program as a one year...

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  • Avg Rating: 4.92 (12 reviews)

    Barcelona, Kuala Lumpur, Online5 Courses


    CodeOp offers full-time and part-time tech bootcamps for women, trans and gender non-conforming people in full stack web development, product management, and data analytics in Barcelona, Spain, and Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia and online. CodeOp’s mission is to encourage...

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  • Avg Rating: 3.92 (12 reviews)

    San Francisco, Online2 Courses


    Make School is a leader in Computer Science education offering practical, product-based educational programs across the world that prepare students for careers in the software industry. Through a 2-year or an 8-week program, students will focus on the coding aspect of...

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  • Avg Rating: 5.0 (11 reviews)

    Warsaw, Budapest, Miskolc, and 2 more...2 Courses


    Codecool is a full-time, 12-month coding course in Hungary, Poland, and Romania with a job guarantee. The developer program is like an apprenticeship, where students will learn Linux, Python, JavaScript, HTML, Java, C# and more. Codecool focuses on the following...

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  • Avg Rating: 4.7 (10 reviews)

    New York City1 Course


    Code Immersives offers a part-time, 11-month web development immersive in New York City. Students receive in-depth training in full stack development, including LAMP (PHP + MySQL) and MERN (MongoDB, Express.js, React.js, Node.js), along with the latest implementations...

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  • Avg Rating: 4.63 (10 reviews)

    Silicon Valley14 Courses


    Magnimind is a 6-week data science bootcamp in Santa Clara, California. Students will learn core data science skills such as Python, SQL, Probability and Statistics, Linear Algebra, and Data Visualization. They will discover how databases are structured and model real...

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  • Avg Rating: 5.0 (9 reviews)

    Online3 Courses


    K2 Data Science is an online part-time, mentor-led program that can be completed over 3-12 months. The experience will turn students into job-ready candidates through self-paced learning. K2 Data Science's goal is to create an online classroom that replicates in-person...

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  • Avg Rating: 5.0 (8 reviews)

    Nairobi3 Courses


    Moringa School is an intensive tech education program based out of Nairobi, Kenya offering a 5-week prep, and 5-month course. Moringa School is a world-class coding accelerator with a direct education to employment model. The focus is to enable a whole generation of...

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  • Avg Rating: 5.0 (8 reviews)

    Atlanta3 Courses


    Lighthouse is a coding bootcamp that offers full-time, 14–16 week, and part-time, 12–26 week courses in software engineering, data science and analytics, digital marketing, and experience design in Atlanta, Georgia. The courses include both front end and back end...

    Read our Full Review of Lighthouse