“Without big data, you are blind and deaf and in the middle of a freeway.” – Geoffrey Moore
Data Science has become the driving force of every business today. In today’s cutthroat digital world, where data is being generated at an unprecedented rate, is the perfect time for those interested in pursuing a career in data science. As more and more businesses and companies become reliant on data to drive decision-making, the demand for data scientists is expected to grow exponentially.
What is Data Science?
Data Science is the science of data, it is an interdisciplinary field that takes data in its raw form and processes it into easily perceivable information. It uses several techniques tools, algorithms, processes, and systems with the aim of discovering useful information and making informed decisions.
The rapid technological advancements of today have given rise to an overflow of data in several sectors of the economy and the ever-increasing number of organizations and domains rely on these massive streams of data to make business decisions.
India is the second largest data science hub in the world, and according to estimates, there will be over 11 million job openings by the year 2026. Recent years have also seen an estimated increase of 45% in the jobs in the data science industry.
How to start a career in Data Science?
While it’s undeniable that there has been a rapid rise in the number of colleges and institutions offering data science and analytics training, the large gap in the job market has been linked to the lack of institutions that properly prepare candidates to solve real-world problems.
Since Data Science techniques are applied to make decisions in a multitude of domains and business functions, in addition to the technical knowledge of data analytics, it is imperative for one to possess the pertinent domain knowledge as well. While machine learning algorithms like regression or, classification can be used to predict some test data, the true power of an algorithm can only be harnessed along with domain knowledge.
While an advanced degree seems to be the logical way to pursue a career in a traditional field, it is becoming increasingly apparent that, in the case of such a new-age career, having the relevant technical skills supported by relevant domain knowledge is a critical factor in landing a data science job. While pursuing a degree seems like the right way to pursue a career in this field, it is becoming evident that in this new age, it is more important to possess the relevant technical skills and relevant domain knowledge to excel in this field.
Be it at the Undergraduate, Post Graduate Level, Diplomas or Certifications for Working Professionals, there are an increasing number of opportunities available to anyone who wants to kick start their career in data science.
At the Undergraduate level, one has two options:
- Pursuing a Bachelor’s Degree in Data Science.
- Pursuing a Bachelor’s Degree in any other related field would either help the technical skills or the relevant domain knowledge. Eg. Computer Science, IT, Mathematics, Statistics, Economics, Finance, etc. This can later be followed by a Postgraduate Course specializing in Data Science or Business Analytics.
For graduates and working professionals, there are a plethora of options available these days in the form of Full-Time PG Courses, Diplomas, and Certifications. These are increasing at an incredible rate to help people apply their existing domain knowledge to make data-driven decisions.
Let us dive deeper into the options that one has at each level:
Here is a list of undergraduate courses that you can pursue to enhance your knowledge and make a mark in the field:
- BSc with Data sciences as specialization
The course is usually designed with a combination of programming knowledge, mathematics, and an introduction to business communication through data. The best part about this course is that it focuses very clearly on the field of Data Sciences and gets updated frequently as per the innovations in the sector.
- Colleges like SP Jain, Christ University and the Great Lakes Institute offer B.Sc. in Data Science with a unique data science specialization for people pursuing a bachelor’s in science in graduation.
- BSc in other related fields
Data Science is a field that is still evolving in India. As of now, not every major Indian university offers a bachelor’s degree in Data Science specifically. You can also pursue a bachelor’s of science degree in other related fields like statistics, computer science, information technology or Mathematics which would directly add to your skills and help you take up this career option.
- BBA with specialization in business analytics, data analytics, business intelligence or data science is also another great choice if you are looking to study both business and data science. You can look into courses offered by colleges like Mahindra University School of Business, S P Jain, O P Jindal, Amity Univeristy and others.
In addition to the conventional MSc. in Data Sciences or other related fields, here are some other postgraduate courses:
- Executive programs in Big Data and Machine learning
With Artificial Intelligence (AI) taking over different processes and automating business processes, machine learning is one of the most sought after courses in the field of Data Sciences. At the postgraduate level, you can specialize in Big Data and Machine learning in order to be a Data Scientist.
This course is offered by various universities including NMIMS and IMT with opportunities even on an international level.
- Certificate Programs in Business Analytics
This course combines the acumen of the Data Science industry with its application for various management related business decisions. If Business Intelligence interests you as a career option and you want a course that is detailed yet short, you can go for these certificate programs to specialize in the field.
The best universities like XLRI and IIT offer a postgraduate certificate program in Business Analytics for Management Decisions (PGCBAMD).
- PGDM or MBA in Business Analytics
As compared to certificate programs, this is a more detailed course that provides an in-depth exposure into the field along with the multiple opportunities to work on, after the course. In addition to the technical Data Science skills, pursuing a PGDM or MBA would also empower one with management skills making them a prominent candidate for leadership roles in top organizations.
Some universities like IIM, Great Lakes, IMT, Reva University offer a full-time postgraduate diploma (one-year duration) or Masters’ in Business Administration (two-year duration) degree in Data Science/Business Analytics.
In addition to being a part of one of the fastest-growing industries with a wide range of applications across several industries, a career in the field of data sciences has been remarked as one of the most extraordinary jobs in this century. With the continuous evolution of Artificial Intelligence, there will be many more applications of the Data Sciences that can make the jobs of many individuals easier.
If you are planning to pursue a career in this field, make sure you do your research and select the best courses for yourself as per your interests and needs. And in order to help you gain in-depth information about what Data Science is, the career opportunities and the various colleges that provide the above-mentioned courses, read our blog on The Power of Data.
Are you still confused regarding your decision to plan a career in this field; then you should join our ‘Virtual Internship Programs’ in ‘Data Science’ and get yourself upskilled and certified by Mindler and resolve all your doubts.