Master of Data Science From the University of British Columbia - 12 Reasons Why
Canada’s Big Data Consortium has estimated that Canada will see a shortage of up to 19,000 professionals with data and analytical skills. So data science is the future, especially in Canada’s job market. And there might be nowhere better to study for a master’s in data science in Canada than at the University of British Columbia to secure your future career. But before we get into how it does that, here are the basic program details you need to know.
About the Master of Data Science (MDS) at the University of British Columbia.
Program details:The master’s in Data Science is a 10-month, full-time, accelerated program at UBC. It’s a truly professional program that offers a short-term commitment for long-term gain.
Course structure:The program structure includes 24 one-credit courses and a 6-credit capstone project at the end. The one-credit courses are scheduled 4 at a time, and last 4 weeks each. At the end of the 6, 4-week segments, the students are allowed to apply their newly acquired knowledge, while working with other students with real-life data sets in their capstone project. All courses are lab-oriented and delivered in-person, along with some blended online content. Here’s the course structure you can expect as part of the MDS program.
The program tuition is much lower than the cost of most other graduate programs in Canada. And it is an affordable option for even international students who want to pursue Masters’s in Data Science in Canada. As of 2022, the tuition fee for the program is:
- 33,784.83 CAD for domestic students (i.e.: Canadian citizens and permanent residents)
- 49,644.06 CAD for international students
Scholarships:You will be elated to know that UBS has program-specific scholarships that you can apply for once you are admitted into the Master of Data Science program. The MDS program offers the following scholarships:
- MDS international scholarship: Up to 25,000 CAD, offered annually.
- MDS domestic scholarship: Up to 25,000 CAD, offered annually.
- MDS scholarship for indigenous students: Up to the full cost of the tuition fee, offered annually.
- MDS scholarship for black or POC students: Up to the full cost of the tuition fee, offered annually. (Available for both domestic and international students.)
Location:The program is offered on both the UBC Vancouver campus and the UBC Okanagan campus. Now let’s get into why the program is your best bet for a Master of Data Science in Canada.
Why MDS at the University of British Columbia?
1. Accelerated learning:Most other data science programs last 2 full years and cost almost double the tuition fee. But MDS at the University of British Columbia is designed to be an intensive 10-month program that gives you all the knowledge and skills you need in a short period. Thus saving you both time and money. Don’t worry if you don’t come from a background in data science or CS. This program was designed to deliver the same benefits even for students with no background in data science. Like alumni, Rain Shen came with a bachelor’s in food science and seamlessly transitioned into data science through the 10-month MDS program. And Subi Zhang, a 2018 student, who came from a background in HR and management, and now works as a Data Science Consultant at Deloitte. Or Jordan Dubchak, who studied biology at the undergrad level, and after passing out of the MDS program was able to secure a position as a Data Scientist at Teck Resources Ltd. And hundreds of other alumni, who used this MDS degree to transition into the field of data science and have since excelled in the field.
2. Practical and industry-focused programThe MDS program is designed to give students an incredibly practical and diverse data science exposure to help them be fully industry-ready. Real-world data sets are integrated into all courses in the program. This gives give students practical experience across a range of domains. And focused one-credit courses allow you in-depth focus on a limited set of topics at one time. And their students can’t seem to stop raving about it… “The program exposed us to most of the big topics in computational linguistics such as sentiment analysis, text classification, or machine translation…I believe many companies would be ecstatic to find talent fresh out of university with these skills,” says Ravi Gill, who is now a Validation Engineer at Intel Corporation. Or as Niki Hajmoshir says, “What I like about this program is that we get more hands-on experience and work with data sets and corpora so when we go into the industry we won’t be lost because we know how to handle these things”.
3. Real-world experience with industry partners:Following that ideology, UBS also gives students the opportunities to learn outside the classroom by working to find solutions to real-world problems. They do this by connecting students to their extensive network of industry partners. These partners offer students the chance to get real-world experience in a variety of different roles and industries through their eight-week capstone project. This capstone project allows students to work in teams and apply their skills to solve a real-world project for the partner company. This helps them build industry contacts and become future-ready for their post-graduation lives.
4. Phenomenal faculty:All MDS courses are taught by a core faculty team who are dedicated to teaching MDS full-time. Thus they can provide focused one-to-one support to students throughout the program. Another alumni, Juan Roesel, attests to this. He says, “While several resources on the Internet can help people get the knowledge and skills needed to become a Data Scientist or NLP engineer, I think the structure of the MDS-CL program and the quality of the teaching staff take the learning experience to a higher level.”
5. Smaller class sizes:MDS is the University of British Columbia is focused on making the entire program the best possible environment for students to learn and excel. So the cohort size in the university is restricted to keep it an intimate class size. “The smaller cohort in the Okanagan makes it more personable and it makes me feel more connected to the program,” says Christian Hluchy, a graduate of the MDS program at UBC. But it goes much beyond just helping students feel more connected. It has been proven by numerous studies that students tend to learn faster and perform better in smaller classes. They get more attention, can interact better with their peers, participate more, and even receive better feedback to improve.
6. Diverse cohort groupIn college, you don’t just learn from your professors. A lot of your learning and growth happens with your peers. And the MDS program at UBS gives you a ripe garden of learning with the diversity of their cohort group. You get to learn from classmates who come from a wide range of academic backgrounds and experiences. We’re talking about people who come from business, computer science, and behavioral neuroscience, to law and biology backgrounds.
7. Post-graduation job opportunities:
And last, but not least, we come down to what happens after you graduate from this well-rounded program.
The University of British Columbia was ranked top #38 in the world, in terms of graduate employability ranking by QS
And the Master of Data Science program does justice to this reputation. They offer:
● Individual Career Advising:All students have access to the program’s dedicated career advisor. The advisor guides them on each stage of their job search or identifying future career prospects.
● Career-Related Workshops:The program hosts regular career workshops on topics like: job search and networking skills
- LinkedIn profile writing
- resume and cover letter writing
- behavioral interview skills
- technical interview skills practice, etc.