Masters In Data Science In USA : Top Colleges, Career and Scope

16 mins


The field of masters in data science in USA has become a really interesting topic in the tech world now. People talking about Big data and how data scientists are the future and all kinds of stuff like that.

The fiery trend of data science has turned the heads of lots of young prospects in this marvelous industry of data science. And why wouldn't it?

People connected to the data science industry are making a ton of success. But where to start and how to plan things is where most of these young souls are stuck.

To get the right idea of how to embark on this beautiful journey, let us be your mentor for today, and solve all your doubts regarding masters In data science in USA. We'll provide you with every piece of information that you are going to need to successfully choose the best educational Institute to pursue your MS in Data Science.

The United States of America is widely regarded as the best country in which to pursue a master's degree in data science, so let's dig in and learn more about why.

The Scope of Masters In Data Science in USA

Here's the truth, data science is not at all a new concept or a concept of just this Era. This is a concept that goes way back to the birth of mankind. Since the day intelligent life began its journey they have been collecting data, analyzing it, learning from it, and storing it for the future generations to learn from them.

Everything you see and observe is data. From this you must have figured out by now, that data science is not a topic that can end. Data is an everlasting ever-expanding subject.

And the only thing that is going to happen to data as time goes by, is that we are going to become more and more aware of its importance and more people would want to join in to contribute to the betterment of the future by being part of the data science industry.

Every organization keeps generating gigantic data every day, and to gain benefit from this increasing bundle of data they need data scientists. This creates a huge demand for data scientists and if the data won't die out then neither will the demand for data scientists. Instagram is a key example of how data manipulates and controls the flow of the market.

Whenever you click on something, like a post, scroll through a specific feed then the next time you go back to Instagram it recommends you the same type of content that you generally like or browse.

This is a great example of how big of an impact data science has on our lives.

I think after reading this you are sure of one thing the masters In data science in USA field is never dying. But now let's take a look at what is there to explore in this field.

Career Scope in Data Science in the USA

There are a lot of career options to explore through in the field of masters In data science in USA.

Fun Facts

  • There has been a 650% growth in data Science job opportunities since 2012.
  • The U.S. Beaure of Labour Statistics shows that there will be an estimated 11.5 million jobs in the field of data science by 2026.
  • In India, there has been a 46% surge in employment for data scientists since 2019. And yet there were roughly around 1 lakh positions still open in India before lockdown hit us.

Aren't these numbers mind-blowing?

Well, let's now look at different positions you can be in as a student of masters In data science in USA.

  1. Data Scientist: Data scientists are analytic professionals that use their knowledge of technology and social science to find patterns and tackle data. They identify solutions to corporate difficulties by combining industry knowledge, contextual insight, and skepticism of established assumptions.

  2. Data Analyst: Data analysts are in charge of evaluating data and aiding their teams in producing insights and business plans using data analysis technologies.

  3. Data engineer: The goal of a Data Engineer is to provide an organized, consistent data flow that allows data-driven models such as machine learning and data analysis.

  4. Data Administrator: A database administrator (DBA) is responsible for the administration, management, coordination, and operation of a database management system.

  5. Business Analyst: Business analysts use data analysis to help firms improve their operations, commodities, services, and software.

  6. Data Manager: A Data Manager evaluates the data needs of a firm or research group and uses coding skills to keep databases safe.

  7. Machine Learning Engineer: As a machine learning engineer, you'll be responsible for creating models and algorithms that allow machines to operate autonomously.

The list is never-ending and if we keep this on then you would lose the patience to read the whole article and miss out on a whole lot of other important information. And we'd hate to do that to you.

This is just a glimpse of the wide variety you can explore in the field of Data Science. There is much more than you can discover once you enter the field yourself.

Best Colleges for Masters In Data Science in USA

Before you get, set, GO!!

On your way to becoming the data wizard, you need to learn the spells for it.

Ok, I'll come out of the mythical tone now. For getting a good job you need to be skillfully qualified, to do so you need to have a master's degree in data science from a good and reputed educational institution for a master's in data science.

Now if you go on searching the web or inquiring about where to do master's from you'll only get more confused. It's better to find a trusted brand that has a well-established history of college institutions and abroad placements.

Who can accurately tell you the right institution for you based on facts, your preferences, and testimonials?

Below listed are some of the top universities in the USA for this course. We'll provide every detail that you want to know to decide what will be your dream university.

Stanford University

Stanford has been one of the most successful universities in producing millionaires and billionaires as well as inventors and entrepreneurs. It also has a reputation for attracting students who want to change the world.

Stanford University was founded in 1885, it is the leading institution in Silicon Valley and the world's eighth-oldest university.

The Master's in Data Science program at Stanford University is one of the most prestigious graduate degree programs in the university, but it's also one of the most expensive.

It provides specialization in many fields of data science and has a very astonishing curriculum in data science and offers many different specializations. The most popular amongst their specializations are:

  1. Data Science (MSDS) - This track is designed for students who have an undergraduate degree in computer science or a related field. Students will learn about software systems, machine learning, big data management systems, and other topics that are essential to becoming a successful data scientist or business analyst.
  2. Business Analytics (MSBA) -This course is for students who desire to work as business analysts and have a strong background in statistics, forecasting, and forecasting models. Students will learn how to apply analytics tools and methodologies to solve problems that businesses face today and in the future.

These are the two most popular and successful specializations offered at Stanford University.

If the budget factor does not impose restrictions on you while considering your options then Stanford University can be a magnificent choice for you.

It provides an education that will set you on par with the modern data science industry and help you grab the job of your dreams.

Georgia Institute of Technology

The Georgia Institute of Technology (commonly referred to as Georgia Tech) is a prestigious technological university in Atlanta, Georgia. The institute was founded in 1885 and is well-known for its engineering, computing, business administration, data science, and design degree programs.

Georgia Tech is ranked 8th in the United States among all national universities.

Georgia Tech's Master of Data Science degree is an interdisciplinary program that focuses on data analysis using statistical, mathematical, and computational tools.

Students with a strong interest in masters In data science in USA but no prior experience with statistics are invited to apply.

Individuals with undergraduate degrees in the physical sciences, social sciences, mathematics, or engineering can use the degree to increase their grasp of data science and their ability to apply data science methodologies to real-world situations.

Georgia Tech also offers quite a few specializations, I'll list below some of the most successful and desired ones in the data science field:

  1. Data Engineering: This specialization focuses on how to build systems for collecting, storing, processing, and analyzing large amounts of data. Students learn about big data analytics tools such as MapReduce, Hadoop, and Spark as well as structured query language (SQL) and NoSQL databases such as MongoDB or Cassandra.

    They also build web applications using frameworks like Spring Boot or AngularJS. Georgia Tech has some of the best mentors in the field of data engineering also the curriculum provided is an exceptional and brilliant one.

  2. Data Science & Business Analytics: Students can combine their technical expertise with business abilities obtained via marketing, management, or finance coursework in this specialization.

    Students will also look into data science ethics, including privacy problems with large data and algorithm transparency difficulties with businesses like Facebook and Google Fiber.

These are the hottest specialization courses available at the Georgia tech which has produced many millionaires & billionaires in the past. But that's not all, the university offers many other specializations that you can explore.

Northwestern University

Northwestern University is a private research university in Evanston, Illinois, United States, with campuses in Chicago and Doha, Qatar, and academic programs conducted on six continents.

The university was founded by Methodist leaders. Its current president and then-governor of Illinois, Edward Everett Hall, was a founding donor and the first chairman of its board of trustees.

Northwestern's masters In data science in USA is a one-year, full-time, cohort-based program designed to train students to be data science professionals who can apply their skills in industry or pursue a Ph.D. Faculty from the Kellogg School of Management and the McCormick School of Engineering teach the curriculum.

Graduates of this interdisciplinary program are prepared to engage with and lead teams on data science initiatives in a variety of settings, including industry, government, and nonprofit organizations.

The curriculum consists of three core courses that are complemented by electives chosen from a diverse set of options.

The core courses provide a rigorous introduction to the field of masters In data science in USA, covering topics such as machine learning, databases, and information retrieval systems.

Elective courses allow students to gain a deeper understanding of specific areas of interest within data science such as predictive analytics or social network analysis. To name a few specializations, Northwestern University offers specialization in Data Visualization, Analytics Research Methods, and Big Data Analytics.

Columbia University

As a leading research university, Columbia is dedicated to advancing the frontiers of knowledge in a comprehensive range of disciplines. At its core, Columbia is a community of scholars who take great pride in their work.

The quality of education at Columbia University is reflected in its high standing among peer institutions. Its undergraduate schools are consistently ranked among the best in the nation; its graduate schools continue to attract students from around the world and its medical school continues to receive top rankings from U.S. News & World Report magazine.

Columbia University's Master of Science in Data Science (MSDS) program gives students a solid foundation in data science and exposes them to the strategies and technologies utilized by leading firms across sectors.

This intense 12-month program provides students with an unrivaled chance to learn about data science ideas, methodology, and application.

The MSDS program is taught by academics who are leaders in their fields and have pioneered research and innovation that has transformed business practices around the world.

Students learn from leading faculty members at Columbia University's School of Professional Studies (SPS), one of the finest business schools in the world and one of only five schools outside the Ivy League to have been ranked No. 1 globally by Bloomberg Businessweek for three consecutive years (2014-2016).

Their faculty members are known for their academic excellence, research achievements, consulting experience, and industry connections.

Yale University

Yale University is a private Ivy League research university in New Haven, Connecticut. Founded in 1701 in the Colony of Connecticut, the university is the third-oldest institution of higher education in the United States.

It is noted for its rigorous academics, rich tradition of leadership, and unrivaled location in New Haven, Connecticut.

The MSDS program is designed to prepare students with a deep understanding of the theoretical foundations of data science while simultaneously developing the practical skills required to work effectively with large data sets in industry or academia.

The curriculum covers core topics such as databases and data mining algorithms as well as specialized courses on topics such as social network analysis, machine learning, computational neuroscience, and text mining.

Students are expected to complete two projects that involve working with real-world datasets that are provided by industry partners from sectors including publishing, finance, health care, retailing, telecommunications, and more.

In addition to core courses, students have the opportunity to choose from two specializations:

  1. Big Data Analytics: The Big Data Analytics specialization focuses on big data technologies (e.g., Spark/Hadoop/SparkSQL) and techniques (e.g., machine learning).
  2. The Business Analytics specialization focuses on business analytics principles (e.g., forecasting), applications of statistical methods (e.g., regression), and data visualization techniques (e.g., Tableau).

Harvard University

Harvard University is a Cambridge, Massachusetts-based private Ivy League research university. The institution was founded in 1636 and is named for its first sponsor, notable Puritan preacher John Harvard.

Harvard University is the oldest university in the United States and one of the most prominent institutions in the world.

The Institute for Applied Computational Science (IACS) administers the Data Science master's program, which is jointly directed by the Computer Science and Statistics faculties and prepares students in the rapidly increasing subject of data science.

Students must complete 12 courses to achieve a Master of Science in Data Science.

This requires students to spend at least three semesters on campus (one and a half academic years). Some students will elect to continue their education for a fourth semester to take extra courses or complete a master's thesis research project.

Students at Harvard University's master's in data science program can choose from two major specializations:

  1. Machine learning specialization: Statistical models and algorithms for prediction and analysis are the focus of this subject.

    Students will learn how to write programs that interact with large volumes of data and use machine learning approaches to anticipate the outcomes of those datasets.

  2. Business analytics specialization: This program focuses on using data science approaches to solve business challenges. Students will learn how to extract insights from massive datasets, build prediction models and algorithms, assess these models using business metrics like return on investment (ROI), and successfully communicate their results to stakeholders in a range of situations.

These were the list of some of the best universities for doing a master's in data science in the USA. They both offer promising curricula and teaching faculty. And each has its pros and cons.

Admission Criteria & Best Time to Apply

Required Qualification & Documents

The following table provides information about eligibility and documents required to get admission to the top-ranking universities in the United States.



Documents Required

Stanford UniversityLinear algebra, statistics, programming in bachelorGRE; LOR; Personal Statement
Harvard UniversityMaths, CS, statistics, or scientific computing in bachelorGRE; 3 LOR; Statement of Purpose
Yale UniversityBachelors in related fieldGRE; 3 Letter of Recommendation; Work experience; Personal Statement
University of Pennsylvania (UPenn)Mathematical & statistical proficiency; Programming experienceBiographical Information; Resume; Personal Statement; 2 LOR
Georgia Institute of TechnologyMaths, Java or C++, a data structure in bachelorCV
The University of California, Berkeley (UC Berkeley)3.0 GPA (80%) in bachelor; Experience in programmingGRE
Columbia UniversityCalculus, linear algebra, and programming in bachelorGRE; 3 LOR; Personal Statement; CV
Northwestern University2 semesters of calculus, 1 semester of linear or matrix algebra, 1 introduction to computing course in bachelor1 academic LOR, 1 professional LOR; SOP; Personal Statement; CV
New York UniversityCalculus, CS in bachelorGRE; 3 LOR; SOP
The University of California, San Diego (UC San Diego)Bachelors in engineering, maths, physics, and other science-related fieldsGRE; 2 LOR; SOP; CV; 2 years of work experience

International students are also required to maintain a minimum language proficiency score to be eligible to apply to top universities in the USA.

Below listed are the ELP requirements from the top Colleges for masters In data science in USA:

S. No.




1.Stanford UniversityNot accepted100
2.Harvard University7.0100
3.Yale University7.0 100
4.The University of Pennsylvania7.5100
5.Georgia Institute of Technology7.095
6.UC Berkeley7.090
7.Columbia University7.0100
8.Northwestern University6.590
9.New York University7.090
10.UC San Diego6.580

The best time to apply for admission to universities in the USA is in January. The forms for admission are out at this time, and you should apply as early as you can. The deadline for submission is in March.

Cost While Studying Masters In Data Science in USA

Pre-arrival expenses

The cost of expenditure done by you before the beginning of your course is called Pre-arrival expenses.

The table below is a detailed representation of what your pre-arrival expenses will look like when you opt for an masters In data science in USA.

Type of Expense

Cost in INR

Program Application Fees7,456- 14,913
US Student Visa Application Fees11,931
IELTS Fees17,870
TOEFL Fees14,900
GRE Fees15,918

Tuition Fees

This is one of the biggest expenses when you are looking to do a Master's in Data Science in the USA. The fees for American colleges are certainly very high. Below is the list of top universities and their fees in INR.


Tuition Fee (INR/Year)

Stanford University40.2 lakhs
Harvard University43.18 lakhs
Yale University33 lakhs
University of Pennsylvania20.79 lakhs
Georgia Institute of Technology43.44 lakhs
UC Berkeley19.38 lakhs
Columbia University50.55 lakhs
Northwestern University44.58 lakhs
New York University26.55 lakhs
UC San Diego19.68 lakhs

Cost of Living

As you might know that Standard of Living is very high in the USA. Due to this the cost of living in the USA is also very high. That is why the USA has considered one of the most expensive countries for students.

The major expenses that you'll need to take care of while living in the USA are listed in the table below, have a look at them to get a good idea about the same.


Cost Per Month (in INR)

Rent of Apartment74,400- 1.48 lakhs
Meals8,930- 11,908
Transportation7,442- 22,324
Personal Expenses22,324- 29,766
Health Insurance33,486- 52,090

Job Opportunities and Salary Packages for Masters In Data Science in USA

After completing your masters In data science in USA you can expect a starting salary package ranging anywhere from $130,000 - $200,000.

Down below is the list of average salary packages that graduate students of top universities in the USA get in a different city of USA.


Average Salary

New York192,000 USD
San Francisco174,000 USD
San Diego182,000 USD
Chicago176,000 USD
Cincinnati132,000 USD
Houston186,000 USD
Atlanta151,000 USD
Los Angeles191,000 USD

Surrounding Environment

So, now after getting all the know-how about how the procedure of getting admission to a university in the USA, you might have started wondering about your dream life and also thinking that what would life be like for an immigrant student in the United States.

So, other than being expensive, the laws in the USA are also quite strict, especially for a foreigner. So, moving to the USA from India might be quite a big change for you in that sense.

The culture would be different, but that will be the case for any country if you try to move abroad. But abroad are a lot of Indian immigrants who are residing in the USA, so you might make a few friends from your home country.

Apart from that USA is a very well-developed country and you won't have any problems with the commute, communication and in locating any amneties in your nearby locality.


We've gone over the nitty-gritty details of what you need to have or do to study masters In data science in USA!
It's not an easy path, but if you're willing to put in the work, it can be an extremely rewarding one.
Good luck! We hope you get your dream college. For any queries be sure to hit the comment section.

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