Eligibility Requirements for University of Southern California MSc Data Science

The following materials are required to be included with your online application for University of Southern California Data Science MS:

  • Transcripts
  • Resume/CV
  • Personal Statement
  • Letter of Recommendation (2 highly recommended)

NOTE: The GRE is not required for 2025 applications.

Program Eligibility URL:https://viterbigradadmission.usc.edu/programs/masters/msprograms/data-science/ms-applied-data-science/

About University of Southern California

The University of Southern California (USC) stands as a respected institution globally, lauded for its unwavering commitment to academic superiority, new-age innovation, and societal contributions. Housed in the dynamic city of Los Angeles, USC creates a fluid and diverse academic milieu that nurtures intellectual inquisitiveness, sparks creativity, and encourages cooperation among its students, faculty, and staff. 

Boasting a rich heritage that spans over a hundred years, USC has metamorphosed into a global epicentre for research, gaining acknowledgment for its exceptional programs that cut across a wide array of disciplines, from business and engineering to arts and humanities. True to its mission of churning out future trailblazers and catalysts of change, USC offers an all-inclusive educational experience that is enhanced by its high-calibre faculty, ultramodern facilities, and an expansive network of distinguished alumni.

But USC's mission extends beyond the academic realm. The university is a hotbed for a vibrant campus culture, championing inclusivity, fostering cultural consciousness, and facilitating rich engagement within the community. Whether it be pioneering research pursuits, innovative educational endeavors, or significant community outreach initiatives, USC stands unwavering in fulfilling its lasting legacy of moulding minds, sparking innovation, and generating positive ripples across the globe.

University of Southern California MSc Data Science Program Description

The University of Southern California Data Science MS will train students as data scientists. This degree provides students with the knowledge and skill to solve real-world world challenges that require a combination of data management and data analytics skills. Students will learn how to use the latest big-data infrastructures, such as Hadoop and Spark.

They will learn how to use the various analytical tools, including machine learning, data mining and data visualization. And students will learn how to apply these tools to real-world problems.  This degree is designed for students with a range of backgrounds, but students are expected to have at least a strong math and science background to pursue this degree.

Students that do not have much training in computer science will first learn the basics of data science, including data formats, tools and techniques. They learn how to build data processing programs in Python, and they will learn how to apply the latest analytical tools through hands-on homework and projects.

Students with a computer science background will be able to jump directly into the more advanced data science courses including data management, machine learning, data mining and statistics for data science. Once students have completed the introductory and core courses, they are given a choice of electives to allow them to pursue their own interests within data science.

  • This program requires completion of 32 units of coursework
  • Eligible for the OPT STEM extension

Program URL:https://viterbigradadmission.usc.edu/programs/masters/msprograms/data-science/ms-applied-data-science/

University of Southern California MSc Data Science Program Curriculum

Program Curriculum URL:https://viterbigradadmission.usc.edu/programs/masters/msprograms/data-science/ms-applied-data-science/

  • Applied natural language processing
  • Advanced data stores
  • analysis of algorithms
  • information retrieval and web search engines 


  • Applied natural language processing
  • Advanced data stores
  • analysis of algorithms
  • information retrieval and web search engines 
  • Foundations of data management
  • machine learning for data science
  • foundations and applications of data mining

Applied Data Science

  • CS Student Organizations
  • Association of Data Scientists
  • USC Association of Computing Machinery (ACM)
  • USC Cyber Security and Digital Forensics Organization (CybOrg)
  • Data Science Association
  • Recognized Student Organizations

University of Southern California MSc Data Science Acceptance Rate

The University of Southern California (USC), a distinguished private research establishment, is located in the heart of Los Angeles, California. Founded in 1880, it bears the honor of being the oldest private research institution within California. The University's acceptance rate stands at a selective 12.5%, illustrating the elite and exclusive nature of this learning institution.

University of Southern California MSc Data Science Fee Structure

The fees structure for University of Southern California Data Science MS program:

Fee Description Fee Amount
Tuition (Fall 2023 - Summer 2024)  
- Per Unit Rate $2,424
- 3-unit Course $7,272
- 4-unit Course $9,696
Mandatory Fees (2023/24)  
- Student Health Center Fee $600/semester
- Norman Topping Student Aid Fee $11/semester
- ENGR Student Programming Fee (On-Campus students) $40/semester
- ENGR Student Programming Fee (DEN@Viterbi students) $20/semester
- Exam Proctoring $40 - $100/course
- Transportation Fee $93/semester
- Health Insurance (Fall 2023) $948
- Health Insurance (Spring 2024) $1,765

University of Southern California MSc Data Science Deadlines

University of Southern California MSc Data Science Admission Process


Want to Score 8+ Band in IELTS?

Kickstart your IELTS Prep for FREE and get access to LIVE classes, study material, assignments, mocks, and much more!

University of Southern California MSc Data Science Employment

The University of Southern California Data Science MS program boasts a sterling reputation for fostering superb employment prospects. Graduates from this program frequently find opportunities at premier companies spanning a range of industries. Our MS in Data Science program ensures that students acquire the indispensable skills and academic knowledge to excel in various data-related roles, promising careers as data engineers, data analysts, software engineers, and even machine learning engineers. 

Our program's curriculum is devised to capably meet the prerequisites of the swiftly advancing data-centric market. This ensures that our graduates have the readiness not just to cope, but to thrive in real-world challenges. We channel considerable emphasis on hands-on experience and industrial connections allowing our graduates to reap the tremendous benefits of a wealth of internship opportunities. In addition, they enjoy access to an expansive network of alumni and industry collaborators. 

Whether it's navigating the terrain at technological behemoths such as Amazon, Google, and Meta Platforms, Inc., or steering successes at premier financial establishments like Goldman Sachs and Capital One, graduates from USC's MS in Data Science are adequately equipped. They stand prepared to make significant strides and contributions in the increasingly data-driven landscape of the contemporary world.


Average Starting Salary

University of Southern California MSc Data Science Employment Statistics


Top Employers:

  • Amazon  
  • Experian  
  • Google  
  • Meta Platforms, Inc.  
  • Qualcomm  

Companies Recruiting University of Southern California MSc Data Science Graduates

Graduates of University of Southern California Data Science MS program are highly sought after by leading companies like:

  • Amazon
  • Google
  • Meta Platforms
  • Inc.
  • Qualcomm
  • Experian

Employment Overview URL: https://viterbigradadmission.usc.edu/programs/masters/msprograms/data-science/ms-applied-data-science/

University of Southern California MSc Data Science Alumni Info

  • Aeyesafe - Data Engineer  
  • Alibaba - Data Engineer  
  • Amazon - Business Intelligence Engineer, Data Scientist, Software Development Engineer  
  • Amazon Web Services - Software Engineer  
  • American Express Company - Data Scientist  
  • Antra Inc. - Java Developer  
  • Antra Inc. - Software Development Engineer  
  • Apple - Software Engineer  
  • Bain & Company - Senior Associate Data Science

Application Essay for University of Southern California MSc Data Science

Prompt 1: Describe how you plan to pursue your academic interests and why you want to explore them at USC specifically. Please feel free to address your first- and second-choice major selections (250 words).

Prompt 2 (optional): Starting with the beginning of high school/secondary school, if you have had a gap where you were not enrolled in school during a fall or spring term, please address this gap in your educational history. You do not need to address a summer break (250 words).


Statement of Purpose for University of Southern California MSc Data Science

Follow the given 5 steps to come up with a stellar SOP and secure admission for University of Southern California Data Science MS:

Step 1: Write a compact introduction paragraph
Your data science SOP introduction carries information about yourself and then about your career objective. Create an impression in the opening line of your SOP which makes the admission officer go further. 

Step 2: Provide your academic accomplishments in detail
The first paragraph should carry the details of your academic qualification, achievements, volunteerships, presentations that involve subjects like data analytics, data structure, etc, and seminar and event organization.

Step 3: Mention your professional background shortly
This specific paragraph of your SOP should contain information about your organization, job role, projects you’ve handled, the solution you’ve suggested, and what made you take the decision of pursuing the course, university, and country.

Step 4: Specify your goals clearly
In this paragraph, you need to talk about the plans you have after you complete the course and the skills and how the degree will help you to achieve your goals.

Step 5: Write a killer conclusion
Summarise the data science SOP with the point of why you’re capable of joining their university and how important it is to pursue the course.

Interview Questions for University of Southern California MSc Data Science

Beginning with applicants for the Fall 2019 semester, the University will no longer conduct or consider admission interviews as part of its application process.

We encourage you to develop a strong application by focusing on the areas of your application discussed on our How To Apply page.  We also encourage you to visit campus through our Meet USC programs to learn more about the University and the Viterbi School of Engineering through an admission presentation, campus tour, and department information session with a representative from the Viterbi Office of Undergraduate Admission.

University of Southern California MSc Data Science Scholarships available for International Students

Yes, the USC Viterbi School of Engineering offers several merit-based funding opportunities specifically for international students pursuing Master's degrees. Here are some of the scholarships available:

  • Dean's Scholarships: Award amounts range from $5000 to $20,000, and they are open to all international and U.S. students pursuing a Master’s degree full-time from the Viterbi School of Engineering on the USC campus.
  • Emerging Leaders Scholarship: This scholarship is designed to support outstanding international students who demonstrate leadership potential and academic excellence.
  • GEM Fellowships: The Graduate Engineering Merit (GEM) Fellowship Program offers opportunities for underrepresented minorities to pursue graduate education in engineering.
  • Chevron-USC Partnership Fellowships: These fellowships are available to international students pursuing graduate studies in engineering disciplines relevant to the energy industry.
  • USC-META Center for Research and Education in AI and Learning Fellowship: This fellowship supports students interested in artificial intelligence and machine learning research.
  • Health Systems Management Scholarship: For students interested in health systems management, this scholarship provides financial support for their studies.
  • Information Sciences Institute Summer Internship Program: This program offers internships in various research areas related to information sciences.
  • Global Engineers Scholarship: This scholarship is available to international students who demonstrate exceptional academic achievement and leadership potential.
  • USC Viterbi Active Duty Military Scholarship: This scholarship supports active-duty military personnel pursuing graduate studies at USC Viterbi.

What makes University of Southern California MSc Data Science unique?

USC is an innovative private research university that blends the autonomy for exploration emblematic of a private institution with its size and resources, along with the breadth and scale of a public university.

  • A Leading Private Research University: In the 2024 Wall Street Journal/College Pulse Rankings, the University of Southern California is ranked 22nd among over 400 public and private U.S. universities. USC is also ranked in the top five among all California public and private institutions. The rankings consider student experience, salary impact and social mobility.
  • Financial Aid Awarded: USC is committed to honoring the academic potential of all students, regardless of background or financial means. Over $773.4 million was awarded in the fiscal year 2021-2022 (all sources).
  • Community Partnerships: The University of Southern California has been a proud and active member of its community since 1880. USC believes its strength as a great university depends on its ability to be a good neighbor.
  • Sponsored Research: The University of Southern California attracted $955.6 million in sponsored research (2020-21 fiscal year) to fund studies in biotech, public health, biomedical engineering, cancer, and Alzheimer’s disease, among others.

University of Southern California MSc Data Science Contact Information

Whom should I contact in case of any doubts?

Email ID: datasci@usc.edu

Phone: 213.740.4488

Useful Links

Photos & Videos of University of Southern California MSc Data Science

university of southern california data science ms
university of southern california data science ms

Conclusion: Should you apply to University of Southern California MSc Data Science?

If you envisage progressing your professional career within the realm of data science, submitting your application for the Master of Science in Data Science program at the esteemed University of Southern California (USC) might be a tactical decision. Uniquely, University of Southern California Data Science MS distinguishes itself through its interdisciplinary pedagogy, affording students an encompassing grasp of principles and practical application of data science spanning multiple fields.

Ask a Question

Have Queries about University of Southern California?

Get Answers from Alums

I am belongs to mechanical stream , but i want to do masters in data science. If i apply mechanical course to the University's later can i change to data science after going their.?

It is possible to change your program of study from Mechanical Engineering to Data Science after you have enrolled in a university, but this will depend on the policies of the specific university and program.

In some cases, universities may allow students to switch between programs within the same department or school, as long as they meet the prerequisites and requirements for the new program. However, switching to a completely different department or school may be more difficult and require additional coursework or qualifications.

Before you apply to a university, I recommend that you research the specific programs and departments that interest you and check their policies regarding changing programs of study. You may also want to reach out to admissions officers or academic advisors at the universities you are considering to ask about their policies and any potential restrictions.

Additionally, keep in mind that Data Science is a highly specialized field, and some programs may have specific prerequisites or requirements that you may need to fulfill before being accepted. This may include coursework in computer science, statistics, or other related fields. Therefore, you may want to consider taking some relevant courses or gaining experience in Data Science before applying to these programs.

It is also important to note that switching programs can have an impact on your graduation timeline and academic progress. Depending on the programs and the credits you have already completed, switching to a new program may result in additional coursework, delayed graduation, or additional costs. Therefore, it is important to carefully consider your academic goals and interests before selecting a program of study and to plan accordingly if you decide to switch programs.

I want to know university/colleges which has MS in information systems or MS in management information systems (MIS)?

Management Information Systems or MIS is the software designed to instruct you on capabilities associated with IT and business. With MS in MIS, college students get the foundational commercial organization expertise with guides focusing on Information Systems. MIS application teaches students the software of computer-related science to managerial programs. After finishing the graduate program, students are organized to take on jobs where they have to provide picks to the issues the company/organization is going through.

This program is offered via the capability of industrial enterprise schools and schools of Information Studies. The MIS program is a nice mixture of science and management that equips college students with the practical ability to significantly change organizations with the aid of technology. Many college students mistake it for MBA, however, MBA and MIS are different programs.

Popular faculties offering MS in MIS: 

  1. Bellevue University (NE)
  2. Carnegie Mellon University
  3. University of Maryland (UMBC)
  4. University of Maryland - College Park
  5. New York University (Stern)
  6. University of California, Berkeley
  7. Syracuse University
  8. Oklahoma State University (Spears School of Business)
  9. University at Buffalo – SUNY (School of Management).

Eligibility standards to pursue MS in MIS:- 

  • Usually, commercial company faculties require the candidates to have a bachelor's degree in IT or business.
  • Apart from this, colleges additionally are given candidates a bachelor's in Corporate Finance, Organizational Development, or Human Resources.
How to get scholarship for a student going to do MS in USA. What all scholarships are available for doing masters in USA.?

Primary Scholarships: Firstly, most U.S. universities offer merit-based scholarships. 

These are awarded based on a student's academic achievements, leadership qualities, and other personal attributes. Prospective students should review the specific scholarship pages of their chosen institutions for eligibility criteria and application guidelines.

External Scholarships: 

In addition to university scholarships, various external organizations and foundations such as the Fulbright Commission, Chevening Scholarships, or the Commonwealth Scholarships offer funding for international students. 

These programs often target students from specific countries, disciplines, or those demonstrating particular academic or professional excellence.

Industry-Specific Scholarships: 

Students should also explore options within their chosen field. For example, the IEEE Computer Society offers scholarships for technology and engineering students, which can cover a significant part of tuition fees.

Actionable Advice: Begin your search early and tailor your applications to each scholarship’s requirements. Pay close attention to the deadlines and required documents, as these can vary significantly. Moreover, crafting compelling personal statements and securing strong letters of recommendation are crucial components of a successful scholarship application.

Broader Considerations: Be aware of the implications of scholarship funding on your visa status. Some scholarships may require you to return to your home country after your studies, which could affect your post-graduate plans.

In summary, securing a scholarship for an MS in the USA involves diligent research, meticulous application processes, and an understanding of the broader professional and regulatory landscape. Being proactive and well-informed can significantly enhance your chances of receiving financial support.


View All Questions