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MDS@RICE

Master of Data Science
Online Program

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CREATE NEW OPPORTUNITIES

Diversify Your Career in Data Science

Data scientists are not just statisticians, computer scientists or mathematicians, but individuals well-versed in all of these fields and their application to the study of data. Here's what working professionals will appreciate about the online Master of Data Science program:

  • Same online and in-person degrees
  • Multidisciplinary interdepartmental and intercollegiate instruction
  • Customizable, specialized degrees with expected completion for part-time students in 20 months
  • Access to the Data to Knowledge Lab and real-world data challenges
  • Best-in-class online teaching platform

As an institution of the highest grade, we’re committed to providing a superior data science education to our students through innovative research collaborations and by the means of our trusted faculty and staff.

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ALSO OFFERED ON-CAMPUS

Visit the on-campus MDS website to learn more about the full-time, in-person program at Rice University's beautiful, 300-acre tree-lined campus in Houston, Texas.

Applications Open

Applications Open for Fall 2021

Applications for the online master’s degree in data science are being accepted for Fall 2021 enrollment. All required application materials must be submitted online by July 1, 2021. To learn more about applying to our MS data science online program, please visit our admissions page.

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BROADEN FOUNDATIONS

An Interdisciplinary Curriculum Designed to Solve Business Problems

Rice's online MS of Data Science program is designed to support the needs of working professionals who want to apply data science knowledge, theory and techniques to solve difficult, real-world problems, beginning with raw and dirty data and ending with actionable insights. Discover the difference between Rice University’s online data science masters and other comparable programs.

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Program participants will develop a graduate-level understanding of the computational and statistical foundations of data science. Through in-depth study, MDS students obtain mastery of either one of the core methods of data science or one application area of data science. As a leading research institution, students pursuing the online MS of Data Science at Rice will gain immersive, experiential learning through the Capstone Project.

Upon completion of the online Master of Data Science program, alumni will be able to apply data science techniques to solve difficult, real-world problems and advance their career in Data Science, all while conquering the rigor of one of the best colleges in the nation.

You can complete the flexible online data science master’s program as a full-time student in one year or as a part-time student in 2 - 3.5 years, with degrees customizable to specialty areas of focus.

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Best-in-Class Online Learning

Best-in-Class Online Learning

Consider the benefits of achieving your Master of Data Science degree online from Rice: a best-in-class flexible and engaging learning format. In our online Master of Data Science programs, your classes are led by distinguished Computer Science Department faculty and enhanced by interdepartmental and intercollegiate experts. Learn from professionals in small class groups and via 1:1 faculty interactions. You will gain real-world skills that support your career goals.

Online Master of Data Science Information Sessions

Session 1 - August 3, 2021

Tuesday, August 3, 2021
6:30 PM until 7:30 PM

Learn what career-advancing knowledge and skills you can expect to build within the MDS@RICE online program and what specialized tracks are available

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Session 2 - August 18, 2021

Tuesday, August 18, 2021
12:00 PM until 1:00 PM

Learn what career-advancing knowledge and skills you can expect to build within the MDS@RICE online program and what specialized tracks are available

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Session 3 - October 13, 2021

Wednesday, October 13, 2021
12:00 PM until 1:00 PM

Learn what career-advancing knowledge and skills you can expect to build within the MDS@RICE online program and what specialized tracks are available

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Session 4 - October 26, 2021

Tuesday, October 26, 2021
6:30 PM until 7:30 PM

Learn what career-advancing knowledge and skills you can expect to build within the MDS@RICE online program and what specialized tracks are available

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Important Dates

We offer three intakes per year, so choose the best time to start for you:

SESSION APPLICATION DUE CLASSES START
FALL 2021 July 1, 2021 August 23, 2021
SPRING 2022 November 1, 2021 January 10, 2022
SUMMER 2022 March 1, 2022 May 10, 2022

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RICE MDS ONLINE

Industry-Leading Faculty

Rice’s multidisciplinary data science faculty are experts in a variety of areas, including computer science, statistics, electrical and computer engineering, and business. In addition to core coursework in programming, statistics, data visualization, machine learning and big data, our faculty will also provide instruction in other key areas, including:

  • Ethics in data science
  • Deep learning and network science
  • Image processing and medical imaging
  • Cybersecurity
  • Data-driven marketing, finance and operations management

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MDS@RICE FAQs

What does the online Master of Data Science program cost?

Students in the Online MS of Data Science program will pay the standard Rice University part-time rate of $1666.70 per credit hour. The program requires a minimum of 31 credit hours to satisfy degree requirements.

Is financial aid available?

Because the Master of Data Science (MDS) is a non-thesis (non-research) degree, Rice University does not offer tuition waivers, stipends, fellowships, or assistantships for this program. Corporate and employer scholarships are sometimes available, and all accepted students are eligible to apply. Students are also encouraged to visit the Rice Office of Student Financial Services for more information about loans and outside sources of aid.

What is the difference between data science and data analytics?

While the terms are often used interchangeably, there are key differences between data science and data analytics. Data analysts focus on analyzing vast amounts of data to discern patterns that can be used in effective business decision-making. Data scientists know how to develop and apply analytical tools and build automation systems and frameworks to structure data, mine it, explain it and offer insight into how the data informs business decisions.

Should I apply if I don’t have a STEM undergrad/graduate background?

Master of Data Science applicants do not have to have a computational background as the goal of the degree is to quickly cover foundational topics in computation, mathematics, and statistics. The program is interdisciplinary by design so that it has direct application for students across industries.

How long does it take to complete the online MS of Data Science program?

The Online Master of Data Science program can be completed in as few as 12 months but is intended to be taken on a part-time basis. The majority of our students take 2-3.5 years.

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