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ONLINE MASTER OF DATA SCIENCE

Admission Requirements

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MDS@RICE

Online Master of Data Science Admission Requirements

The online Master of Data Science program is ideal for working professionals who want to launch or enhance their careers in data science. With flexible class schedules and a rigorous curriculum, students gain valuable skills and experience in a fully-online environment. The MDS@Rice program is now accepting applications, apply online today.

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APPLYING TO THE PROGRAM

Earning Your Degree Online Starts Here

Join other working professionals to build your data science skills to advance your career and increase your earning potential.

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GRE NOT REQUIRED

The GRE is not required for admission to the online Master of Science in Data Science program. Instead, your work experience will be evaluated.

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THREE START DATES PER YEAR

The online MDS program offers three start dates a year: fall, spring and summer. Choose the start date that works best for your schedule.

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APPLY ONLINE

Online application to the program is fast and easy. We receive a large volume of applications. Plan to submit your application as early as possible to avoid delays in processing.

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Applications Open for the Fall 2021 Cohort

We are now accepting applications for Fall 2021 enrollment for the online Master of Data Science program. All required application materials must be submitted online by July 1st, 2021.

Applications for the online and in-person MDS programs at Rice University are exclusive, so if you apply to the online program, you cannot be admitted to the in-person program. Please ensure you have the required application materials before you apply.

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Prerequisites for the Online Master of Data Science Program

  • Bachelor’s Degree: All candidates must have a Bachelor's degree, but it is not a strict requirement that it be in a computational field.

  • Mathematical Sophistication: You will be taught the relevant statistics and mathematics necessary to succeed in data science. However, this material can be complex, especially if you do not have an appropriate mathematical background, specifically high-school level algebra and trigonometry, college-level calculus, basic discrete math skills, and boolean logic. If you need a refresh in mathematics or programming, learn more about our online bridge courses being offered this summer.

  • Programming Foundations: You will be taught how to program so that you can succeed in data science. However, this will be a much smoother experience if you already have some level of comfort in basic programming.


Required Application Materials for MDS@Rice

Three Letters of Recommendation

Recommendation letters should be requested from at least three individuals. These letters should be from professors, research advisors, direct supervisors or others familiar with your relevant educational or professional experiences and your interest in data science. Please do not submit letters from friends or colleagues. You may submit more than three letters, but at least three are required with your application. Visit the Office of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies Admissions page for additional information.

Official Transcripts

Both official and unofficial transcripts may be submitted with your application. Upon acceptance into the program, you will be asked to send official transcripts. In addition, please submit a current CV or resume with your application.

GRE Suggested, But Not Required

For 2021, Rice is eliminating the Graduate Records Examination (GRE) standardized test requirement for its graduate programs, and the GRE is not required for admission to the online Master of Science in Data Science program, though it is recommended. This is in recognition of the fact that the GRE may be a significant obstacle for working professionals applying to graduate programs. If you are able to take the GRE, please submit your scores with your application. If GRE results are absent from an application, work experience will be evaluated instead.

Statement of Purpose (SOP)

A Statement of Purpose is required for all applicants to the online Master of Science in Data Science program. This statement should clearly and succinctly summarize your past academic and professional experience and achievements, discuss your motivation for seeking the MDS degree, and explain your interest in data science and goals for applying the discipline to real-world challenges and for advancing your career. You should also briefly discuss any other factors you would like the Admission Committee to consider while reviewing your application (e.g. personal background, work experience, leadership roles, etc.).

TOEFL/IELTS Scores

TOEFL/IELTS scores are required for any student whose native language is not English. The code to send the electronic scores is: 6609. For the TOEFL score, the minimum is 90 on the iBT and 600 on the paper-based TOEFL. For the IELTS score, the minimum is 7. Students with a degree from a university where English is the official language are exempt from submitting TOEFL/IELTS scores.


MDS@Rice Costs

Students in the online Master of Science in 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. An application fee of $85 is also required.

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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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