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I am a current student in Eastern University’s MS in Data Science program. The program started in August, and is now starting its 6th term. I’m only entering my third term though.
This program provides comprehensive education in all aspects of data science, data visualization and machine learning. I’m really enjoying it! There’s not a lot written about it though, and I’m hoping this will clear some misconceptions up.
Applying to Eastern’s MS in Data Science
First things first: Eastern is a Christian school but you do not need to be Christian to attend. The application, which is free, does ask for your religious affiliation (I chose Agnostic, sorry I didn’t look for Atheist), but it has no bearing on your application.
You’ll need to provide unofficial transcripts at first and then have official transcripts sent. Domestic grads can get admitted and start conditionally with unofficial transcripts, while international students will need their transcripts evaluated by a NACES member like WES.
Since I attended Athabasca University, which is US regionally accredited accredited despite being a Canadian school, I did not need to have my undergrad evaluated (though I did provide an evaluation anyway since I had one.)
You also need to submit a resume. They’ll accept a GPA of 2.5 but prefer a 3.0.
MS in Data Science Curriculum
After getting admitted, I was able to start the first course. There are 10 courses in the program, 3 credits each. At this point I’ve completed DTSC-520 and DTSC-550 and am starting DTSC-650 on Monday. The courses are taken in somewhat of a different order.
- DTSC 520 Fundamentals of Data Science
- DTSC 550 Introduction to Statistical Modeling
- DTSC 575 Principles of Python Programming
- DTSC 650 Data Analytics in R
- DTSC 660 Data and Database Management with SQL
- DTSC 670 Foundations of Machine Learning Models
- DTSC 600 Information Visualization
- DTSC 680 Applied Machine Learning
- DTSC 690 Data Science Capstone: Ethical and Philosophical Issues in Data Science
- DTSC 691 Data Science Capstone: Applied Data Science
DTSC-520 is an introduction to Python and Data Science. DTSC-550 is a statistics course with very basic R. DTSC-575 is an indepth Python programming course. DTSC-650 is an indepth R programming course.
DTSC-660 is a database course using PostgreSQL, while 670 and 680 are deep dives into machine learning, neural networks, and artificial intelligence. DTSC-600 is a data visualization course focusing on Qlik and Tableau.
Finally, DTSC-690 and DTSC-691 are the capstone courses where you build a complete data science project from start to finish to build your portfolio.
It’s a packed program! Each course includes video lessons that are small (2 minutes, 5 minutes, 10 minutes) and you’ll use that to learn the basic material. There are non-credit quizzes throughout, and then exams.
Each course is 7 weeks long, so they are a tight 7 weeks. This is not a cohort program so you can take 1, 2, or 0 courses in each term. You have 5 years to complete the program
The first two courses are 100% exam-based. DTSC-520 includes 4 exams and DTSC-550 includes 5 exams. You can repeat the exams as many times as you need and the highest grade is kept.
You must earn a minimum of 80% in each course to proceed, but again you can repeat the exercises as much as you need.
In the later courses you’ll also have CodeGrade assignments where you submit your code to CodeGrade and it will evaluate it for you. Again, you can resubmit as much as you need.
Learning Management System and Student Support
The degree uses Brightspace as the Learning Management System (LMS), and there are discussion boards throughout the program that help students learn from each other and a Discord server that is student-run is available for instant chats.
Additionally, there is a Graduate Assistant assigned to each course that will answer discussion board posts and provide additional support.
This is perhaps the cheapest MS in Data Science in the United States. Each course is $990 so the total tuition, all in, is $9900! They also accept full financial aid and provide veterans and alumni scholarships/discounts.
I’m really happy with the Eastern MS in Data Science program. I’ve also been a Graduate Assistant for 2 terms and it’s been a wonderful experience. I look forward to moving further in the program.
Are you interested in the Eastern Master of Science in Data Science program? Are you a current student? Let me know!