Six Unexpected Benefits of Earning a Master of Science in Data Science

December 15, 2023

Whether you’re looking to increase your earning potential, expand your remote work options, or are simply interested in data science, a data science master’s can set you up for success in a highly competitive, rapidly evolving field. Part-time programs, like the Online M.S. in Data Science from Stevens Institute of Technology, let you strengthen your skill set, master the latest technologies and make new connections, all while continuing to work full time. 

Those are some of the most obvious benefits of an MSDS. The degree also offers several unexpected benefits, which this article discusses.

What is a Master of Science in Data Science?

A Master of Science in Data Science can help you develop the expertise to analyze and interpret large, complex datasets using analytical tools and machine learning technology. As the volume of available data and its potential applications continues to expand, demand for this skill set should also increase.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (2022), the data science field should grow 35% over the next decade, creating more than 17,000 new job openings each year. Pursuing a data science master’s can distinguish you as a strong candidate for in-demand data science jobs across various industries, including: 

  • Digital advertising: By employing advanced statistical and optimization methods, data scientists can analyze advertising campaign performance and help marketers optimize ads for better results. 
  • Entertainment: Data scientists can help design artificial intelligence-powered algorithms to customize user experiences and process consumption data. 
  • Finance: At finance companies, data scientists use predictive modeling and data analysis techniques to identify trends earlier, improving outcomes. 
  • Gaming: Data scientists help gaming developers understand how people play games, enabling them to create more engaging experiences and increase their profits.
  • Healthcare: Data scientists in the healthcare industry use statistical methods to improve patient outcomes, improve efficiency and support research efforts. 
  • Internet search: Through cognitive computing, machine learning and natural language processing (NLP), data scientists help search engines deliver relevant content to users. 
  • Online shopping: Data scientists leverage big data technologies and neural networks to extract powerful insights that vendors can use to improve the online shopping experience.

Six Unexpected Benefits of Earning an MSDS 

In MSDS programs like the Stevens online master’s in data science, you can gain key competencies that prepare you to succeed in the data science field. You’ll take classes covering topics such as time series analysis, predictive modeling, and data visualization. You’ll also build proficiency in leading industry tools and programming languages, including Hadoop, Python and R, and TensorFlow. 

With these highly valuable data science skills, you’ll be ready to support AI development, identify patterns in large datasets, convey key insights to business stakeholders, and help companies make more strategic decisions. 

While the desire to gain technical skills is the most obvious reason to enroll in an MSDS program, pursuing this advanced degree can also provide some unexpected yet equally valuable opportunities for professional development, including the six explored below.

Interdisciplinary Expertise

Data science draws upon statistics, computer science and mathematical principles; the best MSDS programs focus on each of these areas. Stevens’ Online MSDS program offers courses in mathematics, statistics methods and cognitive computing to provide students a robust skill set with wide business applications.

Problem-Solving Skills

Problem solving lies at the heart of data science, a key skill with professional and personal applications. As a student in an MSDS program, you’ll learn how to take a structured, methodical approach to problem analysis and solving. Stevens’ deep learning course, for example, offers hands-on opportunities to hone your problem-solving skills on such challenges as self-driving automobiles, face recognition and automated game play.

Communication Skills

Data scientists must know how to communicate complex information to their non-technical business stakeholders. At Stevens, you can hone your communication skills through class discussions and projects in which you learn how to discuss business problems and potential solutions effectively.

Time Management

Many students in the Stevens Online M.S. in Data Science program pursue their degree part time while working full time. Since they spend nine to 12 hours a week on coursework and class sessions, time management is essential. As an Online MSDS student, you’ll learn how to balance your studies with your career, mastering a valuable skill you can use in other areas of your life. 

Self-Confidence

Completing a demanding data science graduate program while continuing to work and meet personal obligations represents a significant achievement. With your new degree in hand, you can confidently move forward in your career knowing you have the perseverance, technical expertise and soft skills employers look for in candidates.

Networking Opportunities

Building a strong professional network can yield benefits such as new job opportunities, career advice and insights into different industries. When you join a small cohort-based program like the Stevens Online MSDS, you’ll form lasting bonds with peers and data science faculty who are invested in your success. 

Many Stevens faculty members consult for top companies such as Microsoft, IBM and Google, and bring a wealth of experience to the classroom. The online format creates a community of classmates from around the world with diverse perspectives.

Earn Your MSDS Online From Stevens Institute of Technology

Employers seek data scientists with technical knowledge to do the job and the communication, time management and problem-solving skills to be productive employees. Enrolling in a data science master’s program can help you develop the hard and soft skills needed to build a thriving career in any industry.

When you choose the Stevens Online MSDS, you’ll have the flexibility to complete your degree from anywhere while continuing at your job. In two years or less, you’ll gain a deep understanding of data science concepts and industry tools so you’re prepared to adapt and respond to accelerated changes in technology. Your classes and projects will create opportunities to connect with your peers and faculty, enabling you to hone your communication and collaboration skills. 

With a well-rounded education from Stevens, you’ll be ready to take on new challenges and harness the power of data to move the field forward. Ready to take the next step in your data science career? Reach out to an enrollment advisor with any questions about our program or start your application today.