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Top 5 Leading Data Science Courses to Boost Your Credentials

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Career Tips / Courses / Data Science

Top 5 Leading Data Science Courses to Boost Your Credentials

According to Indeed, data scientists are currently some of the best-paid professionals, earning, on average, $122,875 per year. Glassdoor, one of the world’s biggest online job platforms, rates it the top-most profession. If you are thinking of becoming a data scientist, then now is the best time to pick one of the data science courses we have reviewed below.

The rise of the profession results from the need for more professionals who can extract meaningful information from the large swathes of data that consumers generate each day. More businesses and consumers are going digital. This means more digital devices, more online platforms, and ultimately more data. It’s paramount for organizations to comb through this data to extract patterns and trends that can help managements make better decisions. That’s where the data scientist comes in handy.

Aside from the high salaries, data science also offers a great life-work balance, with some tasks even doable via telework. It’s also a highly flexible career that can take you to pretty much any industry and organization in the world. So, you can always look forward to working for your favorite brands. Above all, you can choose to go it solo and become a consultant or freelance worker. The possibilities are endless.

5 Courses to Get You Started on Your Data Science Career

If you’re excited about the profession and would like to kick off your career, the following five courses offer an excellent starting point;

  1. Introduction to Data Science (Metis)

This is one of the best beginner courses if you’re entirely green in data science. The six-week course covers everything in the entire data science process and is the only course that is taught live on this list. Therefore, if you’re more excited by live coaching, then this is the course for you. Two nights per week, you’ll join an instructor with other students to learn data science as if you’re in an online college classroom. You can interact with the instructor, ask questions, and even arrange extra hours with the instructor if needed.

Some of the topics covered include computer science, statistics, linear algebra, exploratory data analysis, data visualization, and data modeling. The course costs $750, and you get a certificate upon completion as well as receive continuing education units.

  1. CS109 Data Science (Harvard)

Another excellent course for beginners, CS109 Data Science, is developed by Harvard University and offers all the fundamental topics you’d want to learn as you kick off your data science career. These include web scraping, regular expressions, data reshaping, and data cleanup. You’ll also learn about exploratory data analysis, pandas, statistical models, storytelling, and SQL.

The only caveat is that, unlike Coursera and edX courses, this isn’t an interactive course. Instead, you need to read on your own. But, you’re guaranteed to learn almost everything a newbie would want to know about data science. It’s free of charge.

  1. Data Science Specialization (Coursera)

Developed by the John Hopkins University, the Data Science Specialization course on Coursera is one of the most enrolled data science courses, and for a good reason. It greatly balances breadth and depth, offering learners the best mix of theory and application using the R programming language. Aside from R programming, the course also focuses on getting and cleaning data, exploratory data analytics, reproducible research, and regression models.

data science courses

You need some foundational knowledge of programming (not necessarily R, though) and a good understanding of algebra. Previous experience in linear algebra or calculus would be excellent. The course is free, but you can choose to pay $49/month for the certificate and graded materials.

  1. Applied Data Science with Python Specialization (Coursera)

Among the leading data science courses on Coursera is the Applied Data Science with Python Specialization. Developed by the University of Michigan and delivered via Coursera, this fantastic specialization course focuses on data science’s applied side. You’ll get a strong introduction to commonly used data science Python libraries such as Pandas, Ntworkx, Matplotlib, and nltk and learn how to use them on real data.

It’s worth noting that the course doesn’t cover the statistics needed for data science or derivations for various machine learning algorithms. However, it provides a comprehensive account of how to use and evaluate all the algorithms in Python. Therefore, it would be best if you have a background in R or other statistical concepts. It costs $49/month.

  1. Statistics and Data Science MicroMasters (edX)

If you don’t have a strong foundation in statistics and probability, then this course found on edX would be more appropriate. Developed by MIT, it’s a very well-rounded course that dedicates a lot of time to statistical content. Indeed, the first topic is; Probability, the science of uncertainty & data. After that, you’ll also learn about data analysis, statistics, and machine learning with Python.

Due to the advanced nature of the course, some experience with Python and single and multivariate calculus is necessary. There’s no introduction to Python or R. It costs $1,350.

Ready to Begin?

As you can see, some of these data science courses are very affordable, meaning you can start the learning processing right away. Others, however, require substantial investment. It’s usually a good idea to start with the free or inexpensive courses as you plan for the more expansive, premium ones.