Data Analysis / Statistics & Data Science

Which degree is right for you?

What a great coincidence. I was reading a blog on AllAnalytics, Get Smart About Analytics Education, which describes some of the questions a potential student should be asking of the institute. Coincidentally, I have been having exactly the same thoughts recently while reviewing the various options to study data science in New Zealand and Australia.

The AllAnalytics post reports a series of questions that a prospective student should ask:

  • How is this program going to make me more marketable?

  • How will this program improve my selling points?

  • Will I acquire the right knowledge to work for a high-tech company or a finance institution — or any other industry of interest?

  • Will I get enough hands-on experience? (They should be able to say to an analytics manager, “I made impact X when working on this project sponsored by company Y,” Klabhan said.”)

and I would tend to agree. Below is what I want from a post-graduate degree program:

  • Hands-on, immersive experience.
  • The opportunity to dive underneath the surface and explore the theory, the fundamentals that underlie a topic / toolset / approach
  • Networking! This one is right up there. How will this program, this department, help me meet new and interesting people? Ultimately I am looking for some exposure to work places / companies / research institutes with really interesting work that are looking for someone just like me 🙂

When I really think about what is important to me, it falls into 3 simple ares: expertise, freedom to explore, and exposure.

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