Can you become a data scientist without a university education?

Getting a degree seems a difficult task since it requires time, effort, money, and resources to use for a number of years. Average cost of a university education is increasing year over year. While being a student, we often ask if it is possible to become a professional and get a job even without obtaining a degree. The truth of the matter is that it is possible to develop marketable skills without getting a formal university degree. The best part is that you can do all of this while studying.

If you are interested in mathematic ,statistics  or love to analyze data patterns and business models, then you might as well become a data scientist. But, do you need a degree for this particular field of study? After all, Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, and Mark Zuckerberg were college dropouts but became ultimately successful in the tech industry. The answer is not entirely.

How to learn data science?

Proper training is the foundation of becoming a qualified data scientist, but this does not always imply that you should graduate with a degree related to this field. It only suggests that you have to search for ways to get skills to become one. Lucky for you, we have outlined these ways to save you some time and make a decision later on.

Data science is a combination of computer engineering, big data, statistics, business, data mining, and machine learning. It does not mean, however, that you should be an expert in all of these fields.

Rather, becoming a data scientist is about being able to connect these fields to optimize business data and get rid of inefficiencies. Thus, you should learn a lot of methodologies, processes, and techniques, as well as business vision and action.

The current salary range of an entry-level data scientist is estimated to be $80,000-$95,000 annually.

This rate can grow as high as $250,000 annually for experienced manager-level professionals. Experience is considered the most crucial factor in a data scientist’s salary, which is why it is important for you to obtain skills in new data science programs that are now offered online.

There are thousands of opportunities to study data science online. Most are provided by Edureka, Coursera, Codecademy, and edX which are online platforms that offer free data science courses taught by well-known professionals, universities, and corporations. Aside from these platforms, companies also share similar features. Some of these companies are Microsoft through their Microsoft Learn program, IBM Data Science Professional Certificate in Coursera, and SAS Data Science Certification in SAS Academy.

Data science programs generally take less time to earn a certification, usually around 6 months — much better than a 4-year undergraduate course. They also cost little or nothing at all, freeing you from big college loans. What’s also substantial about these programs is that many industries will accept you for a job as long as you have certifications. These certifications are only achieved if you finish classes that mostly require working on real-world projects and rigorous course training to really sharpen your skills.

While it looks easy to enroll in data science programs online, you still have to educate yourself about fundamental skills like algorithm design, computational complexity, software and programming languages, and distributed architecture.

A career path for the majority of entry-level data scientists is by being an independent consultant. As a consultant, you have to be knowledgeable about deep domains, programming, and basic presentation skills. You should know how to give value, how to analyze sales lift, and how to organize a consulting project.

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