The UBC Department of Computer Science, established in May 1968, is one of the top computer science departments in North America. Recognized internationally for excellence in research and teaching with a conscious focus on interdisciplinary programs, the Department encourages diversity both within its community and areas of study, and plays a leadership role in research, teaching and outreach activities to champion the understanding and integration of Computer Science within all aspects of society.
For those students contemplating advanced studies in computer science at UBC, completing a master's degree before continuing to the PhD program confers several advantages. The two-year period of the master's first helps students decide whether a research career is the right career choice for them. If it is, taking this time helps give them the skills needed to pursue independent research. Second, the research experience gained can be very valuable as student work toward picking a PhD topic, as most professors in the department prefer that students shoulder this choice on their own. Third, a student who completes a master's degree and decides to work in industry prior to embarking on the full PhD has the opportunity to apply his or her skills and master's level education in the field and to take advantage of jobs that have attractive starting salaries.
The UBC Department of Computer Science has many contacts in the computing industry. A strong rapport between the industry and research communities is beneficial to both, especially in cases where the department focuses its research to developing real-world applications.
Our faculty and students actively interact with industry in numerous fields. Via internships, consulting and the launching of new companies, they contribute to the state-of-the-art in environmental monitoring, energy prediction, software, cloud computing, search engines, social networks, advertising, e-commerce, electronic trading, entertainment games, special effects in movies, robotics, bioinformatics, biomedical engineering, and more.
The transdisciplinary field of Science and Technology Studies (STS) emerged in the 1970s out of growing concern about the social and political effects of scientific and technological developments. Engaging with the human dimensions of science and technology, STS uses methods from a variety of perspectives associated with the humanities and social sciences. Faculty in our MA program come from English, Geography, History, Philosophy, Sociology, the School of Journalism, and the Faculty of Education. Topics for STS study include: how laboratories work, how to understand the development of scientific practices and technological objects in social context, examination of the ethics of science and technology, analysis of expertise and authority of science in democracies, understanding relations between science and public policy, and exploring representations of science and technology.
The Science and Technology Graduate Program is one of only two such programs in Canada, and the first to be housed in an Arts faculty. We have more than twenty full-time faculty in the program, with internationally recognized scholars who are committed to teaching and research. The small size of our program means that each student receives full attention and supervision. In addition, students benefit from our STS Colloquium Series which features prominent scholars from around the world. Our past visitors include: Lorraine Daston, Evelyn Fox Keller, Bruno Latour, Stephen Shapin, Isabelle Stengers, and many more.
The two-year M.A. program in STS is designed to give students opportunities to develop their understanding of the roles of science and technology in the contemporary world, and to work in fields such as science and technology policy, science journalism and communication, or curatorial positions in science and technology museums. Our graduates also pursue further studies in a Ph.D. program; recent graduates have gone on to York and Cornell.
Data. Knowledge. Action: these three words symbolize steps in the data science value chain.
The UBC Master of Data Science curriculum covers all stages of this chain, providing you with skills to focus on the “knowledge” section. Over 10 months, you will learn how to extract data for use in experiments, how to apply state-of-the-art techniques in data analysis and how to present extracted knowledge effectively to domain experts.
Data science can open your mind—and career path—to infinite possibilities. There is a growing need in many fields for people who can apply computational and statistical techniques to data and then effectively communicate results from analyses to various stakeholders.
The new UBC Master of Data Science is a professional program developed by the combined expertise of the UBC departments of Computer Science and Statistics to help meet this need and give students a fast track to a great career.
Utilizing descriptive and prescriptive techniques, students extract and analyze data from both unstructured and structured forms and then communicate the findings of those analyses in ways to enable organizations to make informed decisions based on data.
The Master of Data Science is not administered by the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies. Please check the program website for information about the application process.
The program provides practical, real-world-applicable experience via integrating real-world data sets across the courses.
Many other programs typically focus on producing graduates that are specialized either in statistical methods, or computational methods, but not both. UBC’s new Master of Data Science program enables graduates to span both the statistical and computational perspectives and effectively communicate those results to different stakeholders.
Candidates graduate with the skills to extract and analyze data and then communicate the findings of those analyses in compelling and clear ways to help organizations put data to work. The UBC Master of Data Science program gives you experience with a variety of data across a range of domains, and therefore exposure to a multitude of potential career avenues.