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Data Science (MSc)

Course Description

This intensive programme in data science and software engineering is designed for graduates who are new to computer science and provides an excellent grounding for working as a data scientist or analyst in industry. You will gain a broad knowledge of computing and acquire programming and data analysis skills, as well as comprehensive, practical problem-solving and analytical skills. You will also critically explore current research and methodologies and have the opportunity to investigate an area of current research in more depth via a project.

If you are new to computer science, this programme provides a solid foundation for a career in IT as a data scientist or analyst. For those already working in IT, the programme is an ideal opportunity to strengthen and update your knowledge and skills in the areas of data science and software engineering, while obtaining a formal Master's qualification.

This programme has been funded by the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE), as part of an innovative initiative to fund conversion courses in computing and engineering. This course uniquely enables students without any previous computer or data science experience at undergraduate level to study towards a Master's degree in this area of emerging importance. Crucially, the course covers both data science and software engineering, a combination of skills sought after in industry.

Why study this course at Birkbeck?

This programme is ideal if you are new to computer science and want to develop a career in IT as a data scientist or analyst.
Our Department of Computer Science and Information Systems is one of the longest-established in the world - we are celebrating our 60th anniversary in 2017.
We provide a stimulating teaching and research environment, with academic specialists in all fields, including information and knowledge management, web and pervasive technologies, computational intelligence, and information systems development, among others.
Our research dates back to the late 1940s, when one of the first electronic computers was developed at Birkbeck by Dr Andrew Booth. We now house the Computational Intelligence Research Group and the Information Management and Web Technologies Research Group, both of which collaborate with other research groups and with industry, in the UK and abroad, and undertake interdisciplinary research in the life, natural and social sciences, and the humanities.
We are also part of the London Knowledge Lab, a unique collaboration between Birkbeck and the UCL Institute of Education, which brings together computer and social scientists to explore how we learn, the role of technology in this process, and how technology relates to broader social, economic and cultural factors.
In the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF), more than 75% of our research outputs in Computer Science were ranked world-leading or internationally excellent.
You will have 24-hour access to several laboratories of networked PCs with a range of language compilers, database and other application software. We are connected, via the SuperJANET network, to the computers of other academic institutions in London, elsewhere in the UK and abroad.

Visit the Data Science (MSc) page on the Birkbeck, University of London website for more details!

Student Profiles

Postgraduate Support Scheme for final-year undergraduates (full-time) - 20+ Awards

We are pleased to announce that, for October 2015 entry, Birkbeck has a limited number of new £10,000 postgraduate scholarships. These scholarships are for students progressing from a full-time undergraduate degree to a part-time Master’s degree starting in 2015/16.

Value of Scholarship(s)



To be eligible for the scholarship you must be:Starting a 2-year part-time taught Master’s degree in 2015/16
Domiciled in the UK/EU
Progressing from an undergraduate course for which you were charged the higher tuition fee (applicable since 2012–13)
Studying at postgraduate Master’s level for the first time

Application Procedure

If you want to apply for this support, you must follow these steps:Submit an application for your intended course
Submit an application for the Postgraduate Support Scheme

Further Information


Entry Requirements

A second-class honours degree, or equivalent, in any subject other than single-honours Computer Science, along with demonstrated aptitude as tested during the application process. Applicants with less than the required level of academic qualification may be considered if they have significant experience in the IT industry. If English is not your first language or you have not previously studied in English, our usual requirement is the equivalent of an International English Language Testing System (IELTS Academic Test) score of 6.5, with not less than 6.0 in each of the sub-tests.

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Recipient: Birkbeck, University of London
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