Data Science Is the Career of the Future. Here Are 5 Schools That Offer Courses Related to It
It’s no secret that the demand for data scientists and analysts has been growing exponentially over the last few years. According to Glassdoor, data scientist was the number one job in the US over the last four years. In the Philippines, Glassdoor estimates that the average annual salary for a data scientist is around P432,000, and many companies are now actively recruiting people with that specific job title.
However, a study last year by the Philippine Institute for Developing Studies (PIDS) noted that higher education institutions are not producing enough graduates to fill the steadily rising need for professionals in the field. According to the report, in 2019, data science and analytics (DSA)-related programs produced 176,597 professionals, but only 38 percent or about 62,583 workers were deemed ready to shift to the more in-demand and specialized DSA field. That year, there was a total of 81,078 DSA job roles that needed to be filled.
“Big data is now considered an economic resource, Rudy H. Tan, Ph.D. and Lourdes A. Tan, M Stat writes in their paper entitled Need For B.S. Data Science Degree Program In The Philippines. “According to a special report published by the Economist, it is ‘becoming the new raw material of business: an economic input almost on par with capital.’ Data science is the new discipline that can exploit big data for its economic value to transform information into insights needed to create better services and new products in the 21st century and beyond.”
Schools and universities have begun to answer the call to equip students with the right knowledge and skills to prepare them for a world where Big Data is king. If you’re interested, these schools are already offering programs focused on and related to Data Science and Analytics programs in the Philippines:
1| Asian Institute of Management (AIM)
AIM was the first to offer a Masters degree in Data Science in the country. In 2018 and 2019, the program placed third in Eduniversal’s ranking of the best masters in data analytics in the Far East, besting similar programs in Japan, Singapore, South Korea, and Malaysia.
“Data science is the fastest-growing and most sought-after specialization worldwide,” said AIM President and Dean Jikyeong Kang during the launch of the MSDS program in 2017. “The Master of Science in Data Science program is our most thought-through, most intelligent, and most appropriate response to prepare for the changes and challenges digitalization throws at us.”
2| University of the Philippines
The UP School of Statistics is actually the first school in Southeast Asia to offer an undergraduate degree program in statistics. The Professional Master in Data Science (Analytics) Program is offered through the School of Statistics. According to the school’s website, the program “is suited for professionals who have quantitative background and are hands-on with processing and/or analyzing data, or those who value the importance of empirical or evidenced-based decision making and see the potentials of using Statistics and/or analytics to achieve their goals.
“The program aims to equip professionals with a solid foundation in the theory and methods of statistical science and to be adept at statistical machine learning to solve real-world problems. Aside from the technical aptitude, students enrolled in the program are expected to have, at the end of the program, improved skills for research, presentation, communication, and decision-making.
3| Ateneo de Manila University
Ateneo’s MS Data Science program “is a research-oriented degree that provides foundation courses and a range of electives to pursue specific areas of interest. It has a six-unit credit capstone referred to as a thesis which requires an artifact as an output, a written report and an oral presentation.”
4| De La Salle University
DLSU has a Data Science Institute that offers programs that include a Minor in Data Science, A Master in Data Science, and a Diploma Course in Data Science. According to the DLSU website, the Minor in Data Science program "aims to produce data literate graduates by equipping the students across the different disciplines with a working knowledge of statistics, probability, and computation enabling them to design and execute precise computational and inferential data analysis for their discipline."
The education arm of listed STI Holdings said it started offering programs related to DSA through the STI Education Services Group (STI ESG) and STI West Negros University (WNU) during school year 2020 to 2021. These programs are a Bachelor of Science degree in Retail Technology and Consumer Science, and a two-year Associate degree in Retail Technology.
According to STI, the programs will teach students to apply data science and business analytics “to drive understanding of the changing market and consumer behavior, as well as to employ disruptive technologies. They will likewise be trained to utilize omnichannel retail marketing strategies to satisfy the changing consumer demands and varying purchasing habits.
“Upon graduation, students of the said programs will be ready for the future of work with specialized skills in the areas of Retail Marketing, Consumer Psychology, Information Technology and Data Science,” it added. “Graduates may become business analytics professionals, big data analysts, consumer analysts, consumer scientists, data scientists, digital marketing e-commerce specialists, and e-business data managers, among others.”