MS in Data Science in the USA


Typically a 1.5 to 2 years program, the Master’s in Data Science is a specialized field of study that focuses on providing the perfect amalgam of training in statistics, computer and information science, and mathematics. This specialized domain is quickly gaining pace as a preferred option of study for ones with a knack for the analytical and the quantitative as data science helps mine crucial insights that guide important business decisions across industries.

Length of the program 1.5 to 2 years
Tuition Fees $25,000 – $100,000 per annum
Eligibility 3-year UG degree, coursework in quantitative fields (probability, linear algebra etc.) and familiarity in programming languages (R, Python, Java, etc.)
GPA Average class GPA ranges between 3.0 – 3.96
TOEFL/IELTS Average class scores are usually 80 and above for TOEFL and 6.5 and above for IELTS
GRE/GMAT Average class scores are 328 and above for GRE and 730 and above for GMAT
Curriculum The core concepts covered by the MS in Data Science curriculum include data mining, software development, statistics, data optimization, business intelligence, big data, machine learning
Career Roles Data Scientist, Data Analyst, Data Manager, Data Architect, Data Engineer, Business Analyst
Salary Depending on the role, location, expertise, and experience, one can start with an annual base salary of $95,000 – $ 125,000 post-completion of the MS in Data Science program.


Why MS in Data Science in USA?

While a master’s in Data Science is offered by several graduate schools around the world, the USA remains the preferred destination for students because of several factors:

Top Universities – USA houses some of the top listed graduate schools that offer MS in Data Science programs. Of the globally-ranked top-100 graduate schools, 40 are located in the USA. Naturally, the preference to study at top-ranked graduate schools is higher.

Academic Excellence – The American education system is well-known for its flexible and remarkable curriculum. The stellar faculty ascertains academic excellence and also delivers a holistic learning experience to the students.

Internships – Several internship opportunities offered by the USA graduate schools help to orient the students to the challenges of working with big brands and understanding the global market.

Research Opportunities – The universities are well-equipped with the latest laboratories and equipment that offer numerous scopes to the students to engage in research in the data science fields.

Career Prospects – The USA is a budding market for aspiring data scientists. Students who are eager to build a career in the USA can expect a starting annual salary of $125,000 as a data scientist. Even Glassdoor ranks the data scientist role as the second most sought-after role in the USA.

Diversity – As the melting pot of cultures, the USA has the excellent opportunity to be oriented to newer perspectives.


The Top MS in Data Science Programs in the USA

According to QS Rankings 2023, the following are the top master’s in Data Science programs in the USA:

Universities Master’s Programs
Stanford University Statistics – Data Science
Harvard University Data Science 
University of Pennsylvania  Data Science
Columbia University Data Science
University of Michigan – Ann Arbor Data Science
New York University Data Science
Duke University Data Science
Brown University Data Science
University of Washington Data Science
University of South California Computer Science – Data Science
University of Maryland  Data Science and Analytics
Arizona State University Computer Science – Big Data Systems
University of Rochester Data Science
George Washington University Data Science
University at Buffalo Engineering Science – Data Sciences
North Carolina State University Computer Science – Data Science
University at Albany  Data Science
Syracuse University  Applied Data Sciences
Georgia State University  Data Science and Analytics
North-eastern University  Data Science


Eligibility Requirements to Apply to Data Science Master’s Programs in the USA

With the steady rise in opportunities in the data science field, especially in a thriving economy like the USA, universities regularly witness strong competition for admission in every every upcoming intake in USA. The basic requirements to be able to apply to top-ranked graduate schools usually include a basic three-year undergraduate degree and coursework in calculus, linear algebra, statistics, probability, statistical inference, etc. and familiarity in programming languages such as R, Python, Java, C++, etc. Few institutions, such as Stanford, may mandate a four-year undergraduate program, which means that as an Indian student you would need to furnish post-grad academic experience as well. Usually, the schools do not have a minimum requirement for the test scores but do advise a competitive GPA of 3.0 and above, GRE score of 328 and above, GMAT score of 730 and above, TOEFL of 80 and above, IELTS of 6.5 and above. Professional experience is not a pre-requisite for applying to an MS in data science program, but exposure to practical challenges of the business atmosphere may help you better align with the electives and capstone selection.



Several need-based and merit-based scholarships, awarded by universities, third-party organizations, and governments of the students’ home countries, are available for international students studying MS in data science in the USA. A proven record of academic excellence and extra-curricular activities and/or justified need for financial aid will make you eligible for scholarship in USA. A few of these include:

  • ACM SIGHPC and The Intel Computational and Data Science Scholarships – Awarded by The Association for Computing Machinery’s Special Interest Group on High-Performance Computing, this will give you ~11,17,000 INR annually in scholarship amount.
  • Bill Caspar Memorial Diversity Scholarship – Awarded by The Collective, LLC, this will offer you ~7,45,000 INR annually in scholarship amount.
  • MinneAnalytics Data Science Scholarship – Awarded by Minne Analytics, this will pay ~75,000 INR to all the applicants and ~3,73, 000 to the grand winner of the award.
  • National GEM Consortium – Awarded by the GEM’s Masters Fellowship Program, this scholarship will pay you ~ 75,000 INR per academic term.


Career Prospects

As the digitization of the business world becomes a reality, the importance of data in determining business decisions remains undisputed, thereby skyrocketing the need for trained professionals who can read data to analyse and predict trends and impacts. Per a study conducted by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the need for data scientists is projected to grow 22% from 2020 to 2030. Undoubtedly, a post-grad in Data Science opens up many avenues for you in terms of lucrative career options. You can find interesting roles as a data scientist, data analyst, data manager, data architect, data engineer, business analyst, and consultant with such Fortune 500 firms as Apple, IBM, Microsoft, Amazon, etc. Usually, the annual pay for such roles can range anywhere between $95,000 and $192,000 depending on the location and your experience and expertise.

For further details on pursuing an MS in data science from the USA, Top Universities in the USA, Upcoming Intakes to Study in USA, Study Abroad, Jobs in USA, Scholarships in USA, Study in USA connect with our expert advisors at Manya Education Private Limited.

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Is MS in Data Science in the USA worth it?

Definitely, yes. The USA is the land of dreams, a thriving first-world country, and a hotbed for innovation and technological advancements. Moreover, the country stands proud of hosting over half of the globally ranked top-100 graduate schools. Hence, if you are looking for excellent academic resources, splendid faculty, state-of-the-art research opportunities, interesting internship and networking scope, and to own a fast-growing career in the cross-section of technology and business, you must pursue an MS in Data Science program from the USA.

Which university is best for MS in Data Science in the USA?

The USA has hundreds of top-ranked graduate schools offering data science master’s programs. These include the likes of Stanford, Harvard, Columbia, University of Michigan – Ann Arbor, and the University of Pennsylvania to name a few. You need to look into the application requirements, curriculum specifics, career prospects, location, fees and similar factors to be able to decide on the program that is the best fit for you.

How much will it cost to do MS in Data Science in the USA?

Depending on the program you select, the tuition fee for an MS in data science program in the USA can range between $25,000 and $100,000.

Is GRE required for MS in Data Science in USA?

Yes, most graduate schools need you to submit a GRE or a GMAT score to apply for an MS in data science in USA. In a few cases, GRE may not be needed or may even be waived. Please check the program requirements thoroughly before booking your GRE test dates.

Which country is best for data science?

The USA is the best country to pursue higher studies in data science and thereafter, secure a career in the domain.

How can I get a scholarship for MS in the USA?

Almost all colleges and several third-party organisations and even the governments of your home countries provide scholarships to help you achieve your dream academic exposure in the land of dreams, the USA. If scholarships are directly provided by the department/university that you are applying to, you will be automatically considered for the same. However, in a few cases, you may need to separately apply for these university-provided scholarships. For scholarships from third-party sources or government organisations, you need to check your eligibility and accordingly apply on the respective websites.

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