Data science – is it a career worth pursuing?

The answer to the question “is a data science career worth it?” Yes! Did you know data scientists are globally in-demand and are well compensated IT roles? One of the key reasons for data scientists to be prominent and hold such value is because they work on volumes of data, evaluate trends, and keep track of any changes that impact business decisions, ultimately helping the organizations they work for to stay competitive. To alleviate the demand for data science professionals, the emerging data science field can be a rewarding path for professionals as well as students. Let us read through the meaning of data science, the required skills, and data scientist certifications, which are vital for students and young professionals to stay ahead of the competition.

What is data science?

Data science is a field of study that blends domain expertise, knowledge of mathematics, programming skills, and statistics to extract meaningful insights from data. Junior and senior data scientists apply machine learning algorithms to images, audio, video, text, and more to produce AI systems that perform tasks ordinarily requiring human intelligence.

Responsibilities of a data scientist

If you are seeking to be a data scientist in the future, you will need to:

  • Work closely with your business to identify several issues and use data to propose solutions for sound decision making
  • Design experiments and build algorithms to interrogate, manage, merge and extract data to supply tailored reports to customers, colleagues, or the wider company
  • Use statistical techniques and machine learning tools to provide solutions to problems
  • Maintain coherent and clear communication, both written and verbal, to understand report results and data needs

As a senior data scientist you will also need to:

  • Train, lead, and recruit a team of data scientists
  • Have the responsibility of the company’s data science strategies
  • Set up new processes and systems and look for opportunities to improve the data flow.

Skills and qualifications required to become a data scientist

Data scientist skills

You will require these vital skills to work efficiently as a data scientist

  • Data visualization: This is a technique involved in graphical data representation using visual components like spot trends, graphs, and charts. It is a key element for big data scientists as they need to communicate effectively to get buy-in and convey key messaging for proposed solutions.
  • Programming: This helps a data scientist to move from the theoretical area into creating practical applications. Most businesses will expect a data scientist to know about Python and R as well as other programming languages
  • Machine learning methods: Having an expert level of knowledge in every aspect of machine learning is not necessary, but a level of familiarity will be expected. Logistic regression, decision trees and other key elements enabled by machine learning are the skills looked for by potential employers
  • Math and statistics: Data-driven organizations will expect a data scientist to understand different statistical approaches to help make decisions and recommendations.

Qualifications of a data scientist

According to the University of Wisconsin’s data science department, senior data scientists and other big data scientists are highly educated,

  • Over 88 percent have at least a masters’ degree
  • 46 percent have PhDs.
  • However, to begin at an entry-level in this field you will at least require:
  • A bachelor’s degree in technology, computer science, applied sciences, engineering, or any other related fields with basic proficiency in using Python, R, or any other programming language.
  • A minimum of two years of work experience in this field is a great way to get employer attention

Apart from these qualifications, students can opt for data scientist certifications online. This is important because the demand for data scientists is growing along with rising competition in this field. Earning a certification provides legitimacy that you are well-equipped with the key skills that will inevitably lead to a successful career in this field.

Data scientist certifications

The following are a few data scientist certifications that students and professionals can earn from well-known institutions.