The Master of Data Science is intended for applicants who are technically skilled, passionate and seeking an intellectually stimulating career. Recent graduates, early career professionals, or career transitioners who have technical expertise are encouraged to apply. Data scientists will play a pivotal role in supporting organizations that need help organizing and leveraging the massive amounts of diverse data they collect. 

Our well balanced dual-framework curriculum in Computational and Statistical methods will prepare you with the full spectrum of theories and methods to understand and make predictions about the world around us. Join the Master of Data Science and be at the cutting edge of technology. 

Balanced Curriculum

Computational and Statistical Foundations for Data Science

15-Month Duration

15-Month long program to provide you with the skills necessary to drive your career forward

STEM Certified

Eligible for 36-month Optional Practical Training

At the Donald Bren School of Information and Computer Science, we believe that the diversity of our students both shapes and impacts their experience within the MDS program and the Orange County technology ecosystem. We seek well-rounded, intellectually curious individuals who are ready to become confident and respected leaders in the field of Data Science.

Admissions Information

The MDS program will start accepting applications for Fall 2022 starting on October 1st, 2021.

Deadlines:

December 15th, 2021
January 15th, 2022
March 15th, 2022
April 15th, 2022* Last Deadline for International Applicants
June 1st, 2022 * Last Deadline for Domestic Applicants

Applications are submitted online. The Master of Data Science early application deadline is December 15th, 2021, and will be accepting applications on a rolling basis until June 1st, 2022. It is your responsibility to ensure all parts of your application are completed by the stated deadline date. We encourage applicants to submit as early as possible. 

After submitting your completed application, the Admissions Committee will carefully review your information and you should receive a decision within two months of the stated application deadline.

Scholarships are on a need basis.

Applicants for admission must have completed a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution. Candidates are evaluated on their academic record and potential for success as demonstrated in the submitted application materials listed below. We recommend you verify all application information before submitting. Once you submit your application, you can no longer update it for the remainder of the application cycle.

Transcripts from all institutions attended (with English translation if needed):

Please upload unofficial copies of transcripts for each college and university attended with your online application. Transcripts scanned and uploaded to your application will be used to conduct the initial review. If you are admitted and have decided to attend UCI, you will be asked to submit official transcripts.

Send official transcripts to:

Graduate Division
120 Aldrich Hall
Irvine, CA 92697-3180
E. grad@uci.edu

Candidates may apply to the program if they hold the equivalent of a four-year US Bachelor’s degree. Transcripts from non-US universities should include evidence of degree conferral (proof of graduation). International applicants should refer to the International Applicant page for more specific requirements.

Three Letters of RecommendationThree letters of recommendation are required for your application. References can be either academic and/or professional. Letters of recommendation are submitted through the online application system.
Essays

PERSONAL HISTORY STATEMENT demonstrating your writing and communication ability. The personal statement should include: a personal history describing your previous professional and academic achievements.

STATEMENT OF PURPOSE providing a statement of your personal, academic, and professional goals, as well as why and how the MDS program will help you achieve these goals.

Official TOEFL or IELTS (International applicants – Scores valid for two years)

Per UCI Graduate Division, the minimum score for admission for the Internet-based test is 80. TOEFL scores are valid for up to two years from your test date. Applicants may receive a waiver of the TOEFL if all of the requirements for the high school diploma, bachelor’s degree or an advanced degree were completed in a country where the primary and dominant language is English and English was the language of instruction of the school. For a list of countries that qualify please click here. Exam results should be sent to UC Irvine institution code: 4859. For more information on the TOEFL, visit toefl.org.

As an alternative to the TOEFL, you may also take the Academic Modules of the International English Language Testing System (IELTS). For the IELTS, the minimum required score for admission is 7, with a score of no less than 6 on any individual module.

UC Irvine Graduate Division only accepts scores submitted electronically by the IELTS test center. No paper Test Report Forms will be accepted. An institutional code is NOT required. Please contact the test center directly where you took the IELTS test and request that your test scores be sent electronically using the IELTS system. All IELTS test centers worldwide are able to send scores electronically to our institution.

GRE

NOTE* – The GRE is WAIVED for ALL APPLICANTS for the 2021-2022 Application Cycle.

The GRE is waived for 2021-2022 application cycle. If you choose to submit a GRE score, there are no minimum score requirements. The admissions team is looking for evidence of strong verbal and quantitative skills.

If you do not submit a GRE score this will not be held against you in the application.

If you take an exam multiple times, we will take the highest total score earned. The Admissions Committee does not average exam scores. While there is no minimum GRE score to apply, we do expect that applicants will have an overall competitive profile.

GRE scores are valid for up to five years from your test date. Exam results should be sent to UC Irvine institution code: 4859. For more information on the GRE, visit ets.org/gre.

Application Fee

Your application cannot be reviewed until UCI has received your non-refundable application fee ($120 for U.S. Citizens and lawful U.S. Permanent Residents, and $140 for all other applicants).

Fee Waivers are available to qualified domestic applicants only. Eligibility to apply for a fee waiver is determined by program participation, US veteran status, or demonstrated financial need based on information requirements specified on the application. For more information please visit Fee Waivers | Graduate Division.

Additional minimum course requirements include: 

    • One computer programming course (Preferably C++ or Python).
    • Three semesters’ Calculus, Linear algebra, and Introductory Probability and Statistics.

We encourage applicants from all backgrounds to apply, though preference will generally be given to those with degrees in STEM fields including data science, computer science, statistics or biostatistics, computer or electrical engineering. We also seek those who demonstrate strong communication and conceptual thinking skills.

We strongly encourage all applicants to additionally submit relevant work portfolio, GitHub, or Kaggle information.

The Master of Data Science uses a Holistic Review process, which refers to mission-aligned admissions processes that consider applicants’ experiences, attributes, and academic metrics, as well as the value an applicant, would contribute to learning, practice, and teaching. Holistic Review allows admissions committees to consider the “whole” applicant, rather than disproportionately focusing on any one factor.

Core PrinciplesApplicant selection criteria are broad, clearly linked to the University of California, Irvine, the Donald Bren School of Information and Computer Science, and the Master of Data Science mission and goals, and promote numerous aspects of diversity as essential to excellence.


Selection criteria include experiences and attributes as well as academic performance. These criteria are:

  • Used to assess applicants in light of their unique backgrounds and with the intent of creating a richly diverse selection pool and student body,
  • Applied equitably across the entire candidate pool, and
  • Supported by student performance data that show that specific experiences or characteristics are linked to that individual’s likelihood of success as a student and professional in the field of data science. 

The Master of Data Science considers each applicant’s potential contribution to both the school and the field of data science, allowing the admissions committee the flexibility to weigh and balance the range of criteria needed in a class to achieve our mission and goals.

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