About this course
Become a proficient data scientist with a master’s in Data Science at the University of Southampton.
You’ll study the latest techniques and technologies, including data mining, machine learning, and data visualisation. By the end of your studies, you’ll be able to develop original ideas and solve problems using advanced data science methods. You can apply what you have learned in fields such as data journalism, open government and social media.
Data scientists help organisations handle large amounts of data produced by digital technologies. Southampton is recognised around the world as a leader in many of the topics that form our data science curriculum. We offer one of the only data science master's programmes in the UK that covers every subject needed to become a skilled data scientist in industry, government or academia.
Our module teachers use their latest research to inform their teaching in emerging topics like:
- intelligent agents
- computational finance
- open data innovation
- the science of online social networks
- deep learning
Module options are flexible, so you can pursue your interests and adapt the programme to prepare you for your ideal career. We’ll also give you access to dedicated project labs, computer workstations, and infrastructure for large-scale analysis.
Your course leader specialises in database systems research, with a focus on using data appropriately and effectively. Visit Dr Age Chapman’s staff profile to learn more about her work.
MSc Data Science at the University of Southampton
This course is based at Highfield.
This qualification is awarded by the University of Southampton.
Download the programme specification
The programme specification sets out the learning outcomes of this course and details how the course is taught and assessed.
In light of COVID-19, we’ve made changes to some elements of course delivery for 2020-21. For details as to how this has changed delivery for this course, please view the Addendum to the Programme Specification PDF.
You’ll need an upper 2:1 degree in one of the following subjects:
- computer science
- computer engineering
- software engineering
You must also have an upper 2:1 score in the following modules:
- a programming module (e.g. MATLAB, Python, Java, C, C++, C#)
- an advanced maths module, ideally statistics and probability
Find the equivalent international qualifications for your country.
English language requirements
If English isn't your first language, you'll need to complete an International English Language Testing System (IELTS) to demonstrate your competence in English. You'll need an overall score of 6.5 and the following scores for reading, writing, listening and speaking:
IELTS score requirements
We accept other English language tests, find out which English language tests we accept.
Got a question?
If you're not sure that you have the right experience or qualifications to get onto this course please contact our enquiries team; we're very happy to help.Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Tel: +44(0)23 8059 5000
COVID-19: we've made some changes to the structure of the course for this academic year. Download the programme specification addendum in 'About this course' to learn more.
This is a full-time master’s course. You’ll study for 12 months, from September to the following September.
In the first 9 months (semesters 1 and 2) you'll study the taught part of your course.
This is made up of modules that everyone on the course takes, and modules we’ll ask you to choose from a list of options. You'll take exams at the end of both semesters.
You’ll also begin preparing for your final project during semester 1, and continue this work in semester 2.
For the last 3 months, over the summer, you’ll work independently to research and write your dissertation. You’ll have one-to-one meetings with your supervisor during this time to discuss your progress.
Want more detail? See all the modules in the course.
COVID-19: we've made some changes to our modules for this academic year. Download the programme specification addendum in 'About this course' to learn more.
For entry in Academic Year 2020-21
You must study the following modules:
You must also choose from the following modules:
Learning and assessment
COVID-19: we've made some changes to our learning and assessment methods for this academic year. Download the programme specification addendum in 'About this course' to learn more.
We teach most modules through a mixture of lectures, seminars and practical work.
We’ll work with you to improve your general knowledge of data science and develop your skills in:
- using high-performance computing clusters
- working with cloud-based infrastructure
- devising and applying Big Data analytics techniques
- analysing data with machine learning tools
- creating data visualizations to communicate information
You’ll also be able to choose between several diverse topics to suit your interests.
Depending on the modules that you take, we’ll assess your progress through a mixture of:
- lab reports
- problem solving exercises
- design and programming exercises
- individual and group projects
- your compulsory dissertation
This is an opportunity to show your understanding of data science techniques and methods of enquiry. You will carry out a research project lasting 3 to 4 months, assessed by a 15,000-word dissertation
Your personal tutor is there to offer advice, help you choose modules, and provide general support if you need it. You can talk to your module tutors about any subject-specific questions. You’ll also be able to access the Electronics and Computer Science (ECS) Student Advisory Team for pastoral support.
Our graduates are sought after by:
- companies looking for trends in sales, marketing or operational data
- start-ups pursuing new opportunities in big data
- government departments using linked open data to inform policy
- research/consultancy companies analysing data on behalf of their clients
- academic organisations with opportunities for doctoral study
We run a dedicated careers hub connected to over 100 organisations including:
We also support aspiring entrepreneurs through a blend of networks, mentors, societies and our on-campus start-up incubator. Find out more about enterprise and entrepreneurship opportunities.
Careers services at Southampton
We're a top 20 UK university for employability (QS Graduate Employability Rankings 2019). Our Careers and Employability Service will support you throughout your time as a student and for up to 5 years after graduation. This support includes:
- work experience schemes
- CV/resume and interview skills workshops
- networking events
- careers fairs attended by top employers
- a wealth of volunteering opportunities
- study abroad and summer school opportunities
We have a vibrant entrepreneurship culture. You'll be able to take advantage of:
Fees, costs and funding
Fees for a year's study:
- UK/EU students pay £9,250.
- International students pay £25,450.
What your fees pay for
Your tuition fee covers the full cost of tuition and all examinations.
10% alumni discount
If you’re a graduate of the University of Southampton you get a 10% discount on your postgraduate tuition fees.
Postgraduate Master’s Loans (UK and EU nationals only)
This can help with course fees and living costs while you study a postgraduate master's course. Find out if you're eligible.
Funding your postgraduate studies
A variety of additional scholarships, grants and bursaries may be available to help you fund your master’s study, both from the University and from other organisations.
How to apply
You can apply directly through our online form by using the apply button on this page.
You must get your application to us by the end of the day on 31 July 2020. You must supply all supporting documentation at least 2 weeks before starting your course.
We cannot guarantee you'll be able to start your course if you do not meet these deadlines.
When you apply you’ll need to submit a personal statement explaining why you want to take the course.
You’ll need to include information about:
- your knowledge of the subject area
- why you want to study a postgraduate qualification in this course
- how you intend to use your qualification
You'll also need to send 2 academic references.
Please include the required paperwork showing your first degree and your IELTS English language test score (if you are a non-native English speaker) with your application. Without these, your application may be delayed.
Learn more about how to apply with our postgraduate application guide.
What happens after you apply
You'll be able to track your application through our online Applicant Record System.
We will assess your application on the strength of your:
- academic achievements
- relevant professional experience
- personal statement
- academic references
We'll get back to you within 6 weeks with a decision about your application.
Equality and diversity
We treat and select everyone in line with our Equality and Diversity Statement.
Got a question?
Please contact us if you're not sure you have the right experience or qualifications to get onto this course.
Tel: +44(0)23 8059 5000