SOUTHFIELD—An unprecedented surge in the speed and power of computers is allowing the analysis of complex data sets to develop new vaccines, to analyze financial risk, to create efficient supply chains, or teach cars to drive themselves. A new degree at Lawrence Technological University will train students to analyze data to do all of those things—and more.
The new LTU Bachelor of Science in Data Science degree combines mathematics, physics, statistics, computer science, and data analysis. It will be managed by the Department of Mathematics and Computer Science in the LTU College of Arts and Sciences, but is highly interdisciplinary in nature—and may include course work and research with faculty in other areas on campus, such as the LTU College of Engineering, the LTU College of Business and Information Technology, and the Marburger STEM Center.
“Data science is a field with a bright future, and employers are clamoring for people with these skills,” LTU Provost Tarek Sobh said. “This new program shows how Lawrence Technological University moves quickly to the needs of the marketplace with high-quality academic programs that prepare our students for job titles that haven’t been invented yet.”
Data science graduates are in high demand. According to a report by the Business Higher Education Forum, 69 percent of employers expect candidates with data science skills to get preference for jobs in their organizations. In 2017, LinkedIn rated data science as the second fastest growing job, at a rate of 6.5 percent annual growth, and US News and World Report recently reported that the median salary for data scientists was $94,280.
The degree focuses on theory and practice in big data, data mining, machine learning, bioinformatics, mathematical modeling, and artificial intelligence, with students learning to study complex data sets and understand the patterns that each set can reveal.
First-year students will take courses in calculus, computer science, and statistics, along with foundational courses in history and literature. In the second year, there’s more mathematics and computer science, along with software coding, an introduction to data science, and technical and professional communication. By junior year, there’s more coding, along with text mining, data analytics, physics, machine learning, pattern recognition, artificial intelligence, and database systems. Senior year features more statistics, neural networks, modeling, and IT electives, and a senior project focused in medicine, biomedical engineering, machine learning, big data, information technology, and other exciting fields.
Students will also have access to paid internships, which frequently lead to full-time employment, and will work on team projects that hone team-building and leadership skills.
As with all LTU programs, there are convenient schedules that include day, evening and online classes, and students will have access to LTU’s well-connected career placement services.
For more information on this new program, visit www.ltu.edu/data-science.