The Graduate Certificate in Data Science is is designed for the part-time student who wants to improve their skills in managing, visualizing and modeling with data. The stand-alone certificate program is located at both the Western Carolina University main campus in Cullowhee and the instructional site at Biltmore Park-Asheville.
The Graduate Certificate in Data Science is a 13-credit-hour program designed for the part-time student who wants to improve their skills in managing, visualizing and modeling data. With evening and hybrid courses, the program can be completed one course per semester in four semesters plus a capstone in the final semester.
Students who complete the certificate will know how to synthesize modes of thought in statistics, computer science, and mathematics; understand both the computational and modeling challenges in a task; use data visualization to interpret models and identify weaknesses; build and assess statistical and machine learning models and draw conclusions of appropriate scope; apply algorithmic problem-solving skills and implement solutions through programming in a high-level language, manage data; and communicate results orally and in writing.
Students complete the certificate with a one-credit capstone course, in which the student can engage in a research project with a faculty member, design a research project related to their employment, or intern in data science in government or industry.
By 2018, the U.S. alone could face a shortage of 140,000 to 190,000 people with deep analytical skills as well as 1.5 million managers and analysts with the know-how to use the analysis of big data to make effective decisions. [McKinsey Global, 2011, accessed 04 Mar 2021]
Since the start of the COVID-19 outbreak, 85% of companies have accelerated digitization and 67% of companies have accelerated automation and artificial intelligence [McKinsey Global, accessed 04 Mar 2021]
Documented demand for data science in Asheville and Western NC include NOAA National Centers for Environmental Information, The Collider (a nonprofit network for climate change solutions), HCA Mission Health and other area health care, light manufacturing in technology and medicine, and the craft beverage industry