Lower Division Requirements


Data 8, Foundations of Data Science (CS/INFO/STAT C8), introduces students to the field of Data Science through computational and inferential thinking. Intended for students of all backgrounds, it has no prerequisites.

Beyond Data 8, a firm mathematical foundation allows students to understand with precision the ideas and methods of data science. Calculus forms a basis for studying distributions and optimization. Linear algebra leads to understanding properties of arrays of data, including dependence and dimensionality.  Program structures provides students with a rigorous working knowledge of computer science concepts important for data analytics, including algorithms,  interpretation, abstraction, and a proficiency of programming based upon them sufficient to construct substantial stand-alone programs. Data structures establish algorithmic foundations that dictate whether a computational process is efficient or intractable, and understanding properties of arrays, lists, trees, graphs, heaps, hashes and associated computational and storage complexity is as essential to data science as its mathematical foundations.


  • A minimum 2.0 overall Grade Point Average is required to remain in good standing.
Declaration Eligibility
  • The prerequisites to declare the major are Foundations of Data Science, Calculus I, Calculus II, Linear Algebra, Program Structures, and Data Structures.
  • All prerequisites to declare must be completed for a letter grade and passed with a 'C-' or higher.
  • Students must achieve a 2.0 Grade Point Average in Data 8, Linear Algebra, and Data Structures to be eligible to declare. The grades earned in Calculus I & II and Program Structures will not be factored into this GPA requirement.
  • If a student chooses to take more than one upper-division course toward the major prior to declaring, they must have a minimum 2.0 Grade Point Average in all upper-division courses completed toward the major at the time of declaration.
Declaration Process
  • Students will be able to apply to declare during the semester they expect to complete their last remaining prerequisites, and their application will be evaluated upon receipt of grades for that semester.

For Incoming Students (Fall 2018)

The table below reflects the lower-division courses that incoming students (both new first-year and transfer) must take to declare the Data Science major.

This table contains some differences from the table to the right  because there are some course substitution exceptions associated with the transitional period of the new major. These exceptions are included in the table to the right, and only apply to continuing students who may have completed different courses before the Data Science major was available.

Going forward, the courses below are the required prerequisites to declare.

Requirement Preferred Track Alternate Course Options
Foundations of Data Science Data 8 (COMPSCI/STAT/INFO C8)
Calculus I Math 1A Math 10A or 16A
Calculus II Math 1B
Linear Algebra Math 54 or Stat 89A (4 unit offering) EL ENG 16A and EL ENG 16B (both required), or Physics 89
Program Structures CS 61A or CS 88 ENGIN 7
Data Structures CS 61B

For Continuing Students

Requirement Preferred Track Alternate (1)
Alternate (2)
Foundations of Data Science Data 8 (COMPSCI/STAT/INFO C8) STAT 135* + [CS 61A or ENGIN 7] for courses taken through Fall 2018 [STAT 20 or STAT 21 or STAT 131A] + [CS 61A or ENGIN 7] for courses taken through Fall 2018
Calculus I Math 1A Math 10A Math 16A
Calculus II Math 1B Math 1B after completing 10B Math 1B after completing 16B
Linear Algebra Math 54 or Stat 89A (4 unit offering) EL ENG 16A and EL ENG 16B (both required) PHYSICS 89
Program Structures CS 61A or CS 88 ENGIN 7
Data Structures CS 61B
*Stat 133 + [CS 61A or Engin 7] will be considered via petition for the grandfathering mechanism to substitute Data 8, for students who completed the courses in Spring 2018 or earlier. This is to accomodate students who took Stat 133 on our prior advice. A student's prior preparation in Statistics and Inference will be assessed when reviewing petitions.

Program Updates

Updated 12/06 at 5:12pm.

All intended Data Science majors will need to complete the pre-declaration survey (bit.ly/ds-predeclaration) before gaining access to advising and declaration.

Linear Algebra:

  • We accept linear algebra without differential equations from California community colleges in all cases where the course is included in a Math 54 articulation agreement. Linear algebra courses from non-California community colleges may be considered by individual petition.

Courses taken P/NP:

  • Prerequisite courses taken on a P/NP basis before Fall 2018 will be accepted. Grades of ‘P’ earned will be evaluated as ‘C-’ for GPA calculation purposes. Courses taken on a P/NP basis after Summer 2018 will not be accepted.