FAQs

This page provides updated FAQs about the Data Science major and minor. It is current as of September 2018. The Letters & Science Data Science major (B.A.) has been fully approved and is available for students starting in Fall 2018.

A separate page covers FAQs for individual courses (such as Data 8, connectors, and Data 100) and more information about the program as a whole.

To ask questions and see more answers about the Data Science major and proposed minor and other aspects of the Data Science program, please check out: piazza.com/berkeley/other/data001.

 

Updated 9/07 at 5:35pm.

Data Science Major

When will there be a Data Science major?

  • The Letters & Science Data Science major has been approved! We are building the processes necessary to begin declaring students and tracking their graduation progress. The L&S Data Science major is available for students to declare beginning in Fall 2018.
  • The FAQs on this website will be updated with current information as it is available.

How and when can I declare the L&S Data Science major?

  • In Fall 2018, the major declaration process will be handled through our Data Science Advising bCourse. Interested students should complete the Pre-Declaration Survey: (bit.ly/ds-predeclaration) to assess your level of progress toward the Data Science major and gain access to the bCourse, including additional details about the declaration process. We expect that all currently eligible students will be able to apply to the major by mid-October.

I've advanced beyond Data 8. Are there any other ways to meet the Data 8 requirement for the major?

  • For students admitted prior to Fall 2018a transitional period, we will allow a "grandfathered" option to substitute for Data 8, if completed no later than Fall 2018:

    • Stat 20, 21, 131A, or 135 and

    • CS 61A or ENGIN 7

I'm interested in doing the EdX course, Data 8X, online. Will this satisfy the Data 8 requirement for the major?

  • No, unfortunately Data 8X doesn't have all the content of Data 8, and does not transfer academic credit.

I may want to major in Data Science, but I’ve already declared (or I’m on the pathway to declaring) another major. What should I do?

  • Talk to a Data Science advisor about the possibility of adding a double major or changing your major. Fill out the Pre-Declaration Survey (bit.ly/ds-predeclaration) to assess your level of progress towards the Data Science major and to gain access to Data Science advising.

Will I be able to double major?

  • Yes, in line with Cal’s usual double major policies, detailed here.

Will there be a GPA threshold? Will this be a capped major?

  • We hope to meet as much student demand as we can. 

  • All of the lower-division prerequisites to declare must be completed with a grade earned of 'C-' or higher, and students will need to achieve a 2.0 Grade Point Average in Data 8, Linear Algebra, and Data Structures to be eligible to declare.

  • See more details on the major requirements page.

I already completed one or more of the courses for the major on a Pass/Not Pass basis. Will they be accepted?

  • In order to accommodate students who took major requirements P/NP prior to the approval of the major, we will accept grades of "Passed" for courses taken to satisfy the lower-division prerequisites needed to declare, when completed in Summer 2018 or earlier. No petition process will be necessary, and a "Passed" grade will be considered a "C-" for GPA calculation for eligibility purposes. Students will still need to ensure they meet the 2.0 GPA in Data 8, Linear Algebra, and Data Structures to declare the major.

I’ll already have taken classes that would let me graduate with an L&S Data Science major by the end of Fall 2018. Will I be able to declare it and graduate with it in time?

  • For students graduating in Fall 2018 or Spring 2019 only, L&S will waive the residency in the major requirement. Students in this situation are encouraged to consult with a Data Science Advisor and an L&S College Adviser.

What kind of priority (if any) will Data Science majors receive for enrollment in EECS/CS or Statistics classes?

  • We are working with Computer Science and Statistics to determine whether Data Science majors will receive enrollment priority for particular classes. We are also working together to ensure that class sizes are appropriate to meet student demand from Data Science majors, and expect that students will be able to enroll in the classes required for the major before their expected graduation date. The major is constructed to allow students to take other options outside CS and Statistics to meet major requirements as well, and students are encouraged to explore them.

What kind of priority (if any) will Data Science majors receive for enrollment in classes for the domain emphases?

  • We are working with the departments that host many of the popular courses on the Domain Emphasis lists to determine whether Data Science majors will receive enrollment priority for those classes. The domains are designed to draw from several courses so students should have multiple opportunities to complete two upper division courses.

Are there Data Science major and minor advisors? How can I get my questions answered?

  • In Fall 2018, academic advising for the L&S Data Science BA will be handled through our Data Science Advising bCourse. Interested students should complete the Pre-Declaration Survey: (bit.ly/ds-predeclaration) to assess your level of progress toward the Data Science major and gain access to the bCourse, including additional details about scheduling appointments with Data Science advisors.

  • Data Science Peer Advisors will be available to advise students on a drop-in basis in Moffitt Library beginning in late September. Additional details will be posted to this website as soon as they are available.

  • Advising is not yet available for the Data Science minor as it has not yet been approved and is not currently offered. Any updates will be posted on our website as soon as they are available.  

  • For questions about enrollment in classes in existing departments (prerequisites, pathways, etc.), please contact an advisor in the department offering the course.

  • Students are also encouraged to join our online Q&A forum, the Data Science Support Piazza (DATA 001). Many questions may have previously been answered there, and we hope it will continue to be a resource for everyone to consult.

Can I change my Domain Emphisis after I declare?

  • Yes, although students are encouraged to be reasonably sure about their intended DE before declaring.

Can I apply to the major if the Domain Emphasis I want is on the "Still Under Review" list?

  • If you are planning to graduate Fall 2018 and have been pursuing a Domain Emphasis that is not yet approved, please consult with a Data Science Advisor about your options.

  • If you are flexible in which Domain Emphasis you plan to pursue, you can apply to the major with a currently approved Domain Emphasis, and will have the option of changing your DE once additional options are approved.

  • If you are only interested in pursuing a single Domain Emphasis that is not yet approved, we encourage you to wait until your DE is approved before declaring.

Data Science Minor

When will there be a Data Science minor?

  • Faculty are preparing a proposal for a Data Science minor. It will have to go through an approval process before it can be offered. Faculty are working intensively and hope the programs can be approved by Spring 2019.

What are the aims of the Data Science minor?

  • The minor would provide students with Data Science training to complement and integrate with coursework in their own major. Compared to the Data Science major, the minor would allow for a smaller number and broader range of lower division prerequisites.

What can you say about the minor’s lower-division requirements?

  • The current proposal includes one semester of Data 8 (COMPSCI/STAT/INFO C8), three semesters of lower division Math (Math 1A-1B or Math 10A-10B or Math 16A-16B for calculus, Math 54 or EE 16A-16B or possibly other alternatives to be determined for linear algebra), one semester of Computer Science (CS 88 or CS 61A or Engineering 7), and one semester of Probability (Math 10B or Stat 88 or CS 70 or an upper-division probability course).

I'm interested in doing the EdX course, Data 8X, online. Will this satisfy the Data 8 requirement for the minor?

  • No, unfortunately Data 8X doesn't have all the content of Data 8, and does not transfer academic credit.

What can you say about the minor’s upper-division requirements?

  • The current proposal includes one semester of Data 100 (COMPSCI/STAT C100) and a selection of three or four additional upper-division courses. These might be specified to fall in particular areas, possibly including one course in your own major.

What specific upper-division classes will be included in the minor?

  • We can’t say yet for sure. Please check back for more information.

Are there existing classes I can begin taking now?

  • While the minor is being designed and approved, we recommend satisfying university, college, and breadth requirements and taking:

    • Data 8 (COMPSCI/STAT/INFO C8)

    • Data 100 and its prerequisites (currently CS 88 or CS 61A, and Math 54 or EE 16A)

    • A year of calculus (ideally Math 1A-1B for the major, and Math 1A-1B, 10A-10B, or 16A-16B for the minor).

I've advanced beyond Data 8. Are there any other ways to meet the Data 8 requirement for the minor?

  • For a transitional period, we hope to allow a "grandfathered" option:

    • Stat 20, 21, 131A, or 135 and

    • CS 61A or E7

Will the minor be available to students in all Colleges?

  • We hope and expect so. We are working out how. The faculty are working closely with other Colleges to develop solutions for students across our campus.

What if I’m interested in Data Science after taking Data 8, but I don’t want to go all the way to completing the minor?

  • There are many great classes in which you can develop your skills without completing the minor. We encourage you to look at additional course pathways described on this site and at other classes being offered this term.

How will I find out about when the minor is approved?