FAQs

This page provides updated FAQs about the Data Science major and minor. It is current as of April 2018. The Letters & Science Data Science major (B.A.) has been fully approved and will available for students starting in the 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 proposed Data Science major and minor and other aspects of the Data Science program, please check out: piazza.com/berkeley/other/data001.

 

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 will be available for students to declare beginning in Fall 2018.
  • Until the Data Science major becomes available, students interested in the new major should continue taking classes that satisfy their existing or intended major, particularly where they overlap with the classes detailed on the major requirements page. Only if a student has additional space in their course schedule should they add new courses specific to the Data Science major.
  • Faculty are also preparing a proposal for the College of Engineering Data Science major. Faculty are aiming to make the major requirements (other than College requirements) as similar as possible to the L&S major. The Engineering major proposal will need to proceed through a similar approval process to that for the L&S major.
  • The FAQs on this website will be updated with current information as it is available.

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

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

    • Stat 20, 21, or 135 and

    • CS 61A or E7

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?

  • We suggest you continue taking classes that satisfy your existing or intended major, particularly where they overlap with the classes detailed on our major requirements pages.

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. Students will need to meet the standard expectations to declare an L&S major. 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?

  • For a transitional period, we hope to offer a mechanism for students to ask for consideration of courses completed with a grade of “Passed” in order to accommodate students who took major requirements P/NP prior to the approval of the major. Details about this process are still TBD.

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?

  • In these transitional semesters, if the timing for the L&S major approval allows, the faculty are hopeful that L&S will approve allowing students to add the Data Science major in the final semester before graduation. If approved, this will be a transitional strategy only.

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 hoping to expand class sizes, and many students pursuing the major will be able to enroll; they may need to be flexible and patient. The major is constructed to allow students to take other options outside CS and Statistics to meet major requirements, and students should expect 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?

  • We are currently building up our advising team, but don't yet have the capacity for individual advising.
  • For questions about classes in existing departments (prerequisites, pathways, etc.), ask those departments' advisors. For questions about the Data Science program, please review these FAQs and ask your regular advisor for now.
  • While we build up our advising program and processes, you can direct your questions to our online Q&A forum, the Data Science Support Piazza(link is external) (DATA 001). Many questions may have previously been answered there, and we hope it will continue to be a resource for everyone to consult until our advisors can take on individual advising appointments.

 

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 in Spring 2018.

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?