BS Degree

The Bachelor’s Degree in Data Science is a rigorous program that covers the foundational as well as the applied dimensions of Data Science by focusing on aspects of mathematics, statistics, algorithmics, informatics, and software engineering that are relevant to the manipulation, analysis, and actionable use of complex data assets. To gain a deep appreciation of the human and social contexts, the regulatory and institutional structures, and the ethical and professional practices that shape technical work around computing and data science, the program equips students with the knowledge and skills needed to carry out the full cycle of data-driven investigative inquiry in real-world settings.

A data scientist works with data to solve real-world problems. Through data collection, data transformation, data visualization and analysis, and building predictive models, data scientists can recommend actions for a team to implement. Data scientists can be found in a variety of domains, including healthcare, government, academia, technology, entertainment, etc.

Data scientists must not only have experience with programming, algorithmics and math, they must also have the patience to work on long projects, work through roadblocks, strong communication skills, be team players, and have a strong commitment to ethical and privacy considerations inherent in working with data.

Program Details

The Undergraduate Data Science degree requires completion of a minimum of 128 credits, with at least 64 credits counting towards the major, including 14 four-credit courses covering the foundational, methodological and applied dimensions of the data science, as well as completion of a four-credit capstone. The final four credits may be satisfied through any course that meets CDS requirements.

  • Students must complete all coursework for the major, including the capstone, with a grade of C or higher.
  • Students have the option to pursue one of two tracks of data science electives within the major: Methodology-focused electives or In-The-Field-focused electives.
  • Students with AP credits for calculus, statistics, and/or introductory programming courses have the chance to add more advanced foundational or core courses to their programs of study.
  • Students are encouraged to venture out of CDS to satisfy some of these requirements from cognate units, particularly in the first few years of the DS major

You can learn more about the Data Science BS program here or in the below frequently asked questions.


Major Requirements

This degree requires completion of at least 128 credits, with 64 credits required for the major. This includes 14 four-credit courses covering the foundational, methodological, and applied dimensions of data science. Students enrolled in the BS degree program in Data Science will also pursue coursework in the BU Hub, the University’s general education program.

Mathematical & Computational Foundations:

  • Introduction to Data Science: DS-110 (or substitute)
  • Foundations of DS I: DS-120 (or substitute)
  • Foundations of DS II: DS-121 (or substitute)
  • Foundations of DS III: DS-122 (or substitute)

Data Science Core:

  • Programming: DS-210 (or substitute)
  • Data Mechanics: DS-310 (or substitute)
  • Statistics: MA-213 or MA-214 (or equivalent)
  • Algorithms: DS-320 (or substitute)
  • Machine Learning: DS-340 (or substitute)
  • Ethical & Social Implications: DS-380, DS-457 or DS-482 (or substitute)

Data Science Electives: at least four courses with at least one course in each of the three competencies listed under the Methodology or In-The-Field track.


  • Advanced DS Methods
  • Scalable & Trustworthy DS
  • Applied DS & AI

  • Analytics in the Field
  • Algorithmics in the Field
  • Data Science in the Field

Capstone: at least four credits earned through completion of:

  • A supervised project pursued as part of a practicum course: DS-499, DS-519, DS-539, DS-549
  • A supervised project pursued as part of an internship or directed study course: DS-490

Final 4.00 Credits: can be completed by taking any CDS course, including DS 100.

Curious what courses we are offering this semester? Head to BU’s Bulletin or explore highlighted courses at the below link.

Course List

Intra-University Transfer to CDS

Starting in Fall 2021, undergraduates currently enrolled at BU can transfer from their current school or college to CDS, using the Intra-University Transfer (IUT) process. Applications for IUT are accepted beginning after the first semester of enrollment at BU and no later than the end of the first semester of junior year.

Students who are considering IUT to CDS must apply by November 15th for a Spring 2022 IUT.  We are no longer accepting Fall 2021 IUT applications.
Requirements to IUT include the following:

  • A cumulative GPA of 2.0 or greater 
  • Completion of at least 12 credits per semester for at least one semester at BU
  • A grade of B- or better for any non-CDS courses to be counted towards the foundational, core and/or elective requirements for the major

Interested in learning more? Check out the recording from our first information session here. (Passcode: @S8Fc+x=)

Contact to find out more or use the below form to apply to IUT (please note that we are no longer accepting Fall 2021 IUT applications but you may contact us in regards to Spring 2022.)

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