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.

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 (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. It will be important for students pursuing the major to think critically about a chosen pathway, taking into account course prerequisites. If students do not meet stated course prereqs, they will be responsible for obtaining permission from professors to take desired course(s).


  • 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.

Click here to review a full list of courses currently offered -- there will be more to come!

BU Hub and the DS Major

Units Fulfilled by DS Major courses Units Needed Outside of Major
Social Inquiry I (1 unit) Philosophical Inquiry and Life's Meanings (1 unit)
Social Inquiry II (1 unit) Aesthetic Exploration (1 unit)
Quantitative Reasoning I (1 unit) Historical Consciousness (1 unit)
Quantitative Reasoning II (1 unit) Scientific Inquiry I (1 unit)
Ethical Reasoning (1 unit) The Individual in Community (1 unit)
Oral and/or Signed Communication (1 unit) Global Citizenship and Intercultural Literacy (2 units)
Digital/Multimedia Expression (1 unit) First Year Writing Seminar (1 unit)
Critical Thinking (2 units) Writing, Research and Inquiry (1 unit)
Research and Information Literacy (2 units) Writing Intensive Course (2 units)
Teamwork/Collaboration (2 units) Creativity/Innovation (1 unit)
Creativity/Innovation (1 unit)

Check for more information.

Dual Degree

Beginning Fall 2022, CDS will consider a small number of applications for dual degree. Dual degree is an intensive program, so make sure to schedule an appointment with a CDS advisor under Prospective Data Science Majors to initiate the process well in advance. More information on University policies regarding dual degree is available here.

NOTE: Students are not permitted to pursue a Dual Degree in Data Science and Computer Science.

Considering an IUT to CDS? Head over to our Academic Policies & Processes page for more information!