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MSc Mathematics and Data Science

The MSc combines Mathematics with technology from Big Data and analytics, giving you a practical application in financial, business and medical systems, as well as the tools for studying data networks.

Mathematics and Data Science

Key facts

  • Award Masters / MSc
  • Start date September
  • Duration MSc full-time: 12 months, MSc part-time: 24 months
  • Mode of study Part-time, Full-time, Campus based

The field of Data Science has seen rapid growth in recent years, with vast amounts of data now being generated by major companies and service providers.

At the same time, it’s recognised that there’s a shortage of qualified analysts, both in the UK and globally, to make the most of this data. Crucially, there’s now a shortage of mathematics graduates with the data analysis skills needed to meet the demands of industry.

Our MSc Mathematics and Data Science is one of the first courses to link the two key areas of mathematics and data science, making it uniquely positioned to help you meet this demand.

The course will provide you with a solid foundation in the mathematical analysis of data-driven systems and help you develop your computing skills to apply the techniques you learn on a large scale. You’ll learn the techniques used to approach data using computational analysis and understand the mathematics underpinning these techniques.

  • Top reasons to study with us
  • Course objectives

    The aim of the course is to teach you the techniques for approaching data sets using computational analysis, and to help you understand the mathematics underpinning these techniques.

    On successful completion of the MSc Mathematics and Data Science, you'll be able to:

    • analyse and solve real-world problems using different mathematical approaches
    • expand mathematical methods to approach more complex problems
    • analyse small and large-scale data sets using mathematical and computational approaches
    • apply the research skills and self-learning approaches relevant to data science
    • evaluate different approaches to analysing a problem
    • demonstrate skills in data analytics and machine learning
  • Work placements

    The course features a long summer project, generally in partnership with a company or technology provider.

  • Flexible learning

    If you’re interested in studying a module from this course, the Postgraduate Certificate or the Postgraduate Diploma then please email Graduate Admissions to discuss your course of study.

  • Research

    Our team of academics in the department of Computing Science and Mathematics investigate novel and effective approaches to dynamic and uncertain real-world problems in complex systems and environments. They explore the interdisciplinary connections between computer science, mathematics, life sciences, social sciences and management.

    We work collaboratively with a number of organisations, including The Data Lab (Scotland’s Data Science Innovation Centre, which supports students with funding, networking and routes to employment) and the Scottish Informatics and Computing Science Alliance (SICSA), to ensure our students have the best platform to succeed.

  • Academic requirements

    A minimum of a second class Honours degree, or equivalent, in either a mathematics (joint or single honours) or other numerate subject, e.g. physics. Other degrees will also be taken into account, if it can be shown that some mathematical study took place, e.g. you've taken and passed advanced mathematics modules. Applicants without these formal qualifications but with significant and appropriate work/life experience are encouraged to apply.

  • English language requirements

    If English is not your first language you must have one of the following qualifications as evidence of your English language skills:

    • IELTS: 6.0 with 5.5 minimum in each skill
    • Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE): Grade C or above
    • Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English (CAE): Grade C or above
    • Pearson Test of English (Academic): 54 with 51 in each component
    • IBT TOEFL: 80 with no subtest less than 17

    More information on our English language requirements

  • Pre-sessional English language courses

    If you need to improve your English language skills before you enter this course, our partner INTO University of Stirling offers a range of English language courses. These intensive and flexible courses are designed to improve your English ability for entry to this degree.

    Find out more about our pre-sessional English language courses.

The MSc Mathematics and Data Science is taught by the Division of Computing, Science and Mathematics in the Faculty of Natural Sciences. You'll learn from lectures and practical labs during the first two semesters from September to April. After the spring exams, you'll spend the summer carrying out a dissertation project. The project may be of your own design or as part of a placement or consultancy project for a company, where possible.

The course covers:

  • Statistical analysis techniques for small and large datasets
  • Developing models of real-life systems
  • Mathematical analysis of data networks, e.g. social media networks
  • Analytical and numerical optimisation approaches to real-life systems
  • Manipulating data and scripting in Python
  • Data analytics and machine learning
  • Cluster computing on Hadoop and Spark
  • Relational and NoSQL databases

Modules

The module details given below are subject to change as the University regularly revises and refreshes the curriculum of our taught programmes. The modules outlined below represent those offered in 2017/18 on this course of study.

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Course Details

  • Fees and costs

    Fees shown are per year (fees are different for each course)

      2018/19 2019/20

    Home/EU Students

    Fees shown are for full-time, one-year Masters course*

    If you’re domiciled in Scotland, you may be eligible to apply to the Students Award Agency for Scotland (SAAS) for a loan of up to £10,000 to cover your tuition fees and associated living costs. Students domiciled in the EU can also apply for tuition fee support, although may not be eligible to receive funding to support living costs.

    If you're domiciled in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, you should be eligible to apply for a loan from your regional body.

    English students apply for a loan of up to £10,609 per year as part of the UK Postgraduate Loan Scheme, Welsh students can apply for a non-means tested loan of up to £13,000 from the Welsh Government and Northern Irish students are eligible to apply for support of up to £5,500.

    *Fees for students who apply for a Postgraduate Diploma or Postgraduate Certificate will be paid on a pro-rata basis.

    If the course is taken over two years then the fee will be split evenly over the two years. Fees are not pro-rated for students who enrol on a Masters course and decide to exit with a Postgraduate Diploma - the full fee is charged.

    £6,300 TBC

    Overseas (Non-EU) Students

    Fees shown are for full-time, one-year Masters course. Fees for students who apply for a Postgraduate Diploma or Postgraduate Certificate will be paid on a pro-rata basis.

    If the course is taken over two years then the fee will be split evenly over the two years. Fees are not pro-rated for students who enrol on a Masters course and decide to exit with a Postgraduate Diploma - the full fee is charged.

    £15,250 £15,950

    Please note: You will be liable to pay tuition fees for every year you’re in attendance, and your fees will be held level upon entry. If you need to extend your period of study, you may be liable for an additional fee.

    Datalab Funding 2018

    We are currently applying for Datalab funded places on the Mathematics and Data Science course for students from Scotland and the EU. We will inform you of the status of funding as soon as we can.

  • Scholarships

    If you have the talent, ability and drive to study with us, we want to make sure you make the most of the opportunity – regardless of your financial circumstances. That’s why we offer a wide range of scholarships and funding opportunities available.

    To explore our scholarships and learn more about funding opportunities, use our scholarship finder.

  • Additional costs

    If you choose to attend your graduation ceremony, you will be liable for an additional charge. There is no charge if you wish to graduate in absentia. Learn more about additional fees.

  • Cost of living

    If you’re domiciled in the UK, you can typically apply to your relevant funding body for help with living costs. This usually takes the form of student loans, grants or bursaries, and the amount awarded depends upon your personal circumstances and household income.

    EU and overseas students won’t normally be able to claim living support through SAAS or other UK public funding bodies. You should contact the relevant authority in your country to find out if you’re eligible to receive support. .

    Find out about the cost of living for students at Stirling

  • Payment options

    We aim to be as flexible as possible, and offer a wide range of payment methods - including the option to pay fees by instalments. Learn more about how to pay

  • 98% of our postgraduate leavers are in employment within six months of graduating (Destination of Leavers from Higher Education survey 2015/16)

In their 'The Class of 2017 Job Outlook Report', recruitment agency iCIMS Inc. said: 'Working with Big Data (Data Science) requires experts who have a mathematical and computing background, people who are already in short supply'.

A need has also been identified for Data Science courses across all disciplines that come into contact with mathematics and statistics.

Employment rates among our Data Science students are very high and careers are varied. Graduates are working in banks, the NHS, marketing companies, the oil industry and in government. In addition, our Mathematics graduates often go on to work in the financial sector, logistics, engineering and various government bodies.

This course is one of the first to link two very important subjects - mathematics and data science. Mathematics has always been a key subject, in great demand in both academia and industry. Data Science is a rapidly growing field, where it's predicted there will be a 160% increase in jobs between 2013 and 2020.

  • Employability skills

    Our new MSc Mathematics and Data Science was designed with employability firmly in mind. This has shaped the modules and how the course is assessed.

    Here at Stirling, you'll be offered workshops on CV writing, interview technique and how to secure that dream job. Our relationship with employers and recruiters is strong and they regularly attend events at the University with the intention of recruiting staff.

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