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Study Data Science at Otago

The science of learning from data.

Data is at the core of modern society. We are producing it, collecting it, wrangling it, analysing it, modelling it, understanding it, visualising it, using it on a scale that seemed impossible not so long ago.

Data Science is fundamentally about how we can learn from data and how we can meaningfully use it to improve our world. Studying Data Science leads to opportunities in fields as diverse as banking and biotechnology, entertainment and education, gaming and government, medicine and manufacturing, retail and research.

Data Science is also a broad area of study. At Otago, the Data Science programme pulls together the best that computer science, information science, and statistics have to offer while stressing application and understanding of the impact of Data Science on society.

Information on this page is about Data Science as a major for undergraduate science degrees, and as an endorsement for the Diploma for Graduates. The University of Otago also offers the Master of Business Data Science, a one-year postgraduate degree with a strong business focus:

Master of Business Data Science (MBusDataSc)

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Why study Data Science?

Data is everywhere and the demand for data scientists is exploding. Data Science is a broad field but it essentially boils down to extracting information from large and complex data sets. Working as a data scientist for an organisation means you will be at the heart of decision-making processes.

Data Science brings together techniques and methods from computer science, information science, and statistics. This means there are opportunities in areas that particularly interest you, whether it is efficient computation, data storage infrastructure, data analysis or applied machine learning. In addition to problem-solving skills that can be applied to many areas, you will gain valuable communication and data visualisation skills.

Career opportunities

There are opportunities for Data Science graduates at all levels of business, industry, government, and science.

Data Science at Otago

What will I learn?

Data Science brings together techniques and methods from computer science, information science, and statistics to extract insight from large and complex data sets, and to communicate this acquired knowledge through effective modelling and visualisation.

You will learn how to acquire, handle and analyse data to solve problems in a wide variety of areas. You will also learn to think critically and ethically about the increasing role Data Science plays in society.

How will I learn?

The programme is delivered using lectures, tutorials, and practical labs. Assessment is a combination of assignments, projects, presentations, and exams. There will be opportunities to work in groups.

Background required

Entry into the BSc (BSc) in Data Science is open to anyone, however taking Digital Technology for NCEA is useful and NCEA Level 3 Mathematics and Statistics is helpful.

Requirements

STAT papers

Paper Code Year Title Points Teaching period
STAT110 2024 Statistical Methods 18 Semester 1, Summer School
STAT115 2024 Introduction to Biostatistics 18 Semester 2
STAT210 2024 Applied Statistics 18 Semester 1
STAT260 2024 Visualisation and Modelling in R 18 Semester 2
STAT270 2024 Probability and Inference 18 Semester 1
STAT310 2024 Statistical Modelling 18 Semester 1
STAT311 2024 Design of Research Studies 18 Semester 1
STAT312 2024 Modelling High Dimensional Data 18 Semester 2
STAT370 2024 Statistical Inference 18 Semester 2
STAT371 2024 Bayesian Data Analysis 18 Semester 2
STAT372 2024 Stochastic Modelling 18 Semester 1
STAT399 2024 Special Topic 18 Not offered in 2024
STAT401 2024 Applied Statistical Methods and Models 20 Semester 1
STAT402 2024 Regression Models for Complex Data 20 Semester 2
STAT403 2024 Case Studies in Statistics 20 Semester 2
STAT404 2024 Advanced Statistical Inference 20 Semester 1
STAT405 2024 Probability and Random Processes 20 Semester 1
STAT423 2024 Bayesian Modelling 20 Semester 2
STAT424 2024 Research Design and Methods 20 Semester 1
STAT425 2024 Statistical Learning 20 Semester 2
STAT435 2024 Data Analysis for Bioinformatics 20 Semester 1
STAT441 2024 Topic in Advanced Statistics 20 Semester 2
STAT442 2024 Topic in Advanced Statistics 20 Not offered in 2024
STAT490 2024 Dissertation 40 Full Year
STAT498 2024 Special Topic 20 Not offered in 2024
STAT499 2024 Special Topic: Clinical Trials 20 Not offered in 2024

INFO papers

Paper Code Year Title Points Teaching period
INFO130 2024 Fundamentals and practice of spreadsheets 18 Semester 1, 1st Non standard period
INFO201 2024 Developing Information Systems 1 18 Semester 1
INFO202 2024 Developing Information Systems 2 18 Semester 2
INFO203 2024 Human-Computer Interaction and User Experience 18 Semester 1
INFO204 2024 Introduction to Data Science 18 Semester 2
INFO250 2024 Special Topic 18 Not offered, expected to be offered in 2026
INFO301 2024 Applied Project 18 Semester 2
INFO302 2024 Information Systems Strategy and Governance 18 Semester 2
INFO303 2024 Enterprise Information Systems Infrastructure 18 Semester 1
INFO304 2024 Advanced Data Science 18 Semester 2
INFO305 2024 Advanced Human-Computer Interaction and Interactive Systems 18 Not offered in 2024
INFO310 2024 Software Project Management 18 Semester 1
INFO350 2024 Topics in Information Science 18 Semester 1, Semester 2
INFO351 2024 Special Topic: Virtual and Augmented Reality 18 Not offered in 2024
INFO352 2024 Special Topic: Pervasive Game Development 18 Semester 1
INFO353 2024 Special Topic 18 Not offered, expected to be offered in 2026
INFO390 2024 Research Topics 18 Not offered, expected to be offered in 2026
INFO407 2024 Agent-based Software Technologies 20 Not offered in 2024
INFO408 2024 Management of Large-Scale Data 20 Semester 2
INFO410 2024 Interactive and Immersive Systems 20 Not offered in 2024
INFO411 2024 Machine Learning and Data Mining 20 Semester 2
INFO420 2024 Statistical Techniques for Data Science 20 Semester 2
INFO424 2024 Adaptive Business Intelligence 20 Semester 1
INFO451 2024 Special Topic 20 Not offered, expected to be offered in 2026
INFO452 2024 Special Topic 20 Not offered, expected to be offered in 2026
INFO470 2024 Advanced Topics in Information Science 20 Semester 1, Semester 2
INFO490 2024 Dissertation 40 Full Year
INFO501 2024 Applied Project 40 1st Non standard period, 2nd Non standard period
INFO580 2024 Research Project 40 1st Non standard period, 2nd Non standard period, 3rd Non standard period

COSC papers

Paper Code Year Title Points Teaching period
COSC201 2024 Algorithms and Data Structures 18 Semester 1
COSC202 2024 Software Development 18 Semester 1
COSC203 2024 Web, Databases, and Networks 18 Semester 2
COSC204 2024 Computer Systems 18 Semester 2
COSC301 2024 Network Management and Security 18 Semester 1
COSC312 2024 Cryptography and Security 18 Semester 2
COSC326 2024 Computational Problem Solving 18 Semester 1
COSC341 2024 Theory of Computing 18 Semester 2
COSC342 2024 Visual Computing: Graphics & Vision 18 Semester 1
COSC343 2024 Artificial Intelligence 18 Semester 2
COSC344 2024 Database Theory and Applications 18 Semester 1
COSC345 2024 Software Engineering 18 Semester 2
COSC349 2024 Cloud Computing Architecture 18 Semester 2
COSC360 2024 Computer Game Design 18 Summer School
COSC385 2024 Research Project 18 Full Year
COSC402 2024 Advanced Computer Networks 20 Semester 2
COSC412 2024 Advanced Cryptography and Security 20 Semester 2
COSC420 2024 Deep Learning 20 Semester 1
COSC431 2024 Information Retrieval 20 Semester 1
COSC440 2024 Advanced Operating Systems 20 Semester 2
COSC444 2024 Advanced Database Technologies 20 Semester 1
COSC450 2024 Computer Vision and Graphics 20 Semester 1
COSC470 2024 Special Topic: Machine Learning 20 Not offered in 2024
COSC471 2024 Approved Special Paper 20 Not offered in 2024
COSC480 2024 Applied Project 40 Full Year, 1st Non standard period
COSC490 2024 Dissertation 40 Full Year, 1st Non standard period

COMP papers

Paper Code Year Title Points Teaching period
COMP101 2024 Foundations of Information Systems 18 Semester 2, Summer School
COMP111 2024 Information and Communications Technology 18 Not offered in 2024
COMP120 2024 Practical Data Science 18 Semester 1, Semester 2
COMP151 2024 Programming for Scientists 18 Semester 1
COMP161 2024 Computer Programming 18 Semester 1, Semester 2, 1st Non standard period
COMP162 2024 Foundations of Computer Science 18 Semester 2, Summer School
COMP210 2024 Information Assurance 18 Semester 2
COMP270 2024 ICT Fundamentals 15 Not offered in 2024
COMP371 2024 ICT Studio 1 15 Not offered in 2024
COMP372 2024 ICT Studio 2 15 Not offered in 2024
COMP373 2024 ICT Studio 3 15 Not offered in 2024
COMP390 2024 ICT Industry Project 30 Not offered in 2024

More information

Contact us

Matthew Parry
Department of Mathematics and Statistics
Tel +64 3 479 7780
Email matthew.parry@otago.ac.nz

Grant Dick
Department of Information Science
Tel +64 3 479 8180
Email grant.dick@otago.ac.nz

Brendan McCane
Department of Computer Science
Tel +64 3 479 8588
Email brendan.mccane@otago.ac.nz

Studying at Otago

This information must be read subject to the statement on our Copyright & Disclaimer page.

Regulations on this page are taken from the 2024 Calendar and supplementary material.

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