Data-Intensive Analysis (MSc) 2021 entry
The MSc in Data-Intensive Analysis is an interdisciplinary course providing students with an understanding of how data is used to gain useful insights in all areas of scientific endeavour. The programme has a substantive statistical component – both theory and practice – allied to computational data science and visualisation.
Postgraduate, leading to a Master of Science (MSc)
- Start date: 6 September 2021
- End date: 30 September 2022
Information about all programmes from previous years of entry can be found in the archive.
One year full time or two years part time
- A good 2.1 Honours undergraduate degree, plus evidence of some previous programming experience.
- If you studied your first degree outside the UK, see the international entry requirements.
- English language proficiency. See English language tests and qualifications.
The qualifications listed are indicative minimum requirements for entry. Some academic Schools will ask applicants to achieve significantly higher marks than the minimum. Obtaining the listed entry requirements will not guarantee you a place, as the University considers all aspects of every application including, where applicable, the writing sample, personal statement, and supporting documents.
Wednesday 11 August 2021. Applicants should apply as early as possible to be eligible for certain scholarships and for international visa purposes. To maintain staff-student ratios, the University reserves the right to stop accepting applications once the programme is full.
- personal statement (optional)
- two original signed academic references
- academic transcripts and degree certificates
- evidence of English language proficiency (required if English is not your first language).
For more guidance, see supporting documents and references for postgraduate taught programmes.
Discover the University of St Andrews
Watch current students and staff discuss the teaching facilities, research opportunities and student life at Scotland's first university.
The modules in this programme have varying methods of delivery and assessment. For more details about each module, including weekly contact hours, teaching methods and assessment, please see the latest module catalogue, which is for the 2020-2021 academic year; some elements may be subject to change for 2021 entry.
Students take four compulsory modules.
- Introductory Data Analysis: covers essential statistical concepts and analysis methods relevant for commercial analysis.
- Advanced Data Analysis: covers modern modelling methods for situations where the data fails to meet the assumptions of common statistical models and simple remedies do not suffice.
- Knowledge Discovery and Datamining: covers many of the methods found under the banner of "Datamining", building from a theoretical perspective but ultimately teaching practical application.
- Applied Statistical Modelling using GLMs: covers the main aspects of linear models and generalized linear models, including model specification, various options for model selection, model assessment and tools for diagnosing model faults.
Students choose four of the following optional modules.
- Computing in Statistics: teaches computer programming skills, including principles of good programming practice, with an emphasis on statistical computing.
- Software for Data Analysis: covers the practical computing aspects of statistical data analysis focusing on widely used packages, including data-wrangling and visualisation.
- Data-Intensive Systems: presents the programming paradigms, algorithmic techniques and design principles for large-scale distributed systems, such as those utlised by companies such as Google, Amazon and Facebook.
- Information Visualisation and Visual Analytics: explores how to utilise visual representations to make information accessible for exploration and analysis.
- Masters Programming Projects: reinforces key programming skills gained during the first programming module of the programme and offers increasing depth and scope for creativity.
- Object-Orientated Modelling, Design and Programming: introduces and revised object-oriented modelling, design and implementation to reinforce study in other modules.
- Programming Principles and Practice: introduces computational thinking and problem-solving skills to students who have no or little previous programming experience.
Optional modules are subject to change each year and require a minimum number of participants to be offered; some may only allow limited numbers of students (see the University's position on curriculum development).
During the second semester, students work with staff to define and agree upon a topic for the extended project, which they will work on during the final three months of the course, and which culminates in a 15,000-word dissertation. Dissertation projects may be group-based or completed individually (students are assessed individually in either case).
The dissertation typically comprises: a review of related work; the extension of existing or the development of new ideas; software implementation and testing; analysis and evaluation. Students are required to give a presentation of their work in addition to the written dissertation.
Each project is supervised by one or two members of staff, typically through regular meetings and reviews of software and dissertation drafts. Supervisors and topics may be from either of the schools of Computer Science or Mathematics and Statistics and many are in collaboration with companies or other external bodies.
If students choose not to complete the dissertation requirement for the MSc, there is an exit award available that allows suitably qualified candidates to receive a Postgraduate Diploma instead, finishing the course at the end of the second semester of study.
The modules listed here are indicative, and there is no guarantee they will run for 2021 entry. Take a look at the most up-to-date modules in the module catalogue.