7 Career Paths for People with a Data Science Degree


If you enjoyed math at high school, you might want to contemplate a career as a data scientist. For many years now, the role of a data scientist has been identified as one of the top jobs in the US. Data scientists employ mathematics, statistics, and computer science in their work with datasets. Unlike data analysts, data scientists concentrate their energies on data preparation, and programming.

They use machine learning, pattern recognition, and deep learning to computerize problem-solving techniques across a range of different industries.

Despite the role of a data scientist being relatively new, this career path has quickly become one of the most popular roles in the tech world. In fact, in 2019, it was believed to be the most promising career path in the U.S.

As you can probably tell by now, data science is a great career path. But what career paths are available to you once you have completed your data science degree? Here are just some of them:

1. Machine Learning Engineer

One of the most popular career paths available to people with a data science degree is a machine learning engineer. On average, people who choose this career path can earn up to $110,739 per annum.
Machine learning engineering is a specialist role that has not been around for very long. These individuals work with a company’s data science team to create programs and algorithms.  Data Scientists try to make sense of the data that’s all around us. Taking a data science course can help you make informed decisions, create beautiful visualizations, and even try to predict future events through Machine Learning. These programs and algorithms then deliver data-driven services and products that enable machines and computers to make decisions, enhance user experience and take action without human operation. Some examples of this are:

– Personalized social media news feeds
– Self-driving cars

In general terms, machine learning engineers come from a physics, mathematics, or statistics background. As this is a specialist role, candidates will need to have completed a Ph.D. or an online masters in data science.

2. Data Engineer

Data engineers are highly paid individuals. Evidence suggests that they can earn up to $129,609 per annum, plus up to $5,000 in bonuses. A data engineer is in control of a business’s data infrastructure. Unlike most careers in data science, their role requires a lot less statistical analysis and a lot more programming and software development skills.

Once a data engineer has gained enough experience, they can move into more senior engineering positions, or they can use the skills they have learned to transition into other software-development specialties. Not only that, but data engineers also have the potential to move into management positions, as the leader of either a data team or an engineering team.

3. Quantitative Analyst

Another highly paid role available to individuals with a data science degree is the role of a quantitative analyst. Otherwise known as “quants”, quantitative analysts use statistical analysis to make predictions and answer questions related to risk and finances.

Anyone wanting to apply for this role will need to have a good understanding of machine learning models and how they can be applied to product markets and solve financial problems. They will also need to have data science programming skills and a good knowledge of statistics.

4. Applications Architect

Research has shown that, on average, applications architects earn $113,757 per annum. The role of an applications architect is to track the behavior of applications used by a company. They will look at how these applications interact with one another and with users. Applications architects are focused on creating the architecture or applications as well as including buildings components like user infrastructure and interface.

5. Statistician

Statisticians can earn up to $76,884 per annum. While this might not be the most highly paid role in data science, if you like working with numbers, then the role of a statistician might be the right choice for you. This role involves collecting, analyzing, and interpreting data in order to spot any trends or relationships which can be used to inform decision-making within a business. As well as this, the role of a statistician usually includes design data collection processes, advising business strategy, and communicating findings to business leaders.

6. Data Analyst

Another brilliant option available to individuals who have completed a data science degree is a role as a data scientist. An average salary for a data scientist is $75,068 per annum. Many of these individuals also earn up to $2500 each year in bonuses.

The role of a data analyst is usually seen as an entry-level position in the data science field, making it one of the best options for people who have just completed their degree. The main role of a data analyst is to look at industry or company data and use it to solve business questions, then convey those answers to other teams in the business. These teams then act upon these findings. For example, a data analyst might look at sales data from a recent advertising campaign to see whether it was effective or not. They will identify any strengths or weaknesses with the campaign and then report the results to the right people so that they can act on their findings.

7. Data Scientist

Data scientists earn on average $121,674 per annum, making it one of the best-paid roles for people with a data science degree. Data scientists play a similar role to data analysts, but they also build machine learning models that can make accurate predictions about what will happen in the future based on historical data.

Compared to data analysts, most data scientists are given much more freedom in their roles. This allows them to pursue their own ideas and experiment to find trends and interesting patterns in the data that management may have overlooked.

The demand for people with a data science degree is extremely high. This is because there is currently a huge shortage of qualified data scientists. If you like the idea of working as a data scientist, and you have completed a degree in data science, why not try out one of the options we have listed above?