To earn an MCDS degree, you must pass courses in the core curriculum, the MCDS seminar, a concentration area and electives. You must also complete a capstone project in which you work on a research project at CMU or on an industry-sponsored project. In total, you will complete 144 eligible units of study, including eight 12-unit courses, two 12-unit seminar courses and one 24-unit capstone course. You must take a certain number of core courses depending on your chosen area of concentration. The remainder of the 12-unit courses with course numbers 600 or greater can be electives chosen from the SCS course catalog. Any additional non-prerequisite units taken beyond the 144 units are also considered electives.
Here's a detailed breakdown of the curriculum.
All students entering the MCDS program are encouraged to complete 11-637 Foundations of Computational Data Science, during the Summer session prior to arriving in Pittsburgh. You must earn a B- or better in this course (12 units). Students who fail to pass the course during Summer must (re-)enroll in the class during Fall semester.
Core Curriculum and Area of Concentration
During your first two semesters in the MCDS program, you will complete a required set of five (5) core courses: Foundations of Computational Data Science, Cloud Computing, Machine Learning, Interactive Data Science and Data Science Seminar. By the end of your first semester, you must choose at least one (1) area of concentration— Systems, Analytics, or Human-Centered Data Science — which governs the additional core courses you will take beyond your first semester. To maximize your chance of success in the program, you should select a concentration area for which you're well-prepared, based on educational background, work experience and the areas described in your Statement of Purpose. You should carefully consider your choice of concentration area before you apply. You are strongly encouraged to review the detailed curriculum requirements for each area of concentration, in order to determine the best fit given your preparation and background.
Detailed Course Requirements
All students complete the Common Core in their first two semesters, and satisfy at least one Area of Concentration in subsequent semesters, according to the requirements listed in the MCDS Course Map.