Editorial Note: We earn a commission from partner links on Forbes Advisor. Commissions do not affect our editors’ opinions or evaluations.
As companies have embraced data analytics over the past 20 years, demand for data science professionals has grown drastically. Many people assume that a traditional degree is the only way to get a data scientist job, but a data science bootcamp can be an excellent alternative.
As this article will discuss, data science bootcamps are one of the best ways to learn applicable skills in a short amount of time.
What Is a Data Science Bootcamp?
If you’re considering a data science bootcamp, you should first understand what to expect from one of these programs. Some professionals think bootcamps are similar to college, but that isn’t necessarily the case.
For instance, most data science bootcamps are only three to six months long and focus on project-based learning. Instead of multiple classes on theory and information, bootcamps focus on teaching students in-demand industry knowledge and skills that they can apply to their jobs on day one.
Data science bootcamps also emphasize flexibility. A variety of programs accommodate different learning styles and schedules. For example, bootcamp students might study full or part time. They might prefer either in-person or virtual learning as well. Depending on which option you choose, program length and costs may vary.
Bootcamp graduates can choose among many paths when looking for their first job in the industry. Common roles for data science bootcamp graduates include:
- Data scientist
- Data analyst
- Business analyst
- Data engineer
- Database administrator
Who Should Attend a Data Science Bootcamp?
Bootcamp students come from various backgrounds. Some currently work in the technology industry, and others are looking for their first job in the sector.
For this reason, many data science bootcamp programs teach the fundamentals first before diving into more complex skills. This equips all learners with the same foundational skills needed for success in a bootcamp.
How Much Does a Data Science Bootcamp Cost?
A traditional undergraduate degree in computer science could cost anywhere between $15,000 and $30,000 per year. In contrast, the average cost for a full bootcamp is $14,000.
For potential students who are hesitant about the cost of attending a data science bootcamp, most programs offer financing options to help offset the price. For example, BrainStation allows students to pay for the program in installments instead of a lump sum. BrainStation also offers several scholarship opportunities for qualifying students.
Talk to your prospective bootcamp’s admissions team to see whether you qualify for financial aid or financing offerings.
How to Enroll in a Data Science Bootcamp
Make sure to review several data science bootcamps before settling on one. Each bootcamp offers its own experiences, projects and lessons, so it’s important to choose a program that suits your needs. When considering bootcamp options, consider the following factors:
- Experience of instructors
- Portfolio work opportunities
- Post-graduation support
- Cohort makeup
Each of the above factors affects bootcamp outcomes. Ultimately, instructors are the most crucial part of any bootcamp. When comparing instructors, look for teachers who have worked in the industry and know what skills are necessary to succeed as a data science professional.