Short course

Data science short courses

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The details
All levels of study

Impatient to future-proof your career?

More and more companies are realising the importance of data science. So much so that demand for data engineers has tripled over recent years. Data science is the field of study which blends programming skills, domain expertise, mathematics, and statistics to extract meaningful insights from big data.

Having these skills of using raw and unstructured data to determine trends, patterns and correlations in ways that can help companies spot opportunities and negotiate risks are helping our graduates become more attractive in a booming job market. That is why we have created our data science short courses to help our graduates hone these sought after skills and increase their career and employability pathways.

Run through Moodle, our Virtual Learning Environment; the classes will be split into two separate sections; the first hour will be a live class taught by one of our Data Science Professors, followed by 3 hours of academic support, where you can ask the professor and the Graduate Learning Assistants questions that you may have about the content of the lecture. Don't worry if you can't attend the live session though, as it will all be recorded and you can watch it at your leisure.

You are welcome to attend all 3 courses, however they have been developed to cater to different audiences depending upon your existing knowledge of data science. So you could do R and Python, but they may be too advanced for beginners.

This is a non-credit bearing module, with no final examination, and participation is entirely voluntary. However please do let your instructor know should you wish to stop attending, so that we can record how many students complete the course.

Taking part in the courses will form part of the Big Essex Award and Chart my Path which you can sign up to and which will form part of your final degree transcript.

These courses will be available next year so you can take the course again if you need to.  As this is our first year please send feedback about what did and didn’t work for you. 

“We need students who have knowledge in a wide range of social science and humanities topics, but who can also work with data science and analytics to understand patterns and trends. There is a real disconnect between people who can communicate well and people that are good at data science. Our short courses aim to bridge that gap.”

What the courses cover


What will you learn? 

This course will help you build programming skills in Python programming language. Python is the programming language choice of data scientists and analytics professionals. It is a very powerful programming language that helps programmers and data scientists bring speed, versatility and efficiency to data science.

During this course you will:

  • learn how to use Pandas for data analysis
  • gain experience of Numpy for processing numerical data
  • practice plotting and visualisation
  • learn the foundations of the object-oriented programming in Python.

Course dates and classes

  • We will announce the course dates, lecture times and online lab times very soon. Please stay tuned.

What will you learn?

This course will help you build programming skills in R programming language. R is an important programming language used by data scientists and those that work in data analytics, and is particularly used by social scientists.

During this course you will learn

  • how to use R and R Studio
  • how to start coding in R
  • what R syntax is
  • data types and data structures
  • how to read data into R and inspect data structures
  • how to plot in R and other forms of data visualization

You will also be introduced to machine learning and see examples from real world datasets.

Course dates and classes

  • We will announce the course dates, lecture times and online lab times very soon. Please stay tuned.

Data Science for beginners

What will you learn?

This five-day workshop is designed to prepare students for future courses at the University of Essex when they have no previous programming experience in R.

The instructor will teach you:

  • how to run R in R Studio (an R programming environment)
  • how to work with basic objects and run operations
  • how to create/merge/subset a data frame.

We will also cover some basic data visualization techniques. The workshop has two components daily. It will start with a programming lecture session and then a practice session where students’ questions can be answered interactively and in real-time.

Course dates and classes

  • We will announce the course dates, lecture times and online lab times very soon. Please stay tuned.


How to sign up

If you are either a current Essex student, a new student who will be starting your degree in October 2023 or January 2024, a member of staff or alumnus, please come back later for ways of sign up. 

“Essex has a really diverse student body and has some of the best academics in data science in Europe. We would like to be known as the number one institution in Europe for data science training, particularly for non-computer scientists, and to reach students from around the world.”
Professor Natasha Lindstaedt Deputy Dean of Education for Social Sciences

Our vision

The boot camp is part of the University’s plan to create a Data Science and Global South Centre which will merge topics that are often neglected in data science. The hope is for the Centre to bring the humanities, social sciences and computer science closer together, offering collaborations, education and training. This will extend to include Essex’s educational partners in the Global South – in Latin America, Asia, Africa, and Oceania.

The University is home to the Institute for Analytics and Data Science – a centre for excellence that connects scholars, businesses, institutions and authorities to work on their data needs. The Essex data analytics community includes Professor Maria Fasli, Executive Dean for the Faculty of Science and Health, who is UNESCO Chair in Analytics and Data Science.

Essex is committed to putting people at the heart of data science and is part of the unique Essex Centre for Data Analytics partnership with Essex County Council and Essex Police – a programme designed to share data ethically and combine it with the experience of people and communities across Essex, to create powerful insight and inform policy decisions.


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