students on computerWhat is Data Science?

Data Science is an inter-disciplinary field of study that deals with capturing, maintaining, processing, and analyzing data, as well as communicating the results of data analysis. The field continues to prove to be one of the most promising and in-demand career paths for skilled professionals

Effective data scientists are able to identify relevant questions, collect data from a multitude of data sources, clean and organize the information, analyze the information, translate results into solution, and communicate the findings in a way that positively affects business decisions. Lander University’s data science program educates and trains you in these skills. After completing our Data Science program, you will be equipped with both the underlying theory and the skills to apply that theory in the real-world. 

Data Science Curriculum

The curriculum of Lander’s Data Science program covers the broad set of skill sets required by data science. The courses in the program are designed to provide instruction and experience in problem solving, data science programming, statistics, big data analysis, data visualization, machine learning and its mathematical theory. The program culminates in a capstone course in which you will apply what you have learned in a real-world scenario to solve problems or make decisions based on data. The courses provide balanced theory and hands-on experience using the latest computer tools. Ambitious students are welcomed for research with faculty members as well.

Lander’s data science program hosts a machine learning server equipped GPUs and a large main memory to host a large number of sessions at the same time. It is currently used in data science courses and research.

Emphases Offered

Since Data Science is an interdisciplinary field, the program offers emphases in three separate subjects -- Business Analytics, Computer Information Systems, and Mathematics. Each emphasis is designed to provide courses to deepen the understanding in each area. If a student is more interested in discovering and applying business intelligence for organizations, Business Analytics emphasis provides a curriculum with business contexts. For students interested in careers as data science developers, Computer Information Systems emphasis should be an excellent choice. The Mathematics emphasis offers an opportunity to study theoretical aspects more in depth and provides the mathematical skills required of many graduate programs.

Why Become a Data Scientist?

For the past six years, Glassdoor has ranked Data Scientist as #3 or better in their Best Jobs in America report. The median base salary is reported as $113,736 with over 29,000 jobs posted. A search of “Data Scientist” listings posted at on March 2, 2020 produced approximately 12,000 job vacancies in the U.S. including over 1,800 in the eight southeastern states. At, the search produced 22,000 results nationally, and over 1,400 jobs in South Carolina and its two neighboring states. The jobs are from diverse industries such as insurance, finance, healthcare, biotechnology, IT, education, retail, sports, just to name a few.

There are diverse career paths for the graduates. The job titles include data scientist, data analyst, data engineer, analytical scientist, business intelligence analyst, machine learning engineer, machine learning scientist, machine learning software engineer, and many more.


Frequently Asked Questions

When can I start the program?
The Data Science major begins in fall 2021. New students can start the program in spring or fall semesters.

How long will it take me to complete the program?
The program is as a traditional four-year undergraduate program.Individual completion time will depend on how much coursework student had completed before joining the program and the course load they carry each semester.

Will I receive credit for courses I have completed at other two- or four years institutions?
Students can transfer up to 64 credit hours from accredited two- or four-year institutions. Depending on the course equivalencies, credit can be used towards Data Science program. For more information, contact Dr. Chris Duncan at



Note: The information below provides convenient links to some of the courses required for this degree; however, it should not be used as a course registration guide. Please refer to the official Lander University Academic Catalog for the most accurate and up-to-date program requirements.

A. Core Skills


  ENGL 101 Writing and Inquiry I 3
  ENGL 102 Writing and Inquiry II 3
  MATH 123 

Calculus and its Applications


B. Humanities and Fine Arts
     (6 hours selected from 2 different disciplines)

C. Behavioral and Social Perspectives
     (6 hours selected from 2 different disciplines)
D. Scientific and Mathematical Reasoning  
  MATH 211 Statistical Methods I 3
    Approved Lab Science 4
E. Founding Documents of the United States  
  HIST 111

United States History to 1877
OR POLS 101 American National Government

F. World Cultures 3
G. LINK 101 1
University Requirement  
  FALS 101 15 FALS-approved events


Total General Education Requirements 35

For approved courses see the General Education section


CIS 120 Fundamentals of Information Systems and
Information Technology
CIS 130 Problem Solving and Programming Methods 4
CIS 230 Computer Programming Principles I 4
CIS 234 Introduction to C/C++ Programming 1
CIS 360 Database Design 3
DSCI 130 Introduction to Data Science 3
DSCI 230 Introduction to Data Science Programming 3
DSCI 231 Data Visualization 3
DSCI 330 Big Data Analysis 3
DSCI 340 Applied Machine Learning 3
DSCI 440 Applied Deep Learning 3
DSCI 499 Data Science Capstone 3


Select 15 hours
CIS 140CIS 231CIS 240CIS 250CIS 320CIS 321CIS 498


MATH 125  Introduction to Discrete Mathematics  3
MATH 208  Applied Linear Algebra 3
MATH 213 Supervised Machine Learning 3
MATH 214 Unsupervised Machine Learning 3
Total Major Program Requirements 64
Additional Electives
(3-9 hours must be 300- or 400-level)
  • Coursework must include at least 30 hours earned in 300 or above level courses, of which 12 hours must be in the major.
  • See the 4-year major guide for recommended order in which to take courses