Can I count classes I have already taken?

Should the experiential/practicum project be outside of my own research?

What is the difference between the MIDAS Data Science Certificate and the School of Information’s Information Analysis and Retrieval track?

Q: I have already taken several courses listed in the DS Certificate Program. Can I count these and go through the program quickly?

A:  Yes, if you already have some of the courses taken (remember you can only double count 1 course with your core grad program) you may be able to quickly satisfy the remaining DS Certificate requirements. Register for the Program and go through the complete check-list to ensure you do receive your certificate upon graduation.

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Q: I noticed that part of the program involves a data science related experience/project. What does this project involve?

A: This is either an internship with an external mentor/organization or a research project with a UMich faculty mentor – must involve substantial data-handling and be equivalent to 3 credit semester course (~140 hrs of work).

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Q: Regarding the experiential/practicum Data Science project, should the project be outside of my own research or can it be part of my own research?

A: The project scope and deliverables are determined on a case-by-case basis (in discussion with MIDAS DS Program Chair). The project must have a significant “data science” (modeling, analytics, visualization) aspect to it with a clearly defined end-product (e.g., software, paper, report, app, service, learning module, DB, platform, infrastructure, etc.)

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Q: Since I have yet to take any courses in data science and have not come up with a project, is it possible to decide about the specific practicum later on?

A: Absolutely, most students determine their hands-on experiential requirements while they are enrolled in the Program.

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Q: What should I write on the application in the “Data Science related Practicum Experience” section now, if I have no idea yet?

A: Include your current preliminary plan, what you would like to do for the practicum. Specifics can be determined later while enrolled in the program and after reviewing the MIDAS opportunities (

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Q: Will the lack of prior data science experiences (aside from my personal endeavor in machine learning over the summer) influence the success of the application?

A: No, prior experience is not a criterion for admission into the graduate Data Science certificate program. Motivation, hard work, and self-drive are more important.

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Q: What are the difference between the MIDAS Graduate Certificate in Data Science and the School of Information’s Information Analysis & Retrieval track?

A: The School of Information’s Information Analysis & Retrieval program/track ( is mostly geared for business analytics. The Data Science Certificate program is a bit more general modeling, technology and applications oriented. You may enroll in both, however, you still can only “double-count” one course at most. See Rackham Degree and Certificate Program Rules.

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