This MA programme aims to train postgraduate students in the use of statistical methods to conduct data-driven research in the social sciences and humanities and will create opportunities for students to develop an interdisciplinary perspective on the emerging fields of Data Science.
The curriculum prepares candidates in Social Sciences and Humanities for the growing areas of data science. This contributes to national priorities such as improving service delivery and developing a competitive knowledge economy, and it creates opportunities for graduates as professional researchers in academia and the public and private sectors.
The programme forms part of the DST-funded National e-Science Postgraduate Teaching and Training Platform (NEPTTP). Students will register with their Home Institution but will attend the coursework component at Wits University in Johannesburg, Gauteng, in the first year. On completion of the coursework modules, students will move back to their Home Institutions for their second year of study.
The programme comprises compulsory and elective modules. Cross-disciplinary data-driven projects are offered both within the University and from a wide range of industry partners. A candidate must undertake modules to the value of 180 credits and must successfully complete the following courses:
Compulsory Coursework Modules (Year 1 at Wits University)
- Research Methods and Capstone Project in Data Science (15 credits)
- Data Privacy and Ethics (15 credits)
- Principles of Quantitative Social Research (30 credits)
- Advanced Topics in Quantitative Social Research (30 credits)*
* Alternative MSc courses are available by special permission to students who meet the prerequisites.
Research Report (Year 2 at Home Institution)
- Research Report: Data Science (90 credits)
Graduates of the programme can find data-oriented roles within academic institutions, social and policy research organisations (governmental and non-governmental), and the private sector (technology, healthcare companies and the finance sector).
Competitive DST-CSIR bursaries, covering tuition, accommodation and stipend, are made available by the Department of Science and Technology (DST) to qualifying offer holders with a record of excellent academic achievement. Priority for bursaries will be given to South African Citizens and Permanent Residents.
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