Data Science

The Postgraduate Diploma in Science in the field of Data Science introduces candidates to the practice of Data Science covering the scientific foundation, programming skills, domain-specific data analytics and ethical and legal frameworks, through online lectures.


The field of data science is an inherently multidisciplinary field, with professionals across the humanities, health sciences, commerce, science and law all requiring an understanding of various mathematical and statistical data analysis techniques and the ability to make use of machine learning tools and computational techniques.

This programme will provide students with these essential skills as well expose them to the ethical and legal considerations that must be considered when working with data. The programme also provides a set of electives that allow students to explore the techniques, data characteristics, constraints and tools in various disciplines.

The programme is designed to support students from all backgrounds, with no Computer Science or university-level Mathematics required.

Career Opportunities

Data Science is increasingly employed by professionals in all fields. Graduates of the programme can find data-orientated roles across multiple sectors including healthcare, finance, law, etc.


The programme requires students to take 4 compulsory courses, and select 5 elective courses for a total of 120 credits. The following courses are available in the programme:

Compulsory courses:

  • Programming for Data Scientists (15 Credits)
  • Mathematical and Statistical Foundations of Data Science (15 Credits)
  • Applied Machine Learning (15 Credits)
  • Data Science in Practice (15 Credits)

Elective Courses:

  • Applications of Machine Learning in Chemistry (12 Credits)
  • Health Analytics (12 Credits)
  • Data Science in Education (12 Credits)
  • Visualising African Societies with Data (12 Credits)
  • Social Media Analysis in and for the Global South (12 Credits)
  • Spatio-temporal Data Analytics (12 Credits)

Entry Requirements

Applicants are required to have a Bachelor’s degree or NQF level 7 qualification.

Applicants must have mathematics equivalent to above 60% in mathematics at matric level.

University Application Process

  • Applications are handled centrally by the Student Enrolment Centre (SEnC). Once your application is complete in terms of requested documentation, your application will be referred to the relevant School for assessment. Click here to see an overview of the Wits applications process.
  • Please apply online. Upload your supporting documents at the time of application, or via the Self Service Portal.
  • Applicants can monitor the progress of their applications via the Self Service Portal.
  • Selections for programmes that have a limited intake but attract a large number of applications may only finalise the application at the end of the application cycle.

Please note that the Entry Requirements are a guide. Meeting these requirements does not guarantee a place. Final selection is made subject to the availability of places, academic results and other entry requirements where applicable.

International students, please check this section.

For more information, contact the Student Call Centre +27 (0)11 717 1888, or log a query at

University Fees and Funding

Click here to see the current average tuition fees. The Fees site also provides information about the payment of fees and closing dates for fees payments. Once you have applied you will be able to access the fees estimator on the student self-service portal.

For information about postgraduate funding opportunities, including the postgraduate merit award, click here. Please also check your School website for bursary opportunities. NRF bursaries: The National Research Foundation (NRF) offers a wide range of opportunities in terms of bursaries and fellowships to students pursuing postgraduate studies. External bursaries portal: The Bursaries South Africa website provides a comprehensive list of bursaries in South Africa.