BSc (Hons) Data Science and Analytics - University of Portsmouth
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BSc (Hons)

Data Science and Analytics

UCAS codeI1G3

Full time3yrs

Placement option1 yr

Big data is big business - from education to aviation, there is high demand for graduates who are skilled in data mining, structures and analysis

Course Overview

Why take this course?

The advanced analysis and interpretation of data offers unprecedented insights into everything from social media engagement to financial forecasting, climate change to cosmology.

Employability is a top attraction for our students, with an increasing number of job openings for data scientists, IT business analysts, data architects and system designers. A qualification in Data Science and Analytics opens up a variety of career options across a wide range of industries.

This course has been developed in collaboration with key business partners to ensure that graduates meet the specific data analysis requirements of industry.

What will I experience?

On this course you can:

  • Master the latest technology and techniques in computer science and statistical analysis associated with extracting valuable information from large data sets.
  • Apply skills to real-life practical problems and real-world datasets based on our internationally recognised research in cosmology, health informatics and cyber security.
  • Develop solutions that use our supercomputer SCIAMA that has 3,702 computer cores and networked clusters.
  • Undertake a salaried industrial placement at the end of their second year.

What opportunities might it lead to?

On graduating, you can take your first steps towards a career in the data science and analytics environment. You could work for multinational companies, small to medium sized enterprises and innovation centres. You will be equipped for careers in the data analytics and deep learning industry.

Here are some careers that you could pursue:

  • Data Scientist
  • Data Architect
  • Data Officer
  • Information Strategist


Azdean Samih, BSc (Hons) Computing Student 2017

Data Warehousing and Mining was one of my favourite units - learning how big data is stored and utilised was deeply interesting and engaging. The staff here are friendly and knowledgeable and my course provided a me with the skills I needed to land my dream job.

Azdean Samih, BSc (Hons) Computing Student 2017

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Structure & Teaching

Year one

In your first year, you will be equipped with the core skills and knowledge you will need as a data analyst.

Core units in this year include:

  • Mathematics for Data Analysis
  • Database Design and Development
  • Programming
  • Web Foundations
  • Business Systems Analysis and Design

Year two

In your second year, you will build on the principles covered in your first year. The aim is to demonstrate the practical and pragmatic use of the techniques that you can apply to large and complex data sets.

Core units in this year include:

  • Experiment Design and Data Analytics
  • Advanced Programming
  • Database Principles
  • Data Structures and Algorithms
  • Statistical Theory and Methods
  • Mathematics Graduates and Employment

Year three*

In your third year you will undertake a substantial project at the same time as studying the key topics for advanced data science and analytics. In your project, you will apply the skills and knowledge from the taught parts of the course to a practical problem within the environment of one of our research areas – cosmology, healthcare, cybersecurity or networking. Alternatively, a local business or other external clients may provide a problem to solve in your project.

Core units in this year include:

  • Data Warehousing and Mining
  • Open Data Innovation
  • Distributed and Parallel Systems
  • Project

Options to choose from in this year currently include:

  • Statistics Methods in Health Research and Social Science
  • Neural Networks and Genetic Algorithms

*This course is also available as a 4-year sandwich (work placement)

We use the best and most current research and professional practice, alongside feedback from our students, to make sure course content is relevant to your future career or further studies.

Therefore, some course content may change over time to reflect changes in the discipline or industry and some optional units may not run every year. If a unit doesn’t run, we’ll let you know as soon as possible and help you choose an alternative unit.


We aim to provide a lively and modern learning environment. You will be taught using a combination of formal lectures, tutorials and lab sessions. You’ll also be required to spend a significant amount of time in self-directed study, which may involve additional software development or research, as appropriate, in the topic that you are currently studying.

The time you spend in teaching activities may depend on the units you select. As a guide, students on this course last year typically spent their time as follows:

  • Year one students: 26% in lectures, seminars and similar learning activities, 74% studying independently and 0% on work placement
  • Year two students: 24% in lectures, seminars and similar learning activities, 76% studying independently and 0% on work placement
  • Year three students: 18% in lectures, seminars and similar learning activities, 82% studying independently and 0% on work placement


You will encounter a range of assessment styles depending on the content and nature of the unit topic. This can include written assignments and presentations, as well as group and individual lab-based assessments. However, the most significant assessment element is your project.

The way you’re assessed may depend on the units you select. As a guide, students on this course last year were typically assessed as follows:

  • Year one students: 33% by written exams, 0% by practical exams and 67% by coursework
  • Year two students: 58% by written exams, 3% by practical exams and 39% by coursework
  • Year three students: 22% by written exams, 0% by practical exams and 78% by coursework

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Facilities & Features

Specialist Software and Equipment

A full range of industry software will be available for you to use in the computer labs, supported by multi-platform network suites offering a variety of operating systems. You’ll have a range of excellent resources at your fingertips including:

  • mobile computing lab to develop Android and iOS apps
  • pervasive computing lab for high performance computing
  • usability lab including state of the art eye tracking equipment
  • Linux and Windows systems
  • forensics lab with industry standard forensic tools

Tutor Centre

A one-stop academic help and support resource for all School of Computing students. Need help understanding your assessments? Want to talk to someone about your project or about that programming problem? This is the place to go.

Maths Café

Drop in any time and get one-to-one help with that tricky maths or stats problem. With handouts on key topics to take away and computer-aided learning packages, we can get the problem solved and help you improve your numeracy skills.

University Library

Modern, comfortable and a great learning environment, our library offers a wealth of information including 400,000 books, DVDs, maps and thousands of online ejournals and newspapers. Many electronic resources are available anywhere, 24/7 and our friendly staff are always on hand to help.

Budgeting for your studies

There are extra costs associated with studying, which you will need to consider when planning your expenditure.

Recommended texts:
If you wish to purchase recommended texts, rather than borrow from the University Library, the average price is £50-£60. You may be studying up to 6 units a year, each with a standard recommended text.

General costs:
We recommend that you budget £75 a year for costs of photocopying, memory sticks, DVDs and CDs, printing charges, binding and specialist printing.

Final year project:
If your final year includes a major project, there could be cost for transport or accommodation related to your research activities. The amount will depend on the project you choose to develop.

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Careers & Opportunities

Career prospects

Career prospects
Where next?

On graduating from this course, you will be prepared to begin a career in the data science and analytics environment. Possible employers include multinational companies, small to medium enterprises and innovation centres. You will be ready to enter a wide variety of careers in the data analytics and deep learning industry.

Work experience

Work experience
Employment boosting opportunities

On this course you have the option to do a year UK or overseas placement with companies such as IBM or smaller organisations. This is a great opportunity to gain real-world perspective and exciting opportunities.

Our team at the Student Placement and Employability Centre (SPEC) ensures you have access to a range of volunteering and work experience opportunities. We also offer support during your year-long industrial placements, and provide support for the different types of application processes.

Here are some examples of the roles our students have secured for their placements:

  • Software Engineer at Xerox
  • Associate Software Engineer at Accenture
  • Analyst at Symantec

Career planning

Career planning

To make sure you take the right steps on your career path, we’re here to give you help, support and advice throughout your study. Even after you’ve graduated, we continue to give you support for up to five years.

Employers tell us that they want graduates to be able to demonstrate certain skills when they come out of university. Our courses take account of this. We make sure we prepare you for employment through work-related learning, projects, placements and working in simulated environments that are designed to prepare you for the working world.

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Apply now or visit us

Apply for 2018 entry

To apply, you'll need this course's UCAS code, which is at the top of this page, and the University of Portsmouth institution code – P80.

Apply now

After you apply, we'll invite you to an Applicant Experience Day where you’ll get to speak to lecturers and meet your future classmates.

Open Days for courses starting in 2019

Come to an Open Day and explore our course facilities, tour the campus and have a look around our halls of residence.

Book your Open Day

Admissions terms and conditions

When you accept an offer to study at the University of Portsmouth, you also agree to our terms and conditions as well as the University’s policies, rules and regulations. You should read and consider these before you apply.

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