- An exciting and developing area ideal for those with a curious mind
- You'll need excellent maths skills, analytical ability, and attention to detail
- Opportunities to work in both the public and private sector or to work for yourself
This is a developing field which is changing rapidly as technology advances and increasingly large datasets are being compiled and the computing power and software required to analyse them are becoming available. In this role you have the potential to find out information that could make a big difference to your employer or to society so the role can be very rewarding.
- Work with data to find out information that may be useful to the organisation you work for or society as a whole
- Identify problems that need solutions or information to help solve them
- Find sources of data that might provide the information needed
- Analyse data - often using technology-driven techniques or specialist software
- Interpret the data to draw out insights
- Present your findings through reports, data visualisations or presentations
As a data scientist you could work for a company, in a research institute or university, or for a government or public sector organisation.
To become a data scientist you'll need excellent maths and computing skills, an eye for detail, determination to stick with a problem when it becomes difficult, and a curious mind that wants to find out new things and solve problems.
You'll also normally need to have some programming skills.
Choosing maths and technology based subjects will help you get started, then most data scientists will do a degree in a related field like maths, computing, engineering, or economics, and some will then progress on to a specialist master's programme in data science before applying for jobs.
Some employers offer graduate training schemes in this area, and although many will expect you to have a related degree there are some opportunities that are open to those with a degree in any subject.
With skill and experience you could also become a freelancer and work for yourself, or set up your own company.