Frequently Asked Questions - Data Science


The program has designed an Assessment Tool to provide prospective students with a personalized assessment of how their own profile fits within the program's requirements.


[last updated Jan 7/22]

As of November 1, 2021, the application portal for Fall 2022 is now open for the Master, Graduate Diploma, and Graduate Certificate.

  1. Fall 2022 Deadline to Apply

    • February 1, 2022 11:59PM MST for international applicants.
    • April 15, 2022 11:59 MDT for Canadian/Permanent Residents. 
  2. Winter 2022 Admissions

    While we appreciate the keen interest we continue to see for this opportunity, we are no longer accepting applications for the Winter 2022 semester and this decision is firm.

Since its inception in 2018, the program's main admission cycle is the Fall semester

Please note that there is no part-time intake for Winter 2023, and our Spring/Summer semesters are not presently available for admission.

Fall 2022

Applications will continue to be reviewed as they are received.

International applicants can anticipate notification of their application’s status beginning in January 2022, with our intention being to notify all international applicants of their application’s status no later than May 2022.

Domestic applicants can anticipate notification of their application’s status beginning in February 2022, with our intention being to notify all domestic applicants of their application’s status no later than June 2022.




The application's "To Do" list is automatically populated within the application portal, which can lead to concern over "To Do" lists items being outstanding, but that the program itself does not require.

The following items may populate but are not required by applicants until they have been offered admission:

  • Official Transcripts (see our section on transcripts below for more information)
  • Proof of Canadian citizenship
  • Proof of Permanent Residency
  • Proof of English Language Proficiency
  • References (if you choose not to submit them)

If the Admissions Committee requires additional material from you regarding your admissibility, you will be contacted at the email address supplied in your application.

No. The Data Science and Analytics program's DATA 600-level courses are available exclusively to students who are actively enrolled in the Data Science and Analytics graduate program.

While we appreciate the continued interest we receive from those not actively enrolled in our program, we are not able to accommodate requests to register in, audit, or otherwise attend our courses.

This restriction includes, but is not limited to: undergraduate and graduate students at the University of Calgary or any outside institution, Open Studies students, Visiting Students, alumni or staff. 


[last updated Jan 7/22]


    • All unofficial transcripts and degrees for all post-secondary education to assess prerequisites and a student's GPA 
    • Proof of Prerequisite Completion
    • CV/resume




    Please do not send or try to upload the following documents:

    • GRE or GMAT scores
    • Study Proposals
    • Writing Samples
    • Proof of English Language Proficiency*** 

    ***The only time we ask that proof of English Language Proficiency be provided is if a student does not hold a degree from an institution that instructs in English.

    All students who have completed a degree from an English speaking institution are exempt from requiring to providing this proof.

The program has designed an Assessment Tool to provide prospective students with a personalized assessment of how their own profile fits within the program's requirements. Please click here to complete your personalized assessment.

The program's minimum requirements for admission are:

  • A minimum admission grade point average of 3.00 on a four-point scale or equivalent, calculated on the last 60 units (20 half-course equivalents) completed in your 4-year Bachelor’s degree. 

  • Successful completion of the following undergraduate courses, with at least a “B” grade or equivalent: 

    • one course in computer programming, 

    • one course in statistics or equivalent, and 

    • one course in either calculus or linear algebra or equivalent. 

  • Demonstration of English Language Proficiency (ELP)  

  • Outside North America: find the grade equivalency and minimum GPA requirement for your country here.


  • North American institutions: we are generally seeking a "B" average for a letter score, or 72% as a percentage. 


Please note:

  • Do not attempt to convert your GPA to a 4.0 scale.
  • If you possess any graduate-level degrees, e.g. Master/PhD etc. these are not included as part of your GPA calculation. 

It is unlikely we require this from you: if you hold a Bachelor, Master, or PhD degree from an institution that instructs in English, the proof of English Language Proficiency required is waived, and we ask that no test results be provided.

If your previous post-secondary education was taught in a different language, proof of English Language Proficiency is required. 

See the current Graduate Calendar, Admission > A.1 Qualifications > 2. for full details.

To be acceptable as a prerequisite, a course must meet the following requirements:

  • Accredited - It is from an accredited institution or learning resource.
  • Evaluated - The course is evaluated/graded in some way.
    • “B” grade or equivalent must be achieved.
    • Pass/fail courses can be used, but more detailed evaluation is preferable.
  • Proof - You can produce a transcript or equivalent that documents your completion, and the grade for the course.
  • Duration - Minimum length of 30 hours.
  • Curriculum - The learning outcomes are similar to those listed below.

Learning Outcomes:

Computer Programming:

  • Problem solving, analysis and design of small-scale computational systems, and implementation using a procedural programming language.
  • Python is the language most utilized in our program, however students are able to apply with backgrounds in other languages.


  • Parameter estimation, introduction to the collection of data, elements of probabilistic modelling, basic probability computation techniques, discrete and continuous random variables and distributions, expectation and variance, central limit theorem, single-parameter confidence interval estimation, and exposure to any statistical software package.

Calculus or Linear Algebra:

  • Calculus: single variable calculus, limits, derivatives and integrals of algebraic exponential, logarithmic and trigonometric functions play a central role, applications of differentiation, and fundamental theorem of calculus.
  • Linear Algebra: systems of linear equations, matrix algebra, linear transformations, and determinants.
  • We require students to have successfully completed either a calculus or linear algebra course. It is considered advantageous for a student to have both.

CLICK HERE to view the prerequisite pre-assessment for you to review. If you are comfortable answering the questions listed, this is a good indicator that you are prepared for the material found in our fast-paced, graduate level program. 


[last updated Jan 7/22]

Our program’s current tuition costs are listed here, on the Program Specific Fees page, under Faculty of Science. Students are also assessed General Fees.

Fees for the Fall 2022 Academic Year have not yet been released.

  1. Tuition for Canadian/Permanent Residents

    • Tuition per 3-unit course - $3,060
    • Tuition per 3-unit internship course - $1,530


    Therefore, the tuition totals per program are:

    • Graduate Certificate (12 units) - $12,240
    • Graduate Diploma (24 units) - $24,480
    • Master (30 units + 6 internship units) - $33,660
  2. Tuition for international students

    • Tuition per 3-unit course - $4,080
    • Tuition per 3-unit internship course - $2,040


    Therefore, the tuition totals per program are:

    • Graduate Certificate (12 units) - $16,320
    • Graduate Diploma (24 units) - $32,640
    • Master (30 units + 6 internship units) - $44,880
  1. Full-Time Students

    • 4 months for the Graduate Certificate. 
    • 8 months for the Graduate Diploma.
    • 12 months for the Master Degree.
    • PLEASE NOTE: As our Master program has been designed to be completed in 12 months by a full-time student, we are unable to offer a Master program where it will take 16 months or 2 years to complete if a student is seeking full-time studies. If you are exclusively interested in a program that is longer than 12 months for full-time students you will need to explore options beyond our program.
  2. Part-Time Students

    • At least 8 months for the Graduate Certificate. 
    • At least 12 months for the Graduate Diploma.
    • At least 16 months for the Master Degree.
  3. Maximum Completion Time

    • 3 years for the Graduate Certificate. 
    • 3 years for the Graduate Diploma.
    • 6 years for the Master Degree. 

Federal legislation stipulates that only certified consultants may offer advice about immigration issues. Students who have been accepted to the University of Calgary will have access to International Student Services (ISS) at the University of Calgary, who are certified in this area. See the following websites for more details:

A Graduate Certificate, Diploma, or Master in Data Science and Analytics can work within the Canada-Alberta Job Grant (CAJG) model if the employer and employee meet the criteria as set out in the Canada-Alberta Job Grant Applicant Guide. 

Please note that all DATA 600-level courses, with the exception of the Master's Internship 6-unit course, will be eligible for the CAJG.  

Official Transcripts:

Until an offer of admission is provided, only unofficial transcripts (NOT official) are required for an application to be considered complete and ready for assessment. Please do not request to have your official transcripts sent until you have been offered admission. See our FAQ section "Transcripts" for more details.


English Language Proficiency (ELP) Exams and GPA Calculations:

Please note: if you hold a degree from an institution that instructed in English, the ELP requirement is waived and no test results should be sent.

Full details are available here.


Course Offerings:

Effective December 22, 2021, to align with the University's new directive Winter 2022 courses will begin online, courses temporarily moved online are expected to resume in-person on January 31, 2022. See the FAQ section on "Courses and Scheduling" for more details.




[last updated Dec 23/21] 

We offer a "stackable" or "laddering" program, meaning our separate credentials build upon each other; therefore, if you apply directly to the Master, you complete the components of the Certificate and one of the Diploma specializations.

See our Program Overview PDF for details.



FALL (All Certificate-level courses)

Fall is devoted to our Certificate program's courses DATA 601-604. There are two class schedules offered, running Monday through Thursday. The morning schedule runs 9am - 11:45am, and the evening from 5pm - 7:45pm.

Both daytime and evening options are structured the same: DATA 601 and 602 running concurrently for 6 weeks, followed by DATA 603 and DATA 604 for the remaining 6 weeks of the Fall semester.


WINTER (All Diploma-level courses)

Our Diploma classes (DATA 605-624) run exclusively in the Winter semester. Classes will run Monday through Thursday, in the evening from 5pm - 7:45pm.


SPRING/SUMMER (All Master-level courses)

Spring/Summer is devoted to our Master program.

The Master's Integrated Topics course, DATA 691, runs on what is called a "block week" schedule, where students are in class Monday-Friday, from approximately 9am - 5pm, for two weeks. This is followed by the internship component (DATA 693/5), where the 200-hours associated with the internship will be spread out over the remaining semester based on the student and internship partner.

A student enrolled in all four courses should expect to have 40+ hours of work per week (or ~20 hours of work per week, per course), this includes 11 hours of in-class learning, with the remaining hours committed to assignments, research etc. done independently.

Given the high demand for our program, ultimately preference will be given to those students who can commit to a full-time schedule, however we do work to accommodate our students and have a limited number of alumni and current students who chose to complete the program on a part-time basis.

Part-time students are expected to complete 2 courses a semester, equating to approximately 20 hours per week, with 5.5 hours per week of in-class learning, and the remaining time devoted to assignments, research etc. done independently.

A student's status as "full-time" or "part-time" may also affect:

  • The amount they are assessed for General Fees,
  • Services offered (e.g. part-time students are not eligible for health, dental or a UPASS [used for Calgary Transit]).
  • Student loans.
  • Immigration options.


Effective December 22, 2021, to align with the University's new directive Winter 2022 courses will begin online.

Courses temporarily moved online are expected to resume in-person on January 31, 2022. With the exception of two courses where our instructors require remote accommodation (DATA 605, 623), all DATA 6xx-level classes are scheduled to be taught in-person (DATA 601-624).

Most courses (DATA 601-614) will be held on the Main Campus, with the exception being our Health Data Science and Biostatistics specialization (DATA 621-624), which is held on the Foothills Campus.


FALL 2022

We anticipate that all courses will be held in-person for Fall 2022.

Effective December 22, 2021, to align with the University's new directive Winter 2022 courses will begin online.

Courses temporarily moved online are expected to resume in-person on January 31, 2022. This includes all DATA 6xx-level classes -- DATA 601-624 -- with the exception of two courses where our instructors require remote accommodation (DATA 605, 623).

Please go to the Dataverse Scholar's Portal to see a number of projects that were completed as part of the Fall 2018 certificate program.


[last updated Dec 1/21]

Until an offer of admission is provided, only unofficial transcripts (NOT official) are required for an application to be considered complete and ready for assessment. Please do not request to have your official transcripts sent until you are requested to do so as part of an unofficial offer of admission provided to you via email by the program.

Unofficial transcripts (those uploaded or supplied by the student) will be used to evaluate an application for admission.

  1. My original transcripts aren't in English, what should I do?

    If your original documents are not in English, we require both the original documents or certified true copies of each of your official transcripts and degree certificates in the original language sent directly from the issuing University, and an English translation from the issuing University or a notarized word-for-word English translation of a duplicate copy of that origin.

  2. I'm a UofC graduate, do I need to provide transcripts from the UofC?

    No, we are able to retrieve internal transcripts, and do not require them to be sent to the program.

    Please note that if you have any additional post-secondary education after your degree at the University of Calgary, this will not be on file and therefore need to be submitted.


Until an offer of admission is provided, only unofficial transcripts (NOT official) are required for an application to be considered complete and ready for assessment. 

"Official transcripts" are those received by the University of Calgary directly from the issuing institution. As we are currently working remotely, please utilize the option of submitting your transcripts electronically if possible. Instructions for delivery methods are below.


  • Transcripts must come directly from the issuing institution’s appropriate transcript distribution email address (e.g. Registrar Office, Transcript Office)
  • Indian transcripts and degrees may be requested via The National Academy Depository (NAD)
  • All emails must be sent to
  • Please be aware that documents sent by students or faculty members cannot be accepted as “official”
  • If possible, please request to have your files sent electronically rather than through the post


  • In light of the difficulties international students may encounter obtaining official transcripts, the Faculty of Graduate Studies will accept transcripts as official if they are sent directly from one of the following professional organizations*:
    • Alberta Education
    • Medical Council of Canada Archive
    • International Qualifications Assessment Service (IQAS)
  • Emails must be sent to


  • While the electronic method should always be utilized if possible, we understand that some institutions may not be able to offer this service.
  • Official transcripts are to be sent in a sealed envelope directly to the program by the issuing institution.
  • Mailing Address:

Faculty of Graduate Studies, ES 1010
University of Calgary
2500 University Drive NW
Calgary, AB T2N 1N4

Please note: we do not accept transcripts through WES, or any other method/organization besides those listed above. 


[last updated Nov 5/21]

The intention is for all Masters students to complete a 200-hour professional internship (in industry), but under certain circumstances students may complete a research internship, which will be based on campus, in lieu of one in a professional environment.

The internship will be worth 6 credits. It is the program’s role to help ensure that students have opportunities to apply for. An Internship Coordinator will be facilitating industry connections, and will be assisting in the placement of our students with appropriate industry partners, however the students will be required to apply for the position they are seeking and will need to interview to confirm the placement.

In some instances a student may partner with their employer to complete the professional internship, this would be determined by the Internship Coordinator, who connects with an applicant upon their admission to the program. Previous work experience cannot be utilized towards the 200-hours required.

Applicants to the Master program will be asked to provide two references.

  • References are completed through an online form that is generated as part of your application, not through the submission of independent letters.
  • References can be professional or academic.
  • We strongly recommend you complete this portion of the application as each aspect of the application should be seen as a way to demonstrate an applicant’s aptitude. If you do not wish to include references, because the reference portion cannot be left blank you will still need to complete the fields.

We offer a "Master of Data Science and Analytics", not a Master of Science degree.

Our Master degree is a professional, course-based graduate-level credential.

It has been designed to provide technical expertise at a fast-pace to allow our program’s alumni to either elevate their career, or take it in a new trajectory.

We do not offer a thesis-based program, and our degree will not continue to a PhD-level.

Details are available in our Professional Graduate Internship Program brochure, or you can send an email to

Do you have a question about the program? Get in touch