Best Data Science Degree Programs in Montana: Your Complete Guide

In today’s data-driven world, Montana is becoming a hub for data science education and career opportunities. With a growing number of universities offering data science degree programs in Montana, the state is fostering a skilled workforce ready to tackle the challenges of the digital age. If you’re considering pursuing a career in this exciting field, Montana presents a wealth of resources, networking opportunities, and a thriving job market. It’s time to uncover the potential of studying data science in Montana!

Key Takeaways

  • Montana universities offer comprehensive data science programs, with hands-on experience and professional development opportunities.

  • Data science has become a critical part of Montana’s economy, with top industries including Healthcare, Technology, Finance and Government.

  • Various scholarships are available for students pursuing data science degrees in the state along with career opportunities offering an average salary of $138k per year.

Data Science Education in Montana: An Overview

Over the years, data science education in Montana has seen significant development. Several universities offer programs at both undergraduate and graduate levels, combining mathematics, computer science, statistics, and business analytics to provide a comprehensive education in data science. Montana Tech, the University of Montana, and Montana State University are some of the key institutions offering data science programs. These programs not only equip students with the necessary skills but also provide them with real-world experience through internships and research opportunities in data science at Montana.

The importance of data science in Montana’s economy cannot be overstated. The state’s university system has introduced new degree options in software engineering, data science, and algorithm design, demonstrating the rising demand for professionals in this field.

Data science significantly contributes to the expansion of Montana’s tech companies by analyzing large data sets to help companies optimize operations, make strategic decisions, and identify new growth opportunities.

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Montana Universities Offering Data Science Programs

Several universities in Montana offer data science programs at various levels. At the undergraduate level, the University of Montana and Montana Tech provide data science programs, allowing students to gain hands-on experience through data science projects, research, and internships.

The Montana University System, which includes the University of Montana and Montana State University, provides graduate data science programs for those seeking advanced studies. These programs include various events, workshops, and conferences to help develop students’ skills and establish professional networks.

The Importance of Data Science in Montana’s Economy

Data science has become an integral part of Montana’s economy in recent years. The demand for data scientists in the state has seen a positive evolution, with an estimated growth of 22 percent in the coming decade. Key industries such as:

  • healthcare

  • technology

  • finance

  • government

are increasingly reliant on data scientists with strong statistical and computer science skills.

Cities like Billings, Bozeman, and Missoula in Montana, known for their favorable business environments, have significantly contributed to this growth by attracting new businesses and promoting the growth of existing ones.

Undergraduate Data Science Programs in Montana

Montana Tech and Carroll College offer undergraduate data science programs designed to prepare students for rewarding careers in the field. These programs aim to furnish students with essential knowledge and skills to succeed in the continuously expanding field of data science. With hands-on experience through:

  • Course projects

  • Research

  • Competitions

  • Data science internships

Students have the opportunity to develop a strong foundation as a data science major.

Montana Tech B.S. in Data Science

Montana Tech stands out as the only university in Montana that offers a four-year B.S. program in Data Science. The program includes the following courses:

  • Introductory courses in statistics and computer science

  • Courses on database design, statistics for science, and multivariable calculus

  • Data mining and probability

  • Software engineering

  • Coursework in artificial intelligence and machine learning

These courses prepare students for the job market in the field of data science.

Montana Tech provides students with various resources such as high-performance computing, 3D data visualization systems, and a diverse platform for data science majors. Additionally, students can gain hands-on experience through internships, both locally and nationally, with organizations such as White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico, Micron Technology in Boise, Idaho, and Figure in San Francisco. Montana Tech’s faculty provides ample opportunities for one-on-one interactions, fostering a supportive learning environment.

Carroll College B.S. in Data Science

Carroll College’s B.S. in Data Science program emphasizes the integration of the following courses:

  • Mathematics

  • Computer Science

  • Data

  • Philosophy

  • Physics

Students in the program can gain practical experience through machine learning, data science, and forecasting internships. The program’s interdisciplinary approach prepares students for a broad range of career opportunities in the ever-growing field of data science.

With a strong focus on hands-on learning, students at Carroll College can expect to graduate with the skills necessary to excel in the competitive job market.

Graduate Data Science Programs in Montana

For those seeking to further their education in data science, the following programs are available in Montana:

  • University of Montana: On-campus graduate data science programs

  • Montana State University: On-campus graduate data science programs

  • Montana Tech: Health Care Informatics graduate certificate

These programs cater to a variety of interests and career paths, allowing students to refine their skills and specialize in areas of particular interest.

University of Montana M.S. in Business Analytics

The University of Montana offers a Master of Business Analytics program designed to equip students with the skills necessary to tackle industry challenges. The program provides students with a strong foundation in data analytics and business intelligence. Coursework covers a range of topics, including data mining, machine learning, and data visualization.

Students enrolled in the M.S. in Business Analytics program can gain hands-on experience through internships and faculty-guided consulting projects, which provide real-world exposure to data science applications. Networking opportunities are also available through data science events, workshops, and conferences, allowing students to connect with professionals in the field and enhance their skills.

Montana State University M.S. in Data Science

Montana State University offers an M.S. in Data Science program that includes:

  • Practical applications

  • A variety of course options

  • 30 credits, which can be satisfied by taking 10 3-credit courses

  • Courses from Computer Science, Mathematics, and Statistics departments

This interdisciplinary approach allows students to tailor their coursework to their specific interests and career goals, equipping them with the skills necessary to excel in the rapidly evolving field of data science.

Online Data Science Degree Options for Montana Students

Beyond on-campus programs, Montana students can also opt for online data science degree programs that offer flexibility and accessibility, enabling them to continue their education unfettered by the limitations of traditional classroom environments.

Online programs can be especially advantageous for working professionals or individuals with family obligations, as they allow learning at a self-determined pace from any location.

Available Online Data Science Programs

Montana students can choose from a variety of online data science programs, such as those offered by UC Berkeley and the University of Wisconsin. These programs provide students with the opportunity to study data science from the comfort of their own homes, without the need to relocate or disrupt their daily routines.

With access to a wide range of courses and resources, online data science programs can be just as comprehensive and rewarding as their on-campus counterparts.

Benefits of Online Data Science Degrees

Online data science degrees offer numerous benefits, including flexibility, cost savings, and access to a wider range of courses and programs. The convenience of online learning enables students to study at their own pace, while the ability to access course materials from any location with an internet connection makes higher education more accessible to a broader range of individuals.

Moreover, online courses can extend learning opportunities to students with disabilities, thus broadening inclusivity in data science education.

Certificate Programs and Bootcamps in Data Science

Montana offers certificate programs and bootcamps for individuals seeking to rapidly acquire data science skills. These programs are designed to provide focused, intensive training in specific areas of data science, allowing students to rapidly develop their skills and transition into new careers or enhance their existing expertise.

University of Montana Big Data Analytics Certificate

The University of Montana offers a Big Data Analytics Certificate program, which provides students with a strong foundation in data analysis and project management. The program includes two mandatory courses, followed by a selection of electives that students can choose to align with their professional goals.

Students can gain hands-on experience through faculty-guided consulting projects, giving them valuable real-world exposure to data science applications.

Data Science Bootcamps in Montana

Data science bootcamps in Montana offer students an accelerated learning experience, typically ranging from 12 to 28 weeks in duration. These bootcamps focus on developing skills such as:

  • Data science programming

  • Cleaning and analyzing data

  • Data modeling

  • Data visualization

  • Research presentation

Upon completion, students are equipped with the practical skills and knowledge required for a successful career in data science.

Scholarships and Financial Aid for Data Science Students in Montana

Pursuing a data science degree can be a significant financial investment. However, Montana offers various scholarships and financial aid opportunities to help offset the costs of tuition and related expenses. These scholarships are designed to support promising students in their pursuit of data science education and enable them to focus on their studies without the burden of financial stress.

University-Specific Scholarships

Several universities in Montana offer university-specific scholarships for data science students, including:

  • University of Montana’s College of Business

  • Montana State University

  • Montana Tech

  • Carroll College

These scholarships are designed to support promising students with tuition costs, allowing them to focus on their studies and excel in their chosen field.

General STEM Scholarships

In addition to university-specific scholarships, Montana data science students may be eligible for general STEM scholarships, such as:

  • Montana’s STEM/Healthcare Scholarship

  • Montana’s STEM Scholarship Program

  • Reach Higher Montana Scholarship

  • Big Sky STEM Scholarship

These scholarships are designed to support students pursuing degrees in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields, including data science.

Career Opportunities and Job Market for Data Scientists in Montana

The need for data scientists in Montana is increasing, as more industries rely on data-driven insights for strategic decision-making and operational optimization. As a result, data scientists in Montana can expect a thriving job market with numerous career opportunities across various sectors.

Graduates with a solid foundation in data science can pursue fulfilling careers that make a substantial impact on their organizations and communities.

Top Industries and Employers for Data Scientists in Montana

The primary employers of data scientists in Montana are:

  • Healthcare

  • Technology

  • Finance

  • Government

Companies such as DataSmart Solutions, Diamond B Technology Solutions, and Agile Data Solutions specialize in data science and often recruit professionals with expertise in this field.

Data scientists can also find exciting opportunities in data science jobs at research institutions, where they serve as data analysts, statistical consultants, and researchers, working on cutting-edge projects that have the potential to transform industries and improve lives.

Salary Expectations for Data Scientists in Montana

The salary expectations for data scientists in Montana can vary depending on factors such as:

  • Experience level

  • Educational background

  • Industry

  • Geographical location

According to Indeed, the average salary for data scientists in Montana is currently $138,735 per year, while ZipRecruiter reports an average salary of $125,052 annually. These figures may differ from the national average, but they demonstrate the potential for rewarding and well-compensated careers in the field of data science in Montana.

Networking and Professional Development for Data Scientists in Montana

Networking and professional development significantly contribute to the success of data scientists in Montana. By attending conferences, events, and meetups, data scientists can connect with industry professionals, exchange ideas, and stay up to date with the latest trends and advancements in data science.

Furthermore, networking can help data scientists build a strong professional reputation, opening up new opportunities and collaborations throughout their careers.

Data Science Conferences and Events in Montana

The Montana Data Use Culture Conference, a significant data science event in Helena, convenes leaders, researchers, and students to discuss how educational data can benefit the state. This conference provides an excellent platform for data science professionals to network, share their knowledge, and learn about the latest developments in the field.

Data Science Meetups and Online Communities

Montana is home to several data science meetups, such as Montana Programmers and Bozeman Data Science Meetup, where professionals can connect, learn, and share their experiences. Additionally, online communities like the Montana State University community dedicated to data science research and education provide virtual platforms for networking and collaboration among data scientists in Montana.

These meetups and online communities provide a platform for professionals to maintain connections, exchange ideas, and support each other in their quest for excellence in data science.


Montana offers a wealth of opportunities for individuals interested in pursuing a career in data science. With an array of undergraduate and graduate programs, online degree options, certificate programs, and bootcamps, students can find the resources and support they need to excel in this rapidly evolving field. Networking and professional development opportunities, such as conferences, events, and meetups, allow data scientists to stay connected and up to date with the latest trends and advancements. As the demand for data scientists in Montana continues to grow, there has never been a better time to embark on a rewarding career in this exciting field.

Frequently Asked Questions

Which degree is best for data scientist?

Given the variety of degrees that can be a pathway to becoming a data scientist, a Bachelor’s in Data Science or Computer Science is usually recommended to those interested in pursuing this career. Mathematics, Statistics, Information Technology, Business, Engineering and Physics are also viable options.

Which is best program for data science?

TensorFlow is the most widely accepted open-source data science tool and is popular because of its Machine Learning and Deep Learning library, making it the ideal program for data science professionals. Its features make it a great choice for data analysis, ML algorithms and model building, as well as visualization.

Is a BS in data science worth it?

A data science degree can help you secure a high-paying job, so for many people, it is a worthwhile investment. However, there are other, more affordable alternatives.

What universities in Montana offer data science programs?

University of Montana, Montana State University, Montana Tech and Carroll College all offer data science programs, ranging from undergraduate to graduate levels.

Are there any online data science degree options available for students in Montana?

Yes, there are various online data science degree programs available to students in Montana, including those provided by UC Berkeley and the University of Wisconsin.

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