Frequently Asked Questions
About the Program
Do you have an online program?
Yes, we have courses both online and in-person. You can complete your entire degree online without ever coming to campus. Or, you can complete your entire degree in-person in a traditional college setting. Apply Now
What is the length of the program?
The program follows a one-year timetable. Students are enrolled in two condensed courses simultaneously, for a total of four courses per semester. Coursework must be completed sequentially, as concepts build upon each other. See the Course Schedule page for a list of the courses.
Can I attend part time or apply for the Spring semester?
Given that courses are condensed and must be completed sequentially, a part time option is unavailable. The M.S. in Data Science begins in the Fall semester each year. We do not enroll new students in the Spring or Summer semester.
Can working professionals and/or international students take the online program?
Absolutely. People from most countries and all walks of life are welcome in the online program (and our in-person program too). There is no need to be physically located in Texas or even the United States
How do I apply?
New and existing graduate students should apply at the Texas Tech Graduate School.
What application materials do I need?
You will need a resume, your transcripts, your GRE or GMAT scores, proof of citizenship if US citizen and passport bio, proof of English proficiency and proof of financial support if international. For applicants with five or more years of relevant work experience, the college can waive GRE/GMAT requirements. To request a waiver, please email your resume to Eric Walden.
What scores do I need?
A GRE/GMAT submission is required; however, there is not a designated score requirement for acceptance into the program. That being said, keep in mind that the admissions process is highly competitive. The Rawls College looks for overall exceptional applications, which can include (but is not limited to) above average grades, strong professional development, high test scores and a background in quantitative and technical work.
What sort of background degree or experience do I need?
No defined work experience or background education is required. However, most of our students come from the technology (MIS or computer science), science or engineering fields and most have several years of work experience. Students lacking a technological or quantitative background and/or those who have no work experience will be at a disadvantage in the admission process. It is useful if applicants have basic knowledge of computer programming. For example, R, SQL and Python are used throughout the program's coursework. Additionally, it will be helpful if applicants have completed coursework in calculus, statistics and probability before joining the program.
I have an advanced degree/work experience. Can I waive the test score requirement?
For applicants with five or more years of relevant work experience, the college can waive GRE/GMAT requirements. For more information or to request a waiver, please contact Eric Walden. It is requested that you include an explanation of your situation and details of your work experience as well.
I'm enrolled in a graduate program now and would like to transfer. Can I get course credit for the work I've completed?
Generally, transfer credit towards the M.S. in Data Science is not accepted. However, in some cases, we may be able to accept a course from another university. Decisions will be made on a case-by-case basis.
Will I need to write an admission essay to be admitted to the program?
The Rawls College does not require an essay for admission, but there is an essay requirement on the Graduate School application.
Why should I apply to Texas Tech?
Texas Tech and the Rawls College have world-class faculty teaching in the Data Science program. Take a look at some of our exceptional faculty members: Fred Davis, Ph.D. Dr. Davis is the most cited scientist in the information systems field to date, with over 94,000 Google Scholar citations. To put that in perspective, Stephen Hawking has just over 100,000 citations. Additionally, Dr. Davis' research is continually progressing. With over 50,000 in the last five years (compared to 30,000 by Stephen Hawking), he is leading the information systems field.
Glenn Browne, Ph.D. Glenn Browne is the senior editor at the Journal of the Association of Information Systems. He is a visiting scholar at the University of Mannheim Business School in Germany, as well as the Bordeaux Business School in France. In May 2016, he sat as conference chair for the special interest group at the Systems Analysis and Design Symposium. Browne has won the 2009 Association for Information Systems Best Paper Award, and was awarded one of the top five information systems publications worldwide. At the Rawls College, Browne will serve as your instructor for Decision Theory and Business Analytics. To learn more about faculty at the Rawls College, please visit our website.
What is the cost of attendance?
Exact fees change each semester; however, it is estimated that tuition will cost about $20,000 for in-state residents and $30,000 for out-of-state residents. The cost for the online program is roughly $20,000 regardless of location and residency. Compared to top programs at other institutions, Texas Tech's graduate programs are extremely affordable. Additionally, Lubbock offers a very low cost of living. View estimated costs.
What type of financial support are available?
We do not offer graduate assistantships or teaching assistantships. Occasionally, other organizations on campus will request a student from our area, in which case we will forward that information to the students. Financial aid is available through the university. Learn more about financial aid opportunities provided by Texas Tech.
What is the job placement rate and average salary of graduates?
The average starting salary of our graduates is $90,000 and the 90-day placement rate is 75%. Our graduates find work in large companies like KPMG, Sears, Deloitte Consulting, Hertz, GE, and State Farm, and smaller ones like Atria Senior Living or Adams Land & Cattle.
What career placement services are available?
The Rawls Career Management Center (CMC) offers an amazing range of services to help students find employment. The CMC helps with everything from hosting career fairs to reviewing LinkedIn profiles to hosting etiquette diners and offering mock interviews.