Bachelor of Data Science and Decisions

NEW for 2017, UNSW is excited to offer the Bachelor of Data Science and Decisions program.

This unique multidisciplinary program will equip students with skills in mathematical methods, statistics, computing, business decisions, and communication.

Students undertaking the Bachelor of Data Science and Decisions (program 3959) will benefit from the expertise of educators across three different Schools at UNSW: Mathematics and Statistics; Computer Science and Engineering; and the UNSW Business School.

The Bachelor of Data Science and Decisions will train graduates to meet the growing demand for Data Scientists and Analysts in the Sydney region, nationally and internationally.

Data Science – The job of the 21st century

We live in an age where we have unprecedented access to knowledge and data. The increasing need for people who can interpret and understand data means that Data Scientists and Analysts are in very high demand across a range of industries. Abundant opportunities across a variety of fields make data scientist not just a high-growth job, but also one of the most lucrative.

The Data Science and Decisions program will enable graduates to work in the growing Data Science industry with specialist skills in mathematics, computer science, or business, and a broad knowledge across these three different areas.

With the Bachelor of Data Science and Decisions, you can harness yourself with the skills to meet this soaring demand, and set yourself up for a truly global job with amazing prospects for growth into the future!


Data Science: An emerging career path for women

More women are being enticed into the exciting field of data science, where networking, building relationships,Women in data science strategic thinking, oversight and attention to detail are essential. Data Scientists are required to look at the big picture, be guided by what they see, and share the vision.

In recent years, many women have taken up prominent positions within the field, including Google’s Head of Research, Corinna Cortes. Other renowned females in the area include President and Co-Founder of Coursera, Daphne Koller; Founder of Fast Forward Labs, Hilary Mason; and Founder of Analytical Solution, Carla Gentry.

It is predicted that data science will continue to be a fast emerging and enriching career path for women into the future.

Structure of the degree

The Bachelor of Data Science and Decisions (3959) is a three-year program, comprising a central core course requirement and featuring three separate streams of study: Quantitative Data Science, Computational Data Science, and Business Data Science. The Guaranteed Entry ATAR for this program is 94. UAC code: 429150.

The Bachelor of Data Science and Decisions comprises:

Core courses: 72 Units of Credit (UOC) A major: 48 UOC
Free electives: 12 UOC General Education: 12 UOC


See below for core courses and courses by stream. 


MATHE1 Quantitative Data Science

COMPZ1 Computational Data Science ECONL1 Business Data Science
Level 1 courses

COMP1511 Introduction to Programming

COMP2521 Data Structures & Algorithms

DATA1001 Introduction to Data Science & Decisions

ECON1101 Microeconomics 1

One of:
-MATH1131 Mathematics 1A
-MATH1141 Higher Mathematics 1A

One of:
-MATH1231 Mathematics 1B
-MATH1241 Higher Mathematics 1B

Complete Level 1 Core Courses

Complete Level 1 core courses, PLUS:

Discrete Mathematics

Complete Level 1 Core Courses

Level 2 courses

ECON2112 Game Theory & Business Strategy

One of:
-MATH2501 Linear Algebra
-MATH2601 Higher Linear Algebra

One of:
-MATH2801 Theory of Statistics
-MATH2901 Higher Theory of Statistics

Complete Level 2 core courses, PLUS:

One of:
-MATH2831 Linear Models
-MATH2931 Higher Linear Models

MATH2871 Data Management for Statistical Analysis

Complete Level 2 core courses, PLUS:

COMP2911 Engineering Design in Computing

COMP2041 Software Construction: Techniques & Tools

Complete Level 2 core courses, PLUS:

One of:
-ECON2206 Introductory Econometrics
-MATH2831 Linear Models
-MATH2931 Higher Linear Models

ECON2209 Business Forecasting
Level 3 courses

COMP3311 Database Systems

DATA3001 Data Science and Decisions in Practice

ECON3203 Econometric Theory & Methods

Complete Level 3 core courses, PLUS:

MATH3821 Statistical Modelling & Computing


MATH3871 Bayesian Inference & Computation

Complete Level 3 core courses, PLUS:

COMP3121 Algorithms & Programming Techniques

COMP9313 Big Data Management

COMP9417 Machine Learning & Data Mining

Complete Level 3 core courses, PLUS:

ECON3208 Applied Econometric Methods



24 UOC

12 UOC

30 UOC (18 from UNSW Business School)


A large range of electives are offered, drawn from three faculties:
Science, UNSW Business School, and Engineering.

Below are a small sample of available electives for this program:

ACTL3142 Actuarial Data and Analysis
MARK3085 Digital Marketing and Web Analytics
COMP9417 Machine Learning and Data Mining
MATH5836 Data Mining and its Business Applications
COMP3411 Artificial Intelligence
ECON3206 Financial Econometrics

More information about the program

Please see the UNSW 2017 Handbook listing for more details about the Bachelor of Data Science and Decisions.

You can also direct enquiries to the UNSW Science Student Centre, Ph: +61 2 9385 7788; Email:

Careers in Data Science

Data scientists and analysts use their skills to make discoveries and gain new insights through exploring data. The soaring demand for employees with qualifications in data science and analysis means that career opportunities abound across a range of areas.

Why are data scientists in such great demand?

The skills of data scientists are so highly coveted due to the sheer volume of data which organisations must contend with. Data scientists have the skills to analyse and interpret the growing volumes and help convert this information into insights, which can transform businesses and industries. Over the last four years, jobs requiring the use of data analysis and data management skills and tools have doubled. Jobs in data science can attract generous remuneration.

Ron Elazar
"As data volume continues to grow and organisations are looking to become more strategically focused, data science and decision modelling are increasingly essential tools for businesses to thrive in a competitive global environment. Having the right analytical tools is critical for growth and success in the 21st century workplace." 

Ron Elazar
, Senior Consultant at Deloitte Australia. Graduate of UNSW Mathematics and Statistics.

Annelies Tjetjep


“The potential for data analysis to impact big and small decisions in our lives is endless. From forecasting the peaks and troughs of chocolate biscuits in your local supermarket throughout a year, to pushing out intervention programs at the right time to people who are high risk of falling into debt. The best thing? These skills are transferable – the same techniques can be used across multiple applications, the only limit is your imagination.”

Annelies Tjetjep, Customer Success Manager, SAS Australia.

Ben Waterhouse
"Every job, every industry, requires more and more analytics, more and more understanding of numbers, and more competency when it comes to looking at problems and modelling things."

Ben Waterhouse, Founder of Model Solutions, a data analytics and forecast modelling company for the pharmaceutical industry. Graduate of UNSW Mathematics and Statistics.

“Data science takes the huge and growing amount of data now available in industry and research, and makes it meaningful and useful. This improves efficiency in business, and allows scientists to answer important questions in fields like climate change and cancer research. ”

Gordana Popovic, Statistical Consultant at Stats Central UNSW, Former PhD Student (Statistics) at UNSW Mathematics and Statistics.

Hamid Motahari
“As CEO of IBM, Ginni Rometty, said in 2014, ‘Data is becoming the new world’s natural resource’. Today, data scientists are not graduating as fast as we would like to hire them. This demand is only going to increase in years to come. And, there is no better place than UNSW with its high quality of professors in this space, and the quality of teaching and research programs that are second to none in this field.”   

Hamid Motahari, Research Group Lead, and Member of IBM Academy of Technology.
Graduate of UNSW Computer Science and Engineering.

Job opportunities

Data Scientists and Analysts are in very high demand in the key metropolitan areas and financial capitals of the world.

A simple web search to gauge the scope of job offerings available yielded some very impressive results:

New York: 5,389
San Francisco: 3,176
London: 2,965
Singapore: 1,054
Hong Kong: 537
Sydney: 566
Australia-wide: 1,073

(All searches conducted on 11 July 2016, via LinkedIn, for a "Data Analyst".)

Search now and browse the array of jobs available!

For more info, contact:
UNSW Science – Science Student Centre
Room 128, Robert Webster Building
UNSW Australia
Sydney NSW Australia 2052
Tel: +61 2 9385 7788

Download the program brochure