The Data Science Certification and Career

The Data Science Era

Data science is about seeking new knowledge from prevailing information. It requires curiosity, an inquisitive mind, and the readiness to take on a challenge. Grasping new skills and considering new viewpoints all the time is what it takes to succeed in this field. Think of professional certifications as something you can use to bridge the gap between academia and actual industry practices. They also provide tangible, third-party proof of your skills and allow you to position yourself strategically for your next job, promotion, or career move. Wherever you are in your career, you’d be smart to stack up a few certs relevant to the kind of work you’re doing, or the kind of work you want to do. In the world of data analytics where professionals are measured in terms of how far ahead of the game they are, any time is a good time to think about certification.

What you’re sure to notice first is that there are many data science vendor certifications available and more being introduced all the time. Are some certifications better than others? Do some hold more weight than others? To find the answers to these questions, you have to have a clear idea of what career path you’re going to follow and what technologies you hope to specialize in. More than almost any other computer science speciality, data science positions tend to be heavily specialized from firm to firm, with the unique legacy data structures and coding conventions that have grown in place taking precedence over general or even industry-standard toolsets. On the other hand, the list of available certifications for data science has not yet exploded in the way that some other specializations have. There remain a handful of significant tools and languages that are broadly applicable to data science, and the certifications specific to those tools remain the most important in the field in general. In addition to considering which technology stack you want to specialize in, you also have to consider what stage of your career you are currently in and what industry you plan to work within. A discussion among colleagues or a quick search of the latest job listings often sheds light on some of the hottest certs employers are looking for. Employers often encourage their data scientists to pursue vendor certification in specific areas, and many more pick up the cost of the program and exam. Some of the biggest vendors in data science certifications include some familiar names: IBM, SAS, and EMC, although there are plenty more to choose from.

Some of the certificates to start with are,


Dell EMC has just the ticket in their Data Science and Advanced Analytics Associate Certification (DECA-DS). The product-agnostic, technology-focused courses have a stack qualification track that allows you to take basic, core-level certification exams early on in your career (the Associate level) and then build on it later with more advanced training the achieve the Specialist designation later in your career. because the DECA-DS focuses on conceptual and logical aspects of big data and analytics work, it’s generally applicable to whatever stack your future dream employer may be using. At $200 per test, it’s a great value that you can continue to build on throughout your career in data science.

MCSA: Various SQL/Data Engineering Options

Microsoft’s Certified Solutions Expert (MCSE) in Data Management and Analytics is a valuable certification for organizations that use Azure or SQL Server as their data stores… which is a lot of the market. But to get an MCSE later in your career, you need to start out by earning a qualifying MCSA (Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate) certificate. Doing so both lays the groundwork for an eventual MCSE and also gives you a solid understanding of the basic technology that is underlying your high-level queries and data operations. Knowing how SQL Server functions at an operational level is a big plus when you’re trying to design efficient query structures and storage schemas as a full-fledged data scientist. The low cost also makes the MCSA a good option as an early-career certification. You have some options available, too. Any of these MCSAs builds to an eventual MCSE: Data Management and Analytics:

SQL Server 2012/2014

SQL 2016 Database Administration

SQL 2016 Database Development

SQL 2016 BI Development

BI Reporting

Although, there are many other certifications are there, we can list some of the most popular as follow,

Dell EMC DECS-DS (Advanced Analytics Specialty)

Microsoft MCSE Data Management and Analytics

Data Mining and Applications Graduate Certificate

There are different ways to look at how popular different certifications are among employers. The most obvious may be simply looking at how many instances a particular certification is mentioned in the job listing. But this might actually say more about the job listings than the certifications themselves. All three are platform-specific, and, as it happens, correspond closely to the most popular database platforms overall. So it makes sense that there would be more employers looking for candidates with those credentials than any other. But it doesn’t tell you much about popular skillsets around or beyond those platforms. Rarely do data scientists only work on one database; their talents in tying together disparate data sets and analyzing them reach into a different range of skills, which may be covered by different certifications entirely. What are they? One of the great things about data science, as an industry, is that if you have a question about a subject that can be quantified or analyzed in some way, you don’t have to wait very long before one of your fellow data scientists crunches the numbers and breaks it down for everyone.

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