Considering a data science degree in Tennessee? To help you sort through your options, we’ve put together a short guide to earning a data science degree in the Volunteer State. Already have a school in mind? Feel free to skip ahead to our list of all the data science programs in Tennessee.
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Southern Methodist University
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University of Denver
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University of California, Berkeley
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University of Dayton
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Studying Data Science in Tennessee
A lot has been going on in the city of Nashville that is relevant to the data science field. The city benefits from its proximity to Vanderbilt, research hospitals, and a number of health-related companies. Nashville is also a thriving tech scene.
Plus, like Nashville, Memphis has an abiding interest in healthcare & bioscience (e.g. Memphis Bioworks), data-driven startups (e.g. Start Co.), and accelerators (e.g. medical device inventions at ZeroTo510). Even smart cities have a place in its development plan (e.g. big data projects at Innovate Memphis).
Data Science Research & Initiatives at Tennessee Universities
Tennessee schools love data science research. Just to take a few examples:
- At Tennessee Technological University (Tennessee Tech), the College of Engineering is now conducting research into the Smart Grid, among other projects.
- At the University of Memphis (UM), you’ll find the FedEx Institute of Technology, which is involved in all kinds of big data research innovation clusters. Its MD2K Center of Excellence is a national Big Data Center of Excellence founded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Institute for Intelligent Systems (IIS) tackles psychological, biological, and artificial systems.
- At the University of Tennessee Knoxville (UTK), tech experts have deep bonds with the Oak Ridge National Laboratory. Examples of this partnership include the Bredesen Center, as well as the Joint Institute for Computational Sciences (JICS) and the JICS-operated National Institute for Computational Sciences (NICS). Both JICS and NICS are partners of the South Big Data Hub.
- At the University of Tennessee Chattanooga (UTC), it’s the interdisciplinary Big Data and Analytics Research Center (BDARC) that’s leading the way. Like JICS and NICS, BDARC is a partner of the South Big Data Hub and its researchers tackle problems of high national and global value. Interested in engineering applications? The SimCenter is conducting data-driven research into aerospace/defense, energy & environment, health & biological systems, manufacturing, and urban systems.
- At Vanderbilt, the biomedical and clinical informatics programs are closely tied to the medical school and the Department of Biomedical Informatics. In fact, the Vanderbilt HEAlth Data Science Center (HEADS) was built to tackle big data in the biomedical domain.
Online Data Science Programs in Tennessee
Compared to states like Missouri and California, Tennessee has fewer distance learning options for data scientists. However, you will still have some choice when it comes to master’s degrees. (Once you have a shortlist, be sure to check out our advice on what to look for in an online data science program.)
Online Graduate Certificates in Data Science
University of Tennessee offers an online graduate certificate in data science. If you’re looking for additional options, our directory of Online Graduate Certificates in Data Science has a list of programs in multiple specialties (e.g. data mining, analytics, healthcare informatics, etc.) from many big name schools (e.g. Stanford, Boston University, etc.).
Online Master’s Degrees in Data Science
Austin Peay State University (APSU) offers two degrees that focus on analytics, including the:
- Online Professional Science Master’s in Data Management and Analysis
- Online Professional Science Master’s Degree in Predictive Analytics
“Professional” programs tend to tone down research requirements and amp up career training. For example, APSU’s degrees include a component focused on areas such as communication, policy, business, law, or cybersecurity.
You could also consider UTC’s online Professional MBA with a concentration in Business Analytics. As we discuss in our Schools with Master’s in Business Analytics Programs, MBA programs are traditionally geared toward decision makers. However, UTC’s degree is really pushing technical skills, with courses in databases, data warehouses, and analytics.
Data Science Scholarships in Tennessee
For this section, we’ve highlighted an assistantship (i.e. institutional aid) that applies to the school’s data programs. Universities generally have more details on general aid (e.g. diversity scholarships), alternative financing options (e.g. low-interest loans), and tuition discounts.
Middle Tennessee State University
- MS in Health Care Informatics Graduate Assistantships: MTSU offers graduate assistantships to full-time students in the Health Care Informatics program. Assistantship holders receive a monthly stipend. The university will also cover all tuition and most fees.
Data Science Events in Tennessee
Data Science Meetups & Communities in Tennessee
Here are a few of the most popular groups:
- Data Science Nashville: This is a popular (1,600+ members) data science meetups in the state. It’s a practical group, with a focus on tools & technologies in data analysis, statistics, machine learning, and data visualization. But it also includes plenty of casual opportunities to network.
- Greater Nashville Healthcare Analytics: You knew there would be one! Created by folks from VUMC, MedSolutions, HCA, and TennCare, this meetup is open to anyone in the industry.
- Memphis Technology User Groups: The Memphis Technology Foundation maintains a community calendar for tech user groups & meetups in the Memphis area. Events occasionally focus on data science. Some user groups deal with specific languages and tools (e.g. R).
- NashBI: Designed for Business Intelligence analysts and developers, this meetup is part of the Microsoft Power BI User Group Program and affiliated with the Professional Association for SQL Server (PASS).
- Nashville Machine Learning Meetup: This group is open to anyone—beginner, intermediate, or expert—who wants to explore the possibilities of ML.
Data Science Conferences & Workshops in Tennessee
Tennessee has trouble competing with NYC and California when it comes to big conferences such as Strata+Hadoop World, IEEE International Conference in Big Data (IEEE Big Data), and MLconf. However, there are plenty of smaller events with clout. If you can afford to travel, you might also want to check out opportunities in southern centers like Austin/Dallas, Charlotte, and Miami.
- 36/86 Technology Conference: This is one of the city’s most popular startup events, with four days of panels, talks, networking, workshops, and a pitch competition.
- FedEx Institute Events: Run by the University of Memphis, the FedEx Institute organizes plenty of workshops, talks, and meetups. Check out the Emerging Innovation Series.
- Nashville Analytics Summit: Nashville’s annual two-day conference has been around for quite a while, and sessions cover everything you might expect—from data science and Business Intelligence to security and ethics.
- Nashville Technology Council (NTC) Event Calendar: The NTC maintains a helpful list of small(ish) tech events around town, including networking opportunities, hackathons, and workshops.
- RISE Nashville Summit: RISE specifically focuses on risk adjustment and quality performance optimization for healthcare plans & providers—think performance analytics, data management, and the like.
Data Science Jobs in Tennessee
Healthcare is a source of employment for data scientists in the Nashville/Franklin area. In addition to the Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC), Hospital Corporation of America (HCA), the Sarah Cannon Research Institute (SCRI), and TennCare, you’ll find names such as 3Cords Solutions (healthcare consulting) and eviCore (healthcare management) that exist in the same ecosphere.
But it’s not the only field where you may unearth opportunities. Along with the industries we mentioned in the intro, Nashville also has some data businesses (e.g. Digital Reasoning).
Prefer the Birthplace of Rock and Roll? In Memphis you’ll find big employers like FedEx, ServiceMaster, ALSAC (the fundraising arm of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital), and Wright Medical Group (medical devices).
Data-based companies are also gaining ground. We’re talking names like RocketFuel (predictive analytics), RemitDATA (healthcare analytics), and Quire. Even Expedient Data Centers has a facility in Memphis.
Data Scientist Salaries in Tennessee
In 2018, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, average salary for Computer and Information Research Scientists (which includes data scientists) was $113,960.
Data Science Programs in Tennessee
We found 8 universities in Tennessee offering Masters of Data Science programs (and/or closely related programs, like MS in Analytics / Masters in Business Analytics).
If you represent a university and would like to contact us about editing any of our listings, or adding new programs, please send an email to email@example.com.