By Natassha Selvaraj, Student in CS majoring in Data Science.

Photo by Luke Chesser on Unsplash.

As a beginner looking to break into the data science industry, it’s easy to get overwhelmed with all the information presented to you. There are hundreds of data science courses out there, and it is difficult to know where to start.

When I decided to teach myself data science just a year ago, I remember feeling really lost because I didn’t know where to start. I saw advertisements for machine learning courses that promised to make me an expert in three days.  I read articles insisting it wasn’t possible to become a data scientist unless I had a Master’s degree in mathematics and a Ph.D. in statistics. There was just too much information out there and so many conflicting opinions.

I finally managed to create my own data science roadmap and teach myself programming and machine learning. I managed to break into the industry and land a data science job.

Every day, at least one person asks me how I did this, how to learn data science from scratch, and land a job in the industry. I did some research and compiled a list of online courses you can take to learn data science. The syllabi of these courses are good and will give you a strong foundation in programming, SQL, and machine learning. I use almost all the concepts taught in these courses during my day job as a data scientist.

Programming

Photo by James Harrison on Unsplash.

If you want to learn data science, you first need to learn how to code. If you have no prior programming experience, I suggest starting out with Python.

There is an abundance of resources on the Internet that teach you Python programming, some of which include:

This is a 5-course specialization that will teach you Python from scratch. The first course in the specialization is called Programming for Everybody. In this course, you will learn the very basics of Python — syntax, conditional statements, iteration, functions, and variables.

This course doesn’t assume any pre-requisite, and you don’t need to come from a technical or mathematical background to get started with this course.

The next course in the specialization will teach you data structures. You will learn how to read data from files and manipulate data structures like lists and dictionaries.

The third course in the specialization teaches you to use Python to access web data. You will learn to use APIs and extract data from websites and then…

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