Data Studies Program for Undergraduates
We visited 20 companies in Silicon Valley and throughout northern California and they would really like to hire graduates of UC Davis who have the critical thinking and big picture skills of social science and humanities. But they also need these graduates to understand their number one problem: data.
Companies run on data, often in the form of Excel spreadsheets and Access databases. Companies are full of more data than they know how to analyze. Over and over again, businesses told us that they need graduates who want to think about customers as people as well as data, who are willing to work with data scientists to identify problems, assist with cleaning, interpret findings and ask whether a presentation really shows what it promises. This is an exciting combination of high tech and big think, and it is what companies are looking for. Are you interested?
Have the Liberal Arts major that you love and get a good job!
- Tim McCarthy, UCD alum, author, former president of Charles Schwab and Nikko Asset
These courses provide the bridge between your major and the business world. In these courses you will learn how to think about and manipulate data, how to think and work computationally with data problems, and how to visualize and communicate your findings in teams and individually.
These are not “data science” courses and they do not require knowing statistics or how to program. Instead, these course take your ability to think and work with social problems and add the core skills and understanding necessary for entering today’s organizations, for working with data scientists and business leaders together, and for solving data-driven problems.
Data Sense and Exploration
Instructor: Matthew Espe
STS.198 "Directed Group Study" (Limited seats. Students must register and set the number of units to 4. It will say P/F but the class will have grades.)
Maybe stories are just data with a soul.
Increase your value to employers by learning data insights and skills the hands-on way.
- Work with data to pose interesting questions and develop and tell meaningful stories
- Learn how 15 basic commands in R can allow you to explore data and visualize insights.
- Gain intuition about confounding variables.
- Contextualize data analysis historically and socially and assess its power through storytelling.
Gain confidence in exploring data and identifying potential insights and issues.
All while getting a gentle, non-technical introduction to the R computing environment for data analysis, a very widely used system in industry and academia.
The course will cover:
1. Using data to reason about and answer socially important questions;
2. Skeptically framing and evaluating questions and answers;
3. Presenting results to different audiences and stakeholders;
4. Manipulating data with a high-level programming language.
No previous programming experience or prerequisites are necessary. For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Data Studies program offers UC Davis undergraduate students a unique opportunity to take the major they love and apply it to the world of data, learning how to question, analyze and present data research that will enable them to get jobs.