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Know if Data Science Certifications are worth it or not

Abdul Samee

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Now, when the world is exploding with data every second, and businesses across industries around the globe are looking to get the most relevant insights, the demand for data scientists has become larger than ever. The US Bureau of Labour Statistics has projected the growth in demand for data science professionals to be around 28% between 2022-2030 which is much larger than the average for all other occupations. 

Therefore, it becomes necessary to bridge the skill gap along with standing out from the crowd in this competitive field if you want to make your data science career a rewarding one. Data Science certifications are one way to do it. But with the number of online data science certifications available, which one is right for you? And are these certifications really worth it? Let’s explore.

What are data science certifications?

Data Science certifications are structured programs that are designed to validate professionals’ knowledge, data science skills, and expertise in specific areas of data analysis. These courses can cover various topics like data wrangling, machine learning, data visualization, etc. While some certifications can focus on specific tools and technologies such as Google Cloud Data Analytics, other certification programs can emphasize broader data science concepts and techniques like the ones offered by IBM, USAII®, etc. When choosing the right certification course, the quality and recognition of the certifications should be considered.

Limitations of Data Science Certifications

Before we conclude if data science certifications are worth it or not, we must have a sound knowledge of their limitations which are as follows:

  • Do not guarantee a job

Having a certification under your belt does mean it will guarantee a job in data science. Certifications showcase commitment and foundational knowledge but they often lack the depth and practical experience that employers look for. 

A 2023 report from Kaggle, an online platform for data science and machine learning, reported 82% of hiring managers considered work experience a more important factor than data science certifications while hiring data scientists.

  • No universal standard or accredited certification authority

That means now every website, online course provider, institute, or learning platform can issue a data science certificate which will mean nothing more than a paper. A hiring manager gives a resume a maximum of 30 seconds to overview, and data science certifications won’t catch the attention in that period. 

All data science certifications do not hold equal value. So, it becomes highly important to choose a program that is already recognized by recruiters and can help you distinguish from others.

If the certifications don’t hold any value, what’s the point of getting certified? Well, data science certifications have a lot of value. Let me explain.

Why data science certifications are helpful?

  • Increases employability

Having a certificate under your belt means you commit to learning and excelling in your data science career. It gives your employer a clear message regarding your professional development. So, while looking for a job in data science, it can prove to be a distinguishing factor. 

In fact, some organizations may use data science certifications as a screening tool that will increase your visibility. A recent study from Indeed stated that 72% of hiring managers consider certification valuable when evaluating for data science roles.

  • Strengthen your knowledge and expertise

By enrolling in comprehensive and detailed best data science certification programs, you can get access to a structured learning experience. It will ensure you have a solid foundational knowledge in major data science core concepts. Also, these certifications can offer hands-on practical experience and projects to understand data science theories practically by solving real-world data problems.

  • Networking opportunities

Several online data science programs offer access to online communities and alumni networks which can help you increase your network among data science professionals. It further helps in building a professional relationship and support system within the community that are beneficial during job hunt. So, if you are seeking to change your career in data science, or just looking to get started, this valuable networking can be a great help.

Top Data Science Certifications recognized across industries

So, these are some of the best data science certification programs that are widely recognized among employers globally that you can consider to boost your data science career.

  • IBM Data Science Professional Certificate
  • Certified Senior Data Scientist (CSDS™) by USDSI®
  • Microsoft Certified: Azure Data Scientist Associate
  • Tensorflow Developer Certificate
  • Cloudera Data Platform Generalist Certification
  • Certified Data Science Professional (CDSPTM)

Earning these top data science certificates can boost your data science career tremendously.

Conclusions 

Ultimately, there is no simple answer like yes or no to this question if data science certifications are worth it or not. Though the certification programs offer several advantages including boosting employability and strengthening knowledge, they do not guarantee a data science job. In conclusion, if you are looking to establish a career in data science, then you must understand, that employers look for qualified and experienced data science professionals who can display the utmost professionalism and showcase relevant skills as per their requirements

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