About Data Science or Data Analytics – The Education Pathway at Top Private Universities, Career, Job Demand and Salary in Malaysia
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Data Science or Data Analytics is a combination of various tools, algorithms, and machine learning principles with the aim to find hidden patterns from the raw data. A Data Analyst explains what is going on by processing history of the data. While a Data Scientist not only does the exploratory analysis to discover insights from it, but also uses various advanced machine learning algorithms to find the occurrence of a particular event in the future. A Data Scientist will look at the data from many angles, sometimes angles not known earlier. All these make Data Science very valuable to companies who want to target large groups of people or customers and analyse the data and behaviour so that they could come up with business strategies.
Data Science or Data Analytics is a new field of study in Malaysia and the job demand and salary is very high. Top private universities in Malaysia for data science will help prepare you well to succeed in your career equipping you with the knowledge and skills to earn a high income.
You might also be interested to read the following articles on Data Science
- Top 2 Universities in Malaysia Best for Data Science Degree Course
- Best Data Science Degree Courses at Top Ranked Universities in Malaysia
- Job Demand & Salary for Data Scientists in Malaysia According to MDEC
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Find Out More About Data Science, the Education Pathway at Top Private Universities, Career, Job Demand and Salary in Malaysia
What is the Job Demand for Data Scientists in Malaysia?
Malaysia’s national ICT agency Multimedia Development Corporation (MDeC) has unveiled a plan, supported by seven public and private institutes of higher learning (IHLs), to increase the number of local data scientists from the current 80 to 2000 by the year 2020.
Statistics show that by the year 2020, there will be about two million job openings for data professionals and that the demand for people with this knowledge and skill will outstrip supply by a ratio of two to one. It’s a global phenomena which is already in motion and Malaysia has set its sights on developing 20,000 data professionals and 2,000 data scientists by 2020.
There is a tremendous requirement for Data Scientists and Big Data Specialists worldwide now and in the future, with hundreds of thousands of new job opportunities emerging globally. In Malaysia alone, by the year 2020 this need is expected to reach at least 20,000 data professionals and 2000 data scientists. Job demand as well as salary for qualified Data Scientists or Big Data Professionals in Malaysia is high.
What are the most in demand job Skills in Malaysia?
A report from the recent Digital Workforce of The Future by LinkedIn, which revealed that a combination of skills encompassing Big Data, data analytics and web development registered a 21% growth in demand. In Malaysia, the top five in-demand digital skills are big data, software and user testing, mobile development, Cloud computing and software engineering management.
What is the Salary for Data Scientists in Malaysia?
Data science fresh graduates can demand starting pay in the range of RM4,000-RM8,000 — making it the highest paid entry level job in the country today.
An experienced professional in the field can demand up to RM15,000 a month.
Many employers are building their teams from ‘scratch’, accepting candidates with entry-level industry experience. The large salary range reported by employers for a data scientist from more than RM 15,000 per month to less than RM 5,000 per month may reflect a lack of precision in defining the role of a data scientist. While compensation will differ by candidate experience and performance, it is important that this role is not undervalued. Data science competencies such as statistical modelling and machine learning require a high education investment which should be recognised.
What is Data Science?
Data science is a combination of different disciplines such as data inference, algorithm development, and technology so that we can solve analytically complex problems. Huge amounts of raw information, streaming in and stored in enterprise data warehouses. We will need advanced systems and capabilities to sort out the data and analyse it to be used to create value for business.
For example, if a Hypermarket or Supermarket could use the data collected each day from their customers such as past buying history, when they shop, what they like to buy, how much they spend, age, income, etc. Then, the Hypermarket can analyse the data to make strategies on which products to stock more, how to price the products, when to have sales to increase the customer walk in, etc.
Another example is online shopping, where you could understand the exact requirements of your customers from the data such as the customer’s past browsing history, what they buy, when they buy, how much they spend on average each time, age and income. With the large amount and variety of data, you can train models more effectively and recommend the right product to your customers with more precision. You could also target ads specifically to their interests? Have you ever clicked on to a brand, and then the ad seems to follow you every where? That’s data science.
How do data scientists mine out insights?
It starts with data exploration. When given a challenging question, data scientists become detectives. They investigate leads and try to understand pattern or characteristics within the data. This requires a big dose of analytical creativity.
Then as needed, data scientists may apply quantitative technique in order to get a level deeper – e.g. inferential models, segmentation analysis, time series forecasting, synthetic control experiments, etc. The intent is to scientifically piece together a forensic view of what the data is really saying.
This data-driven insight is central to providing strategic guidance. In this sense, data scientists act as consultants, guiding business stakeholders on how to act on findings.
What do Data Scientists do?
Data scientists combine statistics, mathematics, programming, problem-solving, capturing data in ingenious ways, the ability to look at things differently to find patterns, along with the activities of cleansing, preparing, and aligning the data.
Dealing with unstructured and structured data, Data Science is a field that encompasses anything related to data cleansing, preparation, and analysis. Put simply, Data Science is an umbrella term for techniques used when trying to extract insights and information from data.
There are three main streams data professionals can branch out into – data scientists, data analysts and data engineers. While a career in data engineering would revolve around a job that is quite technical (imagine a mechanic working on a car), he or she is said to look at data a little differently compared to a data analyst, who is trained in programming skills, with a little aptitude in statistics and comes from a mathematical background.
What is the Job Description for a Data Scientist in Malaysia?
The 3 key roles identified for data science teams represent natural areas of focus and division of labour:
- Data Scientist – Use analytical techniques combined with data skills to develop scalable and robust analytical models
- Data Engineer – Design and develop high-performance infrastructure and tools to enable users to consume and understand data more effectively
- Data Analyst – Communicate insights that deliver business value based on exploratory analysis
The most common job titles used by our reviewers were data analyst, data scientist and data engineer. The amount of demand for data analysts in the job market should not be under-estimated. Data analysts may play an important role in deriving value from data assets while companies build out their predictive capabilities.
While some employers are still recruiting for data modellers and data miners, we anticipate that these titles will be eventually encompassed and replaced by ‘data scientist’; skills such as programming and data wrangling are likely to be enhanced by these professionals.
Other titles that employers used included data architect, data visualization engineer, soft-ware research engineer, research analyst, researcher, statistician and actuary. A data science team may also be supported by other roles such as chief data analytics officer, database administrator and data governance officer. It should be noted that several job titles may refer to a similar role. For example, a data engineer may be called a software engineer or big data engineer.
Who Should Study Data Science in Malaysia?
Students who love Mathematics, research and analysis are excellent candidates to study Data Science.
A common personality trait of data scientists is they are deep thinkers with intense intellectual curiosity. Data science is all about being inquisitive – asking new questions, making new discoveries, and learning new things. Ask data scientists most obsessed with their work what drives them in their job, and they will not say “money”. The real motivator is being able to use their creativity and ingenuity to solve hard problems and constantly indulge in their curiosity.
Deriving complex reads from data is beyond just making an observation, it is about uncovering “truth” that lies hidden beneath the surface. Problem solving is not a task, but an intellectually-stimulating journey to a solution. Data scientists are passionate about what they do, and reap great satisfaction in taking on challenge.
What will you study in Data Science at a private university in Malaysia?
Data Science or Big Data Analytics focuses on designing and developing solutions to draw useful insights from the availability of large volumes of data, known as Big Data. Students will receive fundamental training in computer science theories and learn techniques on the processing of Big Data for analytics that can be impactful to business.
What are some of the Subjects that I will Study in a Data Science Degree at a Private University in Malaysia?
- Introduction to Management
- System Analysis & Design
- Fundamentals of Software Development
- Mathematical Concepts for Computing
- Operating Systems & Computer Architecture
- Introduction to Networking
- Introduction to Databases
- Introduction to C Programming
- Introduction to Data Analytics
- Behavioural Science and Marketing Analytics
- Computing Theory
- Data Structures
- Concurrent Programming
- System & Network Administration
- Computer Systems & Low Level Techniques
- Probability & Statistical Modelling
- Data Mining & Predictive Modelling
- Object Oriented Development with Java
- System Development Methods
- Professional & Enterprise Development
- Creativity & Innovation
- Research Methods for Computing & Technology
- Real-Time Systems
- Emergent Technology
- Text Analytics & Sentiment Analysis
- Business Intelligence Systems
- Database Security
- Optimisation Concepts for Data Science
- Investigation in Computer Science
- Computer Science Projects
- Programming Fundamentals
- Discrete Structures & Probability
- Professional Development
- Computational Methods
- Object Oriented Programming & Data Structures
- Computer Architecture & Organisations
- Database Fundamentals
- Research Methodology in Computer Science
- Software Engineering Fundamentals
- Operating Systems
- Computer Networks
- Object Oriented Analysis & Design
- Algorithm Design & Analysis
- Statistical Data Analysis
- Data Visualisation
What Qualifications do I need to work in Data Science in Malaysia?
Job-seekers for data science roles require baseline higher education, holding a Bachelor’s Degree at a minimum. Employers however value short courses and MOOCs in resumes as they reflect active lifelong learning and commitment.
While a PhD is not a prerequisite to becoming a data scientist, advanced education is valued. Soft skills such as critical and creative thinking are sought after. Finding an individual that is strong in all the competencies for a data scientist is very rare: the formation of teams with complementary skill sets can address this challenge. Ultimately, employers desire team members who will add value to the ‘bottom line’ of a business through delivering actionable insights.
What is the Entry Requirements to Study Data Science?
Students after SPM or O-Levels may go for the Foundation in Computing at Asia Pacific University for 1 year before continuing on to the 3-year Bachelor of Science (Hons) in Computer Science with specialism in Data Analytics degree.
With 3 credits in SPM or O-Levels including Maths, students may go for the 2-year Diploma in Information & Communications Technology or Diploma in Information & Communications Technology with specialism in Software Engineering and then enter into Year 2 of the Data Analytics degree at Asia Pacific University (APU).
Alternatively, students who want an affordable and yet top ranked computer science private university in Malaysia may choose to take the Foundation in Information Technology (IT) or Diploma in Information Technology (IT) at Multimedia University (MMU) the Bachelor of Computer Science (Hons.) Specialising in Data Science.
Pre-University students with the relevant results in STPM, A-Levels, SAM, CPU, AUSMAT, etc. can enter directly into Year 1 of the Data Science or Data Analytics degree programmes at Heriot-Watt University Malaysia, Asia Pacific University (APU) or Multimedia University (MMU).
Which are the Top Private Universities in Malaysia to Study Data Science?
- Asia Pacific University (APU) offers the BSc (Hons) in Computer Science with specialism in Data Analytics
- Multimedia University (MMU) offers the Bachelor of Computer Science (Hons.) Specialising in Data Science.