Kunal Jain — Published On January 7, 2016 and Last Modified On January 31st, 2017
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Data Scientist is one of the hottest jobs of this decade. The demand for data scientists is much higher than available candidates (Source). So, there is a lot of incentive for people to look up to data science as a career option, and that is not going to change in near future.

However, if you do one search on Google, you will see your dream vanishing. There are too many resources, advice and paths suggested by various people, which makes it impossible for a beginner to take right decisions.

If you are facing a similar problem, let’s accomplish this in 2016. If you aspire to become a data scientist, this annual plan would make things much easier and faster for you. I’ve mentioned only the best resources you should follow. This plan is designed to make you a data scientist by December 2016 (conservative pace). If you can devote more time, great. You’d could achieve this feat much faster or with more depth by looking at additional resources (orange bullet).

ultimate path to become a data scientist in 2016


Click Here –> Link to Resources


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About the Author

Kunal Jain
Kunal Jain

Kunal is a post graduate from IIT Bombay in Aerospace Engineering. He has spent more than 10 years in field of Data Science. His work experience ranges from mature markets like UK to a developing market like India. During this period he has lead teams of various sizes and has worked on various tools like SAS, SPSS, Qlikview, R, Python and Matlab.

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46 thoughts on "The Ultimate Plan to Become a Data Scientist in 2016"

Arun says: January 08, 2016 at 3:59 am
This sets a clear path for people who would like to become data scientists. But do data scientists also need an adavnced degree in Computer science / statistics? Reply
Sudhindra says: January 08, 2016 at 4:08 am
Awesome and training plan for the year 2016 especially who are looking for getting into Data Sciences role. What about a training plan for people in the functional role? Reply
Niranjan Patil
Niranjan Patil says: January 08, 2016 at 4:26 am
Excellent article. Thanks Kunal. Could you please suggest some books for Statistics,Puzzles and Probability. Reply
Rathinavel says: January 08, 2016 at 5:34 am
Awesome work! very detail, keep up your good work Ji Reply
Shankar says: January 08, 2016 at 5:55 am
Hi Kunal, This is what I am looking for .... thanks so much. I am in ... will let you know how it went on Dec 2016! Regards, Shankar Reply
Shilpa Garg
Shilpa Garg says: January 08, 2016 at 5:57 am
This is really informative. Can you share a plan for Data Engineer (Big Data) also? Reply
Parag Mehta
Parag Mehta says: January 08, 2016 at 6:08 am
Thanks Kunal, awesome information. Also can you publish similar details for learning Hadoop and all connecting technologies? Thanks again for the help. Reply
Supriya Panda
Supriya Panda says: January 08, 2016 at 6:24 am
What are the courses needs to be taken a fresher B.Tech Students Reply
Murthy says: January 08, 2016 at 6:44 am
Very good plan. I have a few months jumpstart given that I already call myself a data scientist. and I'm more than familiar with R and Tableau (atleast). The next steps would be to get good fundamentals on machine learning, really understand the algorithms with application focus and get more active with data science competitions and puzzles and everything. Reply
Dhirendra says: January 08, 2016 at 7:15 am
Thanks Kunal! It is indeed very helpful. Reply
Karthik says: January 08, 2016 at 8:32 am
Hi Kunal, This is really wonderful, the way you have highlighted the course one should take to become a Data Scientist. Re. the Analyst meet-ups and forums, can you suggest a few of them (of course, apart from AV :) ) ? Reply
Ulhas Shetty
Ulhas Shetty says: January 08, 2016 at 9:15 am
Hi Kunal, Thanks for the wonderful article. It is really helpful for beginners like me jumpstart the data science journey. I had this one question or sort of a concern about the first initial step of this devised programme. So when you mentioned about attending Data Science meetups, you mean to the conferences that happen in a particular city or are there online forums that have these meetups? Any suggestions on where can we get information of these meetings or such forums. Thanks! And really appreciate your help. Regards, Ulhas. Reply
raamesh says: January 08, 2016 at 9:40 am
Is it mandatory that one should be maths/ stats or engineering graduate to become a data scientists. i have done my graduation in biology and MBA in finance and marketing. Can i go for this course. After completion of the course will i face any difficulty in getting a job as my graduation is not from maths/ stats/ computer. till class 12th i have studied maths. Reply
Ramesh says: January 08, 2016 at 12:18 pm
Murthy, I have completed my Business Analytics course from NIIT. I would like to connect with you. my email id is [email protected] send me email or let me know your email id. Reply
RAKESH KUMAR says: January 08, 2016 at 12:53 pm
Thanks Kunal for charting out a plan to become a Data Scientist by end of 2016. The Skill sets you have mentioned to become a Data Science are as below: R, Python,Machine Learning, Qlikview Tableau, D3.J, Adobe Insight (Omniture) and Matlab, etc Are SAS and SPSS skills have any scope to be a part of Data Scientist? Please advise. Regards, Rakesh Reply
Abdul says: January 08, 2016 at 1:12 pm
I think by the time one gets to December he would have forgotten all that he learnt till June. Shoudn't the learning be in small chunks which one can practice thoroughly before moving onto the next tool/concept? Here its almost like learning a new thing every month. Data scientists don't get created by jumping from one tool/concept to another so quickly. Just my 2 cents Reply
Sherri says: January 08, 2016 at 2:59 pm
Thanks, Kunal ... I always enjoy your articles, and this one is exceptional. I am in my last semester of a Master's Data Mining program and have completed a number of Udacity/Udemy/Coursera courses using Python, Tableau & Qlikview. Sometimes I feel like I am jumping all over the place, but your article has given me faith that I am on the right track. I'll start focusing on some additional Machine Learning and practice on the data sets/competitions on Kaggle. Thanks again ... you made my day! Reply
Ramdas says: January 08, 2016 at 3:38 pm
Excellent article, very well laid out plan. Reply
Blaine Bateman
Blaine Bateman says: January 08, 2016 at 5:21 pm
Hi Kunal--thank you for putting a good structure around this, and identifying intermediate goals and jumping-off points. Reply
Kunal Jain
Kunal Jain says: January 08, 2016 at 7:10 pm
Hi Arun, You don't need an advanced degree in Computer Science / statistics necessary. Infact any degree in a quant background is good - I did aerospace engineering. I have seen people from Economics background do well in industry. Hope this helps. Kunal Reply
Kunal Jain
Kunal Jain says: January 08, 2016 at 7:13 pm
Rakesh, There can be equivalent routes on any of the platforms - we chose R / Python, because they are open source and that enables people to learn a lot of concepts with out worrying about access to the tool. If you have access to SAS (E-Miner or equivalent) or SPSS, you can chart out your own parallel path by all means. Remember, becoming a good data scientist is not about the tool. It is about problem solving with data. Hope this helps. Regards, Kunal Reply
Bilwa Prasad
Bilwa Prasad says: January 09, 2016 at 3:00 am
Hi Kunal, Thank you for providing the path... i just wanted to know when you say attend meetups. Can you share some of them. Reply
Kunal Jain
Kunal Jain says: January 11, 2016 at 8:08 am
Sudhindra, Thanks for the suggestion. We do have something in pipeline one similar lines. However, the breadth of functional roles make it difficult to chart out a plan like this. Regards, Kunal Reply
Kunal Jain
Kunal Jain says: January 11, 2016 at 8:16 am
Hi Niranjan, Thanks for your appreciation. We plan to publish an article on stats and probability. For now, you can check out this thread: http://discuss.analyticsvidhya.com/t/which-is-the-best-statistics-and-analytics-book/275 Also, you can check out articles on puzzles through our search. Regards, Kunal Reply
Kunal Jain
Kunal Jain says: January 11, 2016 at 8:17 am
Thanks Rathinavel. Reply
Kunal Jain
Kunal Jain says: January 11, 2016 at 8:18 am
Sure Shankar. Will wait to hear from you. Feel free to provide intermediate updates as well. Reply
Kunal Jain
Kunal Jain says: January 11, 2016 at 8:19 am
All the best Murthy. Let us know, how it goes. Looking forward to see you in Analytics Vidhya hackathons. Regards, Kunal Reply
Kunal Jain
Kunal Jain says: January 11, 2016 at 8:22 am
Bilwa, We now run meetups in almost all metros is India. Here are links to them: http://www.meetup.com/Data-Science-Bangalore/ http://www.meetup.com/Data-Science-Delhi/ http://www.meetup.com/Data-Science-Kolkata/ http://www.meetup.com/Data-Science-Chennai/ http://www.meetup.com/Data-Science-Mumbai/ http://www.meetup.com/Data-Science-Pune/ Hope this is helpful. Regards, Kunal Reply
Kunal Jain
Kunal Jain says: January 11, 2016 at 8:24 am
Thanks Shilpa. We plan to publish a few learning paths in this series. Regards, Kunal Reply
Kunal Jain
Kunal Jain says: January 11, 2016 at 8:25 am
Thanks Blaine. You are welcome. Reply
Kunal Jain
Kunal Jain says: January 11, 2016 at 8:26 am
I am glad that this helped Sherri. See you around in Analytics Vidhya hackathons. Regards, Kunal Reply
Kunal Jain
Kunal Jain says: January 11, 2016 at 8:28 am
Thanks Adbul. Very valid thought. The idea of this structure is not to jump from one area to another, but to build on it. The concepts you learn early in the path, would be useful later on and you will continue to build on them. Regards, Kunal Reply
Sudhindra says: January 11, 2016 at 8:55 am
Thanks will await for the excitement! Reply
Niranjan Patil
Niranjan Patil says: January 11, 2016 at 9:51 am
Hi Kunal, Thanks for your reply and the link. I look forward for your upcoming article on Stats and Probability. I just came through one book on basic Statistics. It seems good for me as all basic concepts explained clearly with colorful figures,examples and in nice organized manner. I just started reading it. Name of Book : Statistics Explained (Third edition) Author Name : Perry R. Hinton Thanks, Niranjan Reply
Shivendra says: January 12, 2016 at 7:02 am
Hey Kunal, This is definitely a very good 'journey path' for very the first of the beginners. I would also like to add the Coursera certificate that has just been move to their new platform. They teach from start to end whatever R has to offer. Its a very good course for professionals or even for those very new to data science and statistics. Reply
Akshay Kher
Akshay Kher says: January 12, 2016 at 9:55 am
Hi Kunal, A really good article :) Regards, Akshay Kher Reply
Rakesh Kumar
Rakesh Kumar says: January 12, 2016 at 12:57 pm
Dear Kunal, Thanks for clarification... I really admire your knowledge and thought process to help out others in a Noble cause. Keep it up!.. Regards, Rakesh Reply
David Smith
David Smith says: January 14, 2016 at 4:32 pm
Not necessarily. And you can also download materials to learn SAS skills for free - http://www.sas.com/en_us/learn/analytics-u.html Reply
Pranati says: January 18, 2016 at 4:28 am
It is an awesome article Kunal!!! And I've started working towards it.. But i have a little scare here on my part, as being a complete fresher in this part (having around 8 years of experience in programming). Can connecting to people can get one jobs because everyone expects atleast some experience in this field and will not take risk with an absolute fresher. Kindly advice :) Reply
Hari D R
Hari D R says: January 18, 2016 at 2:06 pm
Hey Kunal, I am very interesting in data science... I always enjoy your articles.... I want to do Major project in analytic's please give me some Ideas... Reply
Praveen says: January 21, 2016 at 5:11 am
Hey Kunal, Brilliant Article. One quick question though. I just got an admission offer from ISB for the Certificate Program in Business Analytics. Where does this fit in to this journey of becoming a Data Scientist? Reply
Fahad says: January 24, 2016 at 10:42 am
Hi, many thanks for arranging these resources on one page. I have some simple questions. I have seen some job posts for junior data scientist, they all demand a Msc in Stats, so what do you suggest about a person with Msc in Computer Science, can e still go in this field with confidence or it will be difficult for him to get a job. Second question is, if a person (like me, a computer science graduate) completes the above learning path, then how much else he will have to learn to get an entry level job. The stats courses mentioned above are enough to do this job or he will struggle with that. Thanks, Reply
Harneet says: February 24, 2016 at 8:50 pm
Hi Kunal, I am trying to learn Python, but there are multiple variants of software and I am unable to find some good reading material. Can you please suggest some good reading material - On the lines of SAS by example by Ron Cody. Regards, Harneet. Reply
Joe says: March 01, 2016 at 4:43 am
Thank You very much for creating a road map like this. You have taken the time to also include the basic statistics and probability courses which is very helpful. Reply
aman says: August 22, 2016 at 3:47 pm
sir i just passed out mphil statistics and i want to be a data scientist now please suggest me that what should i do? Reply
sukurocking says: November 26, 2016 at 10:39 am
Hi Kunal, Kudos to you for creating such a wonderful article, demonstrating "The Ultimate Plan". There is one small doubt creeping in my mind. Is there a need of a data scientist certification from various institutes like Jigsaw or Simplilearn? I mean, if one follows this "ultimate plan" diligently, won't he get placed as a data scientist? Reply

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