Engineering quad, University of Rochester.

The Master of Science (MS) in Data Science program at the University of Rochester is seeking motivated, qualified, and well-rounded applicants. A bachelor’s degree in a STEM field is preferred but not required. Prospective students should have undergraduate mathematics experience through basic calculus, but do not need college-level statistics or data analytics. Prospective students should also have some prior programming experience.

Admissions to the program are decided by the graduate admissions committee. Committee members consider many factors in their final decision including GPA, past coursework, academic transcripts, experiences related to data science, letters of recommendation, statements of purpose, resumes/CV and standardized test scores.

To find out if an MS in Data Science is right for you, visit our graduate overview page and learn about our program outcomes.

Prospective students interested in applying to our Advanced Certificate program should visit the Advanced Certificate web page to learn more.

Start Your Application

Application Requirements
  • Graduate Program Online Application
  • Academic Transcripts 
    • In English or with a certified English translation.
    • Unofficial transcripts or copies of in-process transcripts are acceptable.
  • Statement of Purpose
    • The Statement of Purpose should clearly describe your:
      1. Motivations for applying to the program.
      2. Preparation for graduate-level studies in data science.
      3. Study and research interests, future career plans, and other interests or aspects of your background that may aid the Admissions Committee in evaluating your aptitude and motivation for graduate study.
    • Most statements are one to three pages long. Succinct statements are appreciated. 
  • Resume or Curriculum Vitae (CV)
  • Three (3) Letters of Recommendation
    • Applicants must include contact information for each reference to submit an application. References will be notified directly, and prompted to upload their recommendation letters.
    • Applications can be submitted before recommendations letters have been uploaded, however all letters of recommendation must be received before the review deadline.
  • For non-native English speakers:
    • Official English language proficiency test scores are required. TOEFL, IELTS, and Duolingo scores are acceptable.
    • We strongly encourage non-native English speakers to submit an additional one page essay describing their experience with the English language, including formal study in English, time spent in an English-speaking environment, and/or their comfort level speaking and writing in English. 
  • GRE score reporting is optional.
    • Applicants who wish to submit GRE scores may have them sent from Educational Testing Service (ETS) or self-report. For self-reported scores, we require a copy of the ETS score report for verification.
English Language Proficiency Examination

All non-native English speaking applicants are required to provide English language proficiency examination scores as part of their application, unless they qualify for a waiver. Examination criteria are included below.

Accepted Exams

  • Duolingo (DET)
    • Applicants should have a minimum score of 120
    • DET scores must be sent directly from Duolingo. There is no cost to send scores. 
  • International English Language Testing System (IELTS) 
    • Applicants should have a minimum score of 7. 
    • Please have the IELTS report sent to University of Rochester, Graduate Studies AS&E, 500 Joseph C. Wilson Blvd, Box 270401, Rochester, NY 14627-0401.
    • We will not accept results for the IELTS Indicator.
  • Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) 
    • Applicants should have minimum scores of 620 (paper-based test), 260 (computer-based test), or 100 (Internet test)
    • Test results cannot be more than two-years old.
    • The University of Rochester will accept results from the in-person exam or the TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition Test. We will not accept scores from the TOEFL ITP Plus Assessment. 
    • The Institution Code is 7267.

Exam Waivers

The English language proficiency examination requirement is automatically waived for graduates of an English-speaking degree program from one of the following countries:

  • Australia
  • Canada
  • Ireland
  • New Zealand
  • United Kingdom
  • United States

The requirement is also waived for international graduate students currently studying in the United States. If the requirement does not waive automatically, contact

Important Notes

  • Applicants may submit test scores from one or more exam types (e.g. one DET and one IELTS score).
  • Applicants may submit more than one exam result (e.g. results from two sittings of the TOEFL iBT).
  • We do not super-score or combine sub-scores from different test sittings.
  • We do not accept TOEFL My Best Score results. The admissions committee will evaluate sub-scores and totals from each individual test sitting.

Below minimum test scores do not exclude an applicant from receiving an offer. However, the admissions committee strongly considers English proficiency scores when evaluating application packages. Students need excellent command of the English language to succeed in our program.

We strongly encourage applicants whose native language is not English (including those who have studied at English-speaking institutions) to upload a one page essay written in English. Pursing an advanced degree takes enormous effort, particularly when the language and culture are not your own. Applicants should share information about their experience with the English language, including formal study in English, time spent in an English-speaking environment, and/or their comfort level speaking and writing in English.

Graduate Record Examination (GRE)

GRE test scores are NOT an application requirement, however applicants can submit their scores for consideration. A good candidate has GRE quantitative scores in the 80th percentile, and above the 60th percentile in the verbal and analytical writing sections of the exam. 

Sending GRE Scores

Score reports may be sent from Education Testing Service (ETS) or may be self-reported.

  • Applicants who self-report must provide a copy of their ETS score report to their application for verification. 

If sending from ETS:

  • The University of Rochester Institution Code is 2928
  • The Department Code is 0499: Computer and Informational Sciences - Other.
For International Students

Please upload all application materials in English. If necessary, applicants can send materials in their original format, supplementing them with English translations.

Applicants with a three-year degree from a foreign institution must provide a WES evaluation certifying that their degree is equivalent to a US bachelor’s degree.

For up-to-date information on visas and other immigration requirements, please visit the University International Services Office (ISO).

Application Deadlines and Fees

Applications for Fall 2022 are now open.

Applicants who submit by January 5, 2022 receive priority review for Fall 2022 admission, and can expect to receive a decision by February 15, 2022. Applicants who submit by February 15 can expect to receive a decision by March 15. Applications received before February 15 have the highest probability of acceptance. After February 15 applications may be submitted, but have a much lower probability of review and acceptance. 

Applications must be submitted online, and should be initiated several weeks ahead of deadlines to ensure that all materials, including test scores and letters of recommendation, are received on time.

The application fee is $60. The fee may be waived for University of Rochester students, employees and alumni.

Students from outside the University of Rochester are not eligible for Spring 2022 admission. Current students from the Simon Business School, Warner School, School of Medicine and Dentistry or another UR program, interested in Spring 2022 enrollment, should contact by November 1, 2021 to discuss spring intake.

Contact Us

Admissions questions? Visit our Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) page or send an email to