Study programme

Data Science is a two-year research oriented Master's programme (120 EC). The credits are in EC (European Credits), where 1 EC is equivalent with 28 hours of work. 


The curriculum consists of a course part with several compulsory and elective courses in year 1, followed by a research part in year 2. 

1. Course part (75 EC)

The course part of the programme entails:

  • 4 compulsory courses (30 EC) 
  • 6 elective courses (45 EC) 

In the course list below you can find a description of the specific courses.

2. Research part (45 EC)

The second year of the programme is devoted to the research part in which students conduct a research project under the supervision of an academic staff member. The research project can be conducted within Utrecht University or at some external organization (university or institute with a research-and-development department). In the latter case, the external organization has to contribute significantly to the research project. 

The research project consists of 3 parts:

  • a colloquium presentation, including participation in the colloquium series of the programme 
  • a major literature study; 
  • and the final thesis. The thesis is defended publicly at the end of the research project.

Educational methods

  • Lectures
  • Practical- and lab assignments
  • Seminars
  • Learning by doing
  • Group learning.  


  • Written or online exams
  • Practical lab assignment
  • Presentation
  • Papers. 

Extra opportunities

Utrecht University offers several programmes for students looking for an extra challenge. These programmes are followed on top of your regular Master’s programme and go beyond the regular curriculum. Do you want to know more about extracurricular opportunities?

Read more about the honours programmes