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Master's Degree Programs in Machine Learning Online

Machine learning is a controversial but fast growing field with a growing job market. If you want to start a career using technology to build our collective human future, there are flexible online master's programs to set you on your way.

Comparing Online Master's Degrees in Machine Learning

M.S. in Machine Learning

Machine learning is an interdisciplinary master's degree program, meaning students take courses from a variety of departments across their university. A machine learning master's degree might include courses in Python programming, cognitive science, artificial intelligence, deep learning, and natural language processing. Applicants are recommended to have extensive background knowledge in linear algebra, statistics, computer science, and programming with Python. Most programs are full-time and last 1-2 years. Graduates can go on to rewarding careers in fraud detection, product development, finance, and data science.

M.S. in Computer Science with a Specialization in Machine Learning

In a computer science master's degree program students acquire the practical skills necessary to work as software engineers and programmers. After completing core classes, students choose electives and specialization. Many online computer science programs offer specializations in machine learning. Online computer science master's degrees are more common than machine learning programs, so applicants have more options to choose from. Online computer science master's degrees can be completed in 1-2 years full-time or 3-5 years part-time.

M.S. in Data Science

This master's degree program focuses on preparing students for careers in data science. Students learn the analytical skills necessary to deal with complex data sets. The coursework balances computer programming classes and applied mathematics classes. To succeed applicants should have a background in college-level mathematics (linear algebra, differential equations, or discrete mathematics) and at least one programming language (Java, C++, or Python). After completing foundation courses, students can choose to take elective courses in machine learning.

Degree Program Program Length Program Requirements Related Careers
Online Master's in Machine Learning1-2 years Undergraduate degree
College-level applied mathematics courses
Machine learning engineer
Machine learning scientist
Online Master's in Computer Science with a Specialization in Machine Learning 2-5 years Undergraduate degree Software engineer
Programmer
Online Master's in Data Science 2-3 years Undergraduate degree
Bachelor's degree in data science or relevant coursework
Data scientist
Data engineer

What Can You Do With an online Master's Degree in Machine Learning?

Machine Learning Engineer

Massive companies like Apple, Microsoft, Google, and Amazon are the biggest employers for graduates with a master's degree in machine learning. They recognize the power of machine learning to help build new products and run their companies more efficiently. Corporations, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and government organizations employ machine learning engineers to build pipelines for their data. Graduates can find work designing, building, and applying algorithms to teach machines how to use big data.

Data Scientist

Data scientists make data usable for their clients. They collect, analyze, and build programs to process data. Graduates with specialized expertise in machine learning know how to teach computers to automate the process of analyzing data. This means that data scientists with specialized knowledge of machine learning often earn higher salaries.

Machine Learning Researcher

Machine learning scientists explore the possibilities of machine learning and artificial intelligence. Rather than build algorithms for specific projects, researchers conduct original research and test the limits of machine learning ethics and practice. Machine learning scientists might work for a government bureau devising policy, for a nonprofit research laboratory, or inside massive technology companies like Google and Amazon.

Python Programmer

Graduates of an online machine learning master's program have extensive experience using Python, because it is the language most common in machine learning applications. Expertise in Python is a highly-valued skill in the technology field. Python programmers can find work building code for companies in almost any industry. With the combo of practical programming skills and an academic understanding of machine learning, graduates from an online program in machine learning stand out amongst fellow job-seekers.

Careers with a Master's in Statistics Median Salary (2019)* Job Growth (2018-28)**
Machine Learning Engineer $111,911 16% (computer and information research scientists)
Data Scientist (with Machine Learning Skills) $99,328 16% (computer and information research scientists)
Machine Learning Researcher $112,500 16% (computer and information research scientists)
Machine Learning Engineer (with Python Programming Skills) $112,085 -7% (computer programmers)

Sources: *Payscale.com, **U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Master's degree graduates with machine learning experience have a competitive skill-set and stand out in the field of job applicants. Because government organizations and massive technology companies see machine learning as a ticket to the future, graduates can find well-paying jobs within both the public and private sectors.