Frequently Asked Questions
Admissions and Application Questions
Q: When are admittance decisions made?
Most interviews will take place in mid to late March and all admissions decisions will be made by March 31st. Thank you for your patience.
Q: Who should apply for the Duke Master in Interdisciplinary Data Science (MIDS) program?
Q: What is the admissions committee looking for?
MIDS seeks creative, self-motivated students who are passionate about using data to solve problems. We’ll look for evidence that you’ve made efforts to learn about data science and that you’re confident data science is the right path for you.
We’re particularly excited to welcome students who want to apply data science to topics in which they already have deep expertise. Although certainly not required, we value compelling stories about specific problems you want to solve.
Q: When is the application deadline and is there an "early" deadline?
February 15, 2023.
Q: Is there an “early” deadline?
Q: What are the requirements to apply to MIDS?
Applicants need to have an undergraduate degree from an accredited institution (or will have completed their undergraduate degree before the fall semester begins).
- 3 letters of Recommendation
- Statement of Purpose
- English Language Proficiency Test Scores (if English is not your first language)
- 2-minute video
Not required but successful applicants to MIDS tend to also have:
- previous quantitative coursework (i.e., linear algebra, statistics, etc.)
- previous computer programming coursework or experience (i.e., Python)
Q: Is the GRE required?
The GRE is optional for the 2023 admissions cycle.
Q: Is there a minimum GPA or GRE needed to apply?
There are no minimum test score or GPA requirements to apply to MIDS. Our admissions committee reviews applications holistically and test scores and GPA are considered alongside other application components. See the Statistics section of The Graduate School’s website for the average GRE scores and GPAs of previously admitted applicants.
Q: Who should I ask to write me a recommendation letter? Do they all need to be from academic sources?
Q: Do you require a writing sample in the MIDS application?
Q: Is work experience required?
Q: Do I need a STEM degree to apply?
Q: My undergraduate degree is not in a STEM field, how do I provide evidence of technical background/ability?
Q: Are international students eligible to apply?
Q: Do you accept other English language proficiency exams?
Yes. Please refer to this webpage for more information about English language proficiency exams.
Q: What is Duke University code for the GRE and TOEFL?
Q: Do you prefer applicants who have just completed their bachelor’s degree or applicants with more professional experience?
Q: I’m currently in a graduate program but I’m thinking about transferring to MIDS, is this allowed?
Q: Do you admit students transferring from other graduate programs?
Q: How do I apply?
You can find detailed instructions on how to apply here.
Q: Can you provide feedback on my application before I submit it?
Q: I am having technical issues with the application, what should I do?
Q: How will I know when a decision has been made on my application?
Q: If I am denied admission, can I apply again?
Q: If I am denied admission, will I be told why?
Q: I have a three-year undergraduate degree, can I apply?
Q: Does MIDS require an interview?
Some candidates may be asked to interview if we have additional questions regarding your application/candidacy.
Q: Do I need to apply separately to be considered for a MIDS scholarship?
No, a separate application is not required.
Q: What are the costs to attend?
Please see The Graduate School’s website for tuition and other costs to attend: https://gradschool.duke.edu/financial-support/cost-attend/#masters
Q: Does MIDS offer scholarships?
Q: Can I apply for FAFSA?
Be a United States Citizen or an eligible noncitizen
If you have a “green card” (in other words, if you are a permanent resident alien), you will be considered an “eligible noncitizen” and will be able to get federal student aid if you meet the other basic eligibility criteria.
If you meet the eligibility requirements, please continue to studentaid.gov/h/apply-for-aid/fafsa. You will need to file the 2021/2022 FAFSA and have your completed tax returns for 2020. Graduate Students are considered independent, so therefore, NO parental income or information should be entered on the FAFSA. Our school code is 002920.
Q: What other resources are there for funding?
Q: Is there any funding for international students?
Q: When does the fall 2023 semester start?
The fall semester is scheduled to begin on Monday, August 28, 2023. New student orientation is scheduled for Tuesday, August 22. For other academic dates, please refer to the University’s academic calendar.
Please note that MIDS requires an online summer review (June-July 2023) and an on-campus programming bootcamp tentatively scheduled to begin on Monday August 7th 2023. More information will be shared to admitted students in Spring 2023.
Q: How long will it take for a full-time student to complete the Master’s program?
Q: Does the Master in Interdisciplinary Data Science (MIDS) program have STEM accreditation?
Q: Am I able to enroll part-time?
Due to the cohort nature of MIDS and sequencing of the curriculum, we do not allow students to enroll part-time.
Q: How many credits do I need to graduate?
Q: What courses do I need to take to graduate?
Students take 7 core MIDS courses, a 1 year Capstone Project course, and half credit seminar/workshop courses that focus on professional development. Further, MIDS students need to complete at least 4 semester long electives to graduate. A complete list of MIDS core courses can be found here.
Q: Are we able to waive certain CORE courses if we have already completed it at undergrad level?
Q: Can I transfer credits from another institution?
Q: Is the degree offered online?
Q: How do I find a list of pre-approved elective courses I can take?
There is a list on the MIDS website with “pre-approved” courses that are most common to students enrolled in MIDS. You can find that list here. However, students are not limited to these courses and should use DukeHub to explore other options related to their academic and career interests.
Students can also discuss with MIDS staff/faculty what they are looking for and then MIDS staff/faculty can advise from there. Please note: students are advised to not take an elective during their first semester.
Q: Can I take an undergraduate course and use it to fulfill a MIDS elective course requirement?
Q: Can I audit a course outside of the MIDS program?
Q: Will I be able to work or obtain a Research Assistant or Teaching Assistant position?
Q: How is a Master in Interdisciplinary Data Science (MIDS) degree different from a degree in statistics, math, or computer science?
Q: How is a Duke Master in Interdisciplinary Data Science (MIDS) degree different from a degree in business analytics?
Q: What is the online review?
Q: What is bootcamp and when does it start?
Q: Does MIDS assist with career and other professional development?
Yes. MIDS students take a 0.5 credit workshop series that focuses on career and professional development.
What is the minimum TOEFL, IELTS, or Duolingo English Test score required to apply?
The Graduate School and Duke MIDS generally seeks scores no less than: 90 for the Internet-based TOEFL, 577 for the paper-based TOEFL, 7.0 for the IELTS test, or 115 for the Duolingo English Test.
May I submit a WES or ECE credential evaluation with my application?
Yes, you may submit a credential evaluation from a third party (e.g. WES or ECE), but you must also submit the transcript from your institution.
Can I submit my application before all my recommendations are submitted?
Yes. Submit your application as soon as you have completed all the sections and sent recommendation requests to your recommenders. After you submit your application, the graduate admissions office can link recommendation letters as they are received.
It is critical that your letters of recommendation arrive by the application deadline.