What is MIDS - Program Overview

MIDS connects technical learning and expertise with the many domains in need of data insights. The true power of data in the twenty-first century lies in that connection and our program is developed around the belief that harnessing this power requires both interdisciplinary training and experience with team-based science.


  1. We've created a core group of courses for all MIDS students that's inspired by the data-to-decision cycle. These courses are centered on marshaling, analyzing, and visualizing data. They create a shared language for all students and a common frame of reference for data-driven projects.
  2. Our core courses draw on expertise and involve faculty from different disciplines across Duke. By doing so, they reflect the multiple quantitative disciplines that contribute skill sets to data science.
  3. Our key aim is to train data scientists who can address a diversity of topics, so students are encouraged to choose electives from different departments across Duke. We also offer opportunities to pursue advanced technical topics related to the core courses.
  4. We teach students the necessary skills to succeed on teams with experts in different fields, fellow data scientists, and stakeholders. This includes leading teams, thinking critically across disciplines, and communicating complex ideas to others.
  5. In order to train data scientists that are both technical experts and can apply their expertise to different topics, our training is a commitment of at least three and typically four semesters.

MIDS invites broad collaboration to connect data science with real-world problems. These problems are as varied as using social media to track health outcomes to visualizing thematic trends in literature across centuries. Duke’s interdisciplinary and collaborative research culture makes our campus an ideal place for such a program.