Master's | Online

Master of Science in Analytics Online

Frequently Asked Questions

When are applications due?

The MScA Online part-time program intakes students for both Spring and Autumn. The MScA Online full-time program intakes students for Autumn only. Please visit the How to Apply page for application deadlines.

When will I receive my admission decision?

Typically, admissions decisions are released a month after a student has submitted a completed application. Please note, the application must be complete in order to go into review. Please review How to Apply. Applicants are highly encouraged to submit before the respected application deadline.

If I finish my application before the deadline, will I receive my decision early?

Typically, we will release decisions a month after a student has submitted a completed application. Holidays and University events can extend decisions releases. Applicants are highly encouraged to submit before the respected application deadline.

How do I submit the materials that will accompany my application?

Please review How to Apply.

Does the admissions office allow recommenders to email their letter directly as an attachment to be included in an applicant’s file?

Unfortunately, no. Recommenders must upload their letter of support by using the URL that is sent to them electronically by our online application system.

Do I need to provide my recommenders with instructions?

No. Forms for letters of recommendation, along with instructions for completing and submitting the letters, are sent electronically to recommenders once names are added to the online application.

My recommender did not receive notification, can I resend it?

Yes. If a recommender does not receive a URL to complete a recommendation, the applicant may resend a duplicate link from their online application, or request the recommender check their spam folder.

Can I apply more than once for a start term, if I was already denied during an earlier review period?

No, you may only apply once per start term. You cannot apply for the same start term, if you were not offered admission previously. If you were not offered admission to the full-time program for autumn, you may apply again to the full-time program the following autumn. If you were not offered admission to the part-time program, you may apply again to the next intake, whether autumn or spring.

I took the GRE and want to include my score with my application. Is the GRE or GMAT required?

The GRE/GMAT is not required, but applicants can still submit their scores. The GRE school code is 1832, and the GMAT school code is H9X-WG-70.

What materials do I need to submit to accompany my application for admission?

Please carefully review the list of application materials to ensure your application file is completed on time.

Once I upload my unofficial transcripts to my application, do I still need to provide an official transcript?

Yes. One unofficial transcript from each university attended must be uploaded within the application. Please do not mail transcripts as part of your admission application; we only require unofficial uploads for application evaluation. If you are offered admission, one official transcript for each university attended will be required at least one month prior to matriculation. An unofficial transcript for undergraduate coursework is still required for the application even if you hold an advanced degree(s).

Who is exempt from providing proof of English proficiency?

English has been a primary language of communication and schooling for you since childhood; or you were enrolled for at least one academic year in full-time status in a course of study at an accredited English-medium post-secondary institution in one of the following countries or territories within the past ten years: Antigua and Barbuda, Australia, Bahamas, Barbados, Canada, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Hong Kong, Ireland, Jamaica, New Zealand, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Singapore, South Africa, Trinidad and Tobago, the United Kingdom, the United States.

Education in English-medium institutions in other countries or territories does not qualify for the exemption.

Please note that high school or secondary school does not qualify an applicant for exemption; nor do part-time or research-based programs that did not involve full time coursework in English.

Please do not contact departments or Admissions regarding a waiver. If you meet the criteria the application system will automatically not require you to report a TOEFL/IELTS score.

Who must provide proof of their English proficiency?

Applicants to the graduate schools and divisions of the University of Chicago who do not meet the criteria must submit proof of English language proficiency. This policy applies to all* graduate programs; the score level required for admission varies by program. Only the TOEFL iBT or IELTS Academic tests are accepted as proof of proficiency.

What test scores does UChicago accept as proof of English proficiency?

In order to meet the proof of proficiency requirement, students may submit either the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) internet-based test (iBT), including the standard at-home version or International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Academic  (Note: applicants are required to take the Academic Reading/Writing test within IELTS, not the General Training Reading/Writing test.)

Any other proficiency tests, exams, equivalent coursework, certificate/certifications, endorsement from faculty, and/or other measurement other than the TOEFL or IELTS are not accepted. This includes the IELTS “Indicator” test and the TOEFL ITP Plus.

TOEFL or IELTS score reports are valid for two years and scores will be considered expired if the test was taken more than two years prior to the application deadline. Photocopies or PDFs of TOEFL or IELTS Score Reports will not be considered valid or accepted in lieu of an official score report.

What are the minimum scores required?

The minimum required score for the TOEFL is 102 overall. Minimum required scores in the IELTS are an overall score of seven. (Note: students are required to take the Academic Reading/Writing test within IELTS, not the General Training Reading/Writing test). TOEFL or IELTS score reports are valid for two years and scores will be considered expired if the test was taken more than two years prior to submission of the application. Photocopies of TOEFL or IELTS Score Reports will not be considered valid.

Where do I send my test scores? 

Have TOEFL scores sent to the University of Chicago: 1832

University of Chicago downloads IELTS scores that have been transmitted to our e-download account. Please contact your test center and request that your scores be sent to the following IELTS e-download account:

University of Chicago – Graduate Enrollment
970 East 58th Street, Third Floor
Chicago, IL 60637

The University does not accept paper IELTS test report forms.

I don't have the required TOEFL/IELTS score. Can I retake the TOEFL/IELTS once I arrive in the US?

No. The TOEFL/IELTS is a university requirement, so it is imperative that you retake the test right away.

I have taken the SAT/GRE/GMAT. Do I have to take the TOEFL/IELTS?

Yes, you do. While the SAT/GRE/GMAT are significant indicators of your academic aptitude, they do not specifically address your English language proficiency. So you have to take the TOEFL or IELTS and submit the results along with your other test results. 

I received my secondary education in Germany and earned the highest marks in English throughout. Do I have to take the TOEFL/IELTS?

Yes, you do. Since you do not fall into one of the categories of individuals who would be exempt from taking the TOEFL/IELTS, you must provide a TOEFL/IELTS score.

I studied in Belize for several years. Since the University of Chicago website says that students who studied in an English-speaking country are exempt from the TOEFL/IELTS, does that mean that I do not have to take the TOEFL/IELTS?

Unfortunately no. While the official language of Belize is English, only those students are exempt who have studied in one or more of a specific set of English-speaking countries. Those are the U.S., the United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand and English medium universities in Canada and South Africa. Someone who studied in an English-speaking country other than these must take the TOEFL or IELTS.

I received my education in Singapore in English. Do I have to take the TOEFL/IELTS?

Yes, you do. Students who have studied in English in Singapore are not among those exempt from the TOEFL/IELTS.

I have worked in the U.S. for more than two years. Does that mean that I am exempt from the TOEFL/IELTS requirement?

No, you must take the TOEFL or IELTS. The University's policy stipulates that individuals who have studied in the U.S. for at least one year within the past five years are exempt from having to take the TOEFL/IELTS, but employment does not meet that requirement.

I took the TOEFL over two years ago. Can I still use those TOEFL results?

No, since the TOEFL is only valid for two years after the test date.

I am an international student and require a visa to study. Will the University of Chicago help me?

Yes. The MScA program encourages international students to apply, and will assist with securing an F-1 visa upon admission.

What is the total cost of tuition?

As part of the I-20 process, the Office of International Affairs will conduct a thorough review of financial documentation (e.g. bank statements, letter(s) of support, etc.) to verify that international students have access to the total cost of attendance which includes tuition, student fees, health insurance, books and supplies, and living expenses.

Is the MScA an approved OPT/STEM program? 

Yes. Please visit our Office of International Affairs website for more information.

Is the MScA Online Program eligible for the same OPT/STEM VISA benefits as the in-person program?

No, MScA Online students are not eligible to apply for OPT after completion.

Does the MScA program offer Curricular Practical Training (CPT)?

Yes. Eligible students must be enrolled full-time for one academic year (or three consecutive quarters) to qualify. Students must also be able to present an employment offer letter to complete the application process. Please visit the Office of International Affairs website for more information.

How will I be notified that I am admitted to the MScA program?

Applicants of the MScA program will be notified electronically via email.

If I am admitted to the MScA program, what do I do next?

If offered admission, newly admitted students will be required to provide official transcripts for each college or university as reported on their application. University Registrar may mail physical hardcopies to The University of Chicago Professional Education | Attention: MScA Admissions | 455 N Cityfront Plaza Dr., Suite 950 Chicago, Illinois 60611. Electronic copies (from University Registrar or clearinghouse) may be sent to Analytics admissions team. Details on other post-acceptance activities will be sent shortly after being admitted.

What can I expect after being admitted?

As part of the MScA program, course activities begin prior to the official start of each intake quarter (spring and autumn). Mandatory pre-quarter foundational courses covering introduction to statistical concepts (aka, “stats boot camp”), R workshop, and Advanced Linear Algebra for Machine Learning are held over a four-week period. Example: spring courses officially begin in late March and pre-quarter foundational courses can start by late February; autumn courses officially begin in late September and pre-quarter foundational courses can start by late August.

Does the MScA program accept transfer credit?

Unfortunately, students are not able to transfer in credit. However, students may request to replace a course(s) upon program review and approval through the petition process after being admitted.

If I am admitted to the MScA program, can I defer my acceptance?

An application to the MScA Online program should be submitted for the quarter/year in which you intend to enroll. Deferrals are handled on a case-by-case basis at the discretion of the MSCA administration, and are rarely granted. If granted a deferral, you can only defer once.

What is the difference between a Master of Science in Analytics (MScA) degree and a Data Analytics for Business Professionals Certificate?

MScA is for business professionals who aim to become analytics professionals with advanced data analysis and modeling skills. Graduates of this program are employed for such roles as data scientist, data analyst, business analytics professional, or manager of analytics teams. The Data Analytics for Business Professionals (DABP) certificate program is for business professionals who would like to support their decision making with insights derived from data by using relatively simple data manipulation and analysis tools. That is, DABP sharpens decision making skills of business professionals in their own field; marketing managers with DABP certificate, for instance, make marketing related decisions on the basis of facts derived from data, rather than managerial intuition alone.

I have additional questions and need help. With whom can I speak?

If you would like to schedule a time to speak with someone in the admissions office, you may email Analytics admissions team to request a telephone appointment.

Do students in the MScA online program need to pay the USHIP medical insurance and/or the postgraduate service fee?

No. Student insurance (USHIP) and student service fees are not assessed to students in the MScA Online program.

Can I, an on-campus student, take MScA Online courses? Can I take in-person courses if I am enrolled in MScA Online?

No. Students may only take courses in the program format in which they are enrolled. 

Do I need to be a US citizen or permanent resident to apply to MScA Online?

Students do not have to be US citizen or resident to partake in the MScA online program. The Online program does not award student visas.

How will enrolling in MScA Online change my schedule? Are classes held synchronously, asynchronously, or both?

Classes take place on evenings and weekends in order to allow our students and instructors to maintain their professional schedules. MScA Online is both synchronous and asynchronous. As in our on-campus program, students are required to participate in weekly, live meetings with their instructors and peers, complete readings and coursework, and engage in discussion.

Will enrolling in MScA Online give me the opportunity to network with on-campus students, MScA instructors, and advisors? 

Yes. Events and non-credit courses are open to students studying in both formats, and online career fairs present an opportunity to connect with MSc students from across the Physical Sciences Division. 

How will I meet my fellow MScA Online students, advisors, and instructors?

We have designed this program around connection. From the content of our courses to the platforms we use to deliver them, MScA Online facilitates interaction. In addition to the networking opportunities presented by attending synchronous classes, our instructors hold office hours to make personal connections with our students. Further, our events—held online, in person, and sometimes both at the same time—will help you get to know your classmates and our instructors.

Is there a practical difference in the value of completing my degree online? Can I expect the same career outcomes as my on-campus peers? 

Whether online or in-person, our MScA students routinely interact with companies through Capstone projects, internships, and recruiting events that present career opportunities in the Data Science field, thus creating similar outcomes and objectives for all of our students’ careers.