Top 10 Free Online Data Science Courses

The world is advancing at an unprecedented rate, and you no longer need to travel miles and pay huge sums of money to learn something new. 

Rather, all it takes is a good internet connection and a computer, and a whole lot of commitment.

If you’re also amongst the aspirants looking to break into Data Science without spending a penny and leaving your home, this article is just for you.

I’ll be briefing you about the list of top 10 Free online Data Science courses you can find and benefit from.

  1. Data Science – John Hopkins University
  2. Learning from Data – Caltech
  3. Data Science and Machine Learning Essentials – Microsoft (EdX)
  4. Data Science – Harvard
  5. Introduction to Data Science in Python – University of Michigan
  6. Learn Data Science with R – Ram Reddy
  7. Statistics and Data Science MicroMasters – MIT @EdX
  8. Introduction to Data Science Using Python – Rakesh Gopalakrishnan (Udemy)
  9. I Heart Stats: Learning to Love Statistics – EdX
  10. Data Analysis and Visualization – Georgia Tech (Udacity)

So, let’s start without any further ado.

Top 10 Free Online Data Science Courses

  • Data Science – John Hopkins University

Need a comprehensive overview of Data Science and its practical application? This course has it all. 

It has one of the best ratings on Coursera. It leads in the number of enrollments, and what’s really unique about this because it uses R programming language that isn’t taught very commonly but has a great scope when it comes to doing statistical studies.

However, make sure you have some prior knowledge about Algebra and Calculus before enrolling, as they won’t be covered in it. Other than that, everything will be gone through from a very basic level.


  • Learning from Data – Caltech

If you feel like you have no idea what Data Science is about and how exactly it could be useful to you, look no further. 

This course will provide you with a sound knowledge of what this bandwagon is all about.

You get to learn things like how a machine could learn and how its learning could make a big difference in our everyday lives. It covers the fundamental concepts in a theoretical way, without putting much focus on the coding side.


  • Data Science and Machine Learning Essentials – Microsoft (EdX)

Microsoft’s course on EdX is a great mixture of application and theory if you don’t want to emphasize a single area. 

It helps you walk through the ground-level techniques, including a brief overview of the cloud technologies and the statistical methods used in Data Science.

However, it’s not designed for fresh beginners and needs a basic concept of a programming language such as Python or R to get started. So, I wouldn’t recommend it unless you’re familiar with basic programming concepts.


  • Data Science – Harvard

Coming straight from the coursework of the Data Science degree being followed at Harvard, this is another of those courses which are intended for intermediate students. 

You’re required to have prior knowledge about basic programming languages as well as mathematics and statistics.

However, don’t worry if you don’t have Harvard-level knowledge of these subjects since there are enough free resources to help you out if you’re a newbie. 

All you need is commitment and time. Keep in mind this course doesn’t jump straight to applications and comes with loads of theory as well.


  • Introduction to Data Science in Python – University of Michigan
Free Online Data Science Courses

When it comes to Data Science, nothing beats Python; most Data Scientists prefer using Python for one reason or another. Mainly because it makes coding very straightforward and easy, but the learning curve is also great if you’re a beginner.

 So, if you’re wondering where you should start getting your hands dirty with some actual coding tasks related to Data Science, make sure you go through this on Coursera. This is actually a full course on data science specialization, and you can take the first module of the course.


  • Learn Data Science with R – Ram Reddy

R is the second most preferred language when it comes to Data Science. In fact, if it’s the statistical analysis that you’re focusing on and you’re not as keen on the development of ML models as a whole, R might even surpass Python at times.

Moreover, It has a great community of experts and one such expert is Ram Reddy, the torchbearer of this course. So, if you want to start things off with R, this is definitely the hottest course out there.


  • Statistics and Data Science MicroMasters – MIT @EdX

This is a one-of-a-kind specialization since it includes statistics as well as Data Science. 

If you’re an intuitive person and curious about how everything goes about, learning the core statistical concepts that make the basis of Data Science is very important.

The specialization will take you through a series of steps involved in Data Science and provides a capstone exam in the end as well if you’re willing to pay for it, of course.


  • Introduction to Data Science Using Python – Rakesh Gopalakrishnan (Udemy)

This course follows a much similar approach to the one we previously saw at the 5th spot. It also covers Data Science in depth while following the practical approach of coding using python. 

If you’re determined to play around with Python and test your skills out, there’s no better playground for you to start at.

A great thing about this is that it teaches you some useful libraries like Scikit-learn and to use them in practical projects. So, you actually get hands-on experience, which matters a lot on your resume.


  • I Heart Stats: Learning to Love Statistics – EdX

If you’re a Data Science enthusiast and find yourself extremely good at coding but cannot grasp the concepts involving statistics, don’t forget this one. 

No matter how bad you are at statistics, the material covered in this will make you a master of the art of statistics and probability, even if you’re the most uneasy with it.

No previous knowledge about these subjects is needed, and the instructors guide you from an elementary level.


  • Data Analysis and Visualization – Georgia Tech (Udacity)

For aspiring data analysts as well as business analysts, this course is no less than a gem. 

Being good at the coding part doesn’t necessarily make you good at following trends and using them to your advantage.

This course will become a basis for your analytical skills and let you pick the minor trends where you’re expecting them the least.


Wrapping Up

While getting certifications and affiliations may cost you some money when we talk about online education, many courses let you audit them for free and learn all there is for you. 

In my opinion, learning is what matters, especially in a field such as Data Science, where experience is everything.

So, don’t let your budget become a barrier to your ambitions. 

Go through all the courses listed above, which are entirely free of cost, and make sure you enroll in what suits you the most. Before long, you will find yourself getting a good grip over concepts and applying them in projects as well.

Further Reading

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Emidio Amadebai

As an IT Engineer, who is passionate about learning and sharing. I have worked and learned quite a bit from Data Engineers, Data Analysts, Business Analysts, and Key Decision Makers almost for the past 5 years. Interested in learning more about Data Science and How to leverage it for better decision-making in my business and hopefully help you do the same in yours.

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