£199.99 £139.99 for one year of Unlimited learning. Offer ends on 14 November 2022 at 23:59 (UTC). T&Cs apply

Find out more
Dynamics of data science skills
Skip main navigation

Dynamics of data science skills

The Royal Society recently released a report about Data Science skills and training. In this article, we review the report's findings.
Photo of building
© University of Glasgow

In May 2019, the Royal Society released an report on data science skills in the UK. This article reviews the report’s findings and provides you with pointers to uncover more detail from the report.

There is significant expertise in the UK data science sector, involving academia, industry and government. However, there is urgent need for people with data science skills to join the workforce.

The report argues that data science training should begin with school age learners. There should be broad coverage of data science across the curriculum, spanning maths, science, arts and humanities.

The current challenge for the UK is to reinforce and enhance its national leadership in data science, using education to grow the skills base.

Chapter three of the report is entitled ‘Developing foundational knowledge and skills’. It highlights that everyone should be learning basic data skills at school, which will require extensive support, training and resource development for teachers. The report outlines various mechanisms to achieve this widening access to data science education. These mechanisms include:

  • integrating data skills into the existing curriculum
  • apprenticeships to develop practical data skills
  • outreach programmes for young people

Please check out the Royal Society report for yourself; in particular read pages 47-53 (Chapter 3) and the Executive Summary (pages 6-7). What do you think of the proposed mechanisms for improving data science education? Are they likely to be effective? Have you seen any of them in practice yet?

If you live outside the UK, is data science currently taught in schools in your country? Please share your experience in the comments section.

© University of Glasgow
This article is from the free online

Getting Started with Teaching Data Science in Schools

Created by
FutureLearn - Learning For Life

Our purpose is to transform access to education.

We offer a diverse selection of courses from leading universities and cultural institutions from around the world. These are delivered one step at a time, and are accessible on mobile, tablet and desktop, so you can fit learning around your life.

We believe learning should be an enjoyable, social experience, so our courses offer the opportunity to discuss what you’re learning with others as you go, helping you make fresh discoveries and form new ideas.
You can unlock new opportunities with unlimited access to hundreds of online short courses for a year by subscribing to our Unlimited package. Build your knowledge with top universities and organisations.

Learn more about how FutureLearn is transforming access to education