Planning to launch your career in Data Science but confused about the best way forward? Taking a professional course is the most commonly adopted way to start the journey of upskilling. But given the plethora of learning options available today it can be a daunting task to compare and choose which kind of program is better suited for you.
Whether you should opt for a 100% online course or a weekend learning program or a full-time classroom one? Your learning requirements, time management skills, budget and objective behind taking the course are some of the factors that will determine the best learning option as per your needs.
In this blog, we are discussing Classroom-training programs or Full-time Data Science programs and why they work better for most learners. So before you plan to invest your time on a purely online course or a weekend classroom/blended Data Science program go through the points below to assess the advantages and disadvantages of each option and evaluate the best choice for yourself.
5. Time Management
Full-time courses help you be the commander of your time. Individuals can make the most of the day by stepping into a fixed routine and learn in the best manner. By making use of full-time study programs, one can dedicate a specific amount of time to the discipline and specialize in the given field.
Most full-time courses based on Data Science, Analytics, Business Intelligence, and Digital Marketing are offered by reputed institutions which follow a classroom schedule. This helps learners pursue the course like a comprehensive curriculum and instills a sense of punctuality and dedication. A regular study schedule along with time for tutorials and practical discussions is also provided which aids the individuals in their learning. Moreover, with the faculty and personnel readily available, learners need not invest time in searching for answers online and getting doubts clarified on online discussions prompt.
Online Courses although offer the flexibility of learning as per your schedule sometimes are left midway due to lack of discipline and commitment required on the learner’s part. It has been noted that the drop-out rates for online courses are the highest when compared to other course formats. This is not just due to the lack of discipline or time adherence but also because most learners lose interest in subject matters that are technical in nature and require extreme focus for long hours.
Weekend Classrooms or Blended formats promise a more relaxed structure wherein students can attend classes over the weekend when they are relatively free. The schedule of these classes though creates a lot of pressure on professionals with hectic work life. Balancing professional responsibilities and personal commitments can be strenuous especially when one has to devote weekends attending a rigorous program. Not only that, most blended courses need you to cover the theory modules and online content to set the context for the upcoming weekend class over the weekdays. Hence leaving no vacant time for any personal commitments.
4. Practical Learning
Full-time courses are offered at various levels such as graduate, undergraduate and post-graduate. These, unlike online courses, offer graded assignments and practice quizzes which are to be implemented on real-life problems. Learners are to analyze and implement the theoretical concepts of real-world problems to generate pragmatics solutions. Full-time institutes providing technical training also create 24X7 AI, Cloud or practical training labs where students can practice the theoretical concepts learned in the classroom without time limit. Case-studies, Capstone projects, Kaggle competitions, Hackathons, etc. become part of the curriculum enhancing technical skills of the professionals and helping them match pace with the industry trends.
For instance, various Data Science and Database Management curriculums offered by Praxis Business School provide learners with the opportunity to work on Data Handling, Analysis, and Predictive Modeling by using business datasets. Learners can collect, clean and augment the user data in order to offer practical fast-paced solutions from a business standpoint. Such an approach aids in comprehensive learning and practical development of the learner.
3. Guided Learning
Learning in a professional setting offers new ideas and techniques. With readily available faculty at one’s disposal, one can make the most of his/her learning by asking relevant questions getting acute insights into the industry and gaining additional knowledge regarding the tips and tricks of the field. Students can often network with the faculty and course alumni and increase their chances of putting a foot in the industry to get a job later.
All this is found absent in online courses and short-term programs. Online courses do not offer 24×7 approachability to the instructor and often students have to help themselves in order to answer questions and solve problems. In the case of short-term courses, the window to network and market your profile is very small. This small durations also leads to limited learning and may often result in gaps in the learner’s skills and competencies.
2. Starting From Prerequisites
A full-time program, unlike an online one, starts from the basics and builds up to advanced concepts. Students can start from the beginning and follow their way up to the topics being practiced in the industry. This helps in comprehensive learning and avoids gaps in the individual’s learning.
For instance, courses such as Data Science and Business Analytics require prerequisites related to Machine Learning, Database Management, and Actionable Analytics. These disciplines are taught in institution-based full-time programs from the starting in order to aid the students with their learning and thus, create a strong foundation for their concepts.
In the case of online courses, a fixed amount of prerequisites are required before one starts off with the course. This might create a hindrance for the user if he/she is not from that field or does not have a background in that specific discipline. Individuals may not be able to follow up to the topics and may have to refer to online discussion prompts or pursue a different course in order to understand the current one.
1. Higher Placement Rates
Full-time programs have had the highest placement rates over the past couple of years. According to market research conducted by Business Insider, a full-time candidate has 19% more chance of getting a good position in her field against a part-time candidate. By connecting with reputed recruiters from all over the world, these courses provide their students with ample working opportunities in the industrial and academic arena.
Many reputed full-time institutions also boast of a Placement Cell which helps students get their first job in highly competitive domains like Data Science, Business Analytics. For instance, the Campus Placement cell at Praxis Business School recently organized a placement drive for their January 2019 batch and successfully placed 65% of their students on Day 0 itself with an average salary of 9 lacs! The well-established network of repeated recruiters helps full-time institutions place their students easily, a process completely missing from online courses.
Most online or blended courses do not guarantee any placement support at the end of the program which leaves students striving to find their first job in the highly competitive job market of their chosen domain.
Various corporations are looking for full-time graduates with specialized expertise in advancing fields such as Data Science, Machine Learning, Deep Learning, Artificial Intelligence, Big Data Analytics, Entrepreneurship Development, and Data Engineering. Full-time programs bridge these gaps between students and the industry by connecting recruiters and HR professionals with students.
Furthermore, various institutes also provide their learners with certification which is recognized and valued in the industry. The certificate indicates the completion of a particular number of courses, completion of the program or specialization in a specific area such as database management or actionable analytics. Students may use these to depict their skills and competencies in order to get a good position in the technical arena.
Full-time courses have gained tremendous popularity among the modern learning community. By providing a comprehensive curriculum in a myriad of disciplines, these courses provide overall learning for students. They help tackle time management by providing a fixed learning routine and offer practical learning for skill development. With 24×7 guided support, these courses aid the students to learn and perform better by providing them with the required prerequisites and advanced techniques. Finally, a strong placement report and recognized certification by the industry is what makes these courses the best learning option for young students and learners.