Machine learning, data science, neural networks, AI are all words that have become part of ‘everyday’ marketing and talk for us. You only need to open the news and see the latest company release that utilises these technologies. This means that it is a great area to increase your knowledge in so you are set to be a part of the world that is almost certainly going to depend on these.
I have been spending my time making this learning adventure. I have previously had small amounts of coding experience mostly on random projects of my own, my degree also utilises a lot of Python however I have not yet spent a long time learning data science.
By spending time on education platforms for data science I hope to be able to show you the best tools for learning this topic or at least give you a vague direction of where you should start.
What is data science?
Data science is the science of handling and extracting value from large data sets. This is useful as it allows us to optimise services, find solutions to problems, etc. Many leading tech companies are plunging billions into data science research.
Or as Oracle defines it: ‘Data science combines multiple fields, including statistics, scientific methods, artificial intelligence (AI), and data analysis, to extract value from data.’
If you are a student, then the best start you can make is to get the GitHub developer pack. It has so many free tools and offers, making it invaluable to anyone who wants to start learning or development. Some of the tools on this list will be included within this pack but it is worth checking the list yourself to see if there is anything that appeals to your desires or requirements.
Educative is an online learning platform tailored towards developers. They have many courses tailored towards machine learning, so if you are interested in learning more in this area this is a great option.
Currently if you have the GitHub student developer pack, it is possible to get 6 months free of educative.io unlimited. With Educative.io unlimited you can get free access to many of what would be ‘paid for’ courses, and also get access to completion certificates which allow you to demonstrate that you did actually complete the course.
Kaggle is a specific platform for data science. If you are looking for reputation then the fact that this platform is owned by Google gives it this since google is know for its prowess in research in AI and data science. However, Google is also known for its reputation of binning of some of its platforms, so the longevity of Kaggle is certainly not definite.
DataCamp is a platform I have been using for a while. A certain amount of daily progress is free but to get the maximum learning opportunity you will have to buy premium. Luckily for you developer pack owners there is 3 months premium available. They have basic courses for each language but also more specific data science courses, for example…
This platform is great for if you are just starting out coding or if you have experience. You can start at different levels from basic to directly starting with the advanced concepts. For each section you complete you can get a completion certificate which you can share to demonstrate your understanding of the area. I choose to display my certificates on my LinkedIn account but you do not need this for it to be useful.
I have posted a Review of DataCamp 2021 covering this platform in more detail.
Tech Goliath Learning
We are thoroughly in the area of big tech companies learning platforms – I know Kaggle is owned by Google but most of it isn’t tailored towards the usage of Google Cloud. At this point I feel like it is worth mentioning that these platforms are designed to teach you how to use the company’s own cloud platform.
There are going to be many useful concepts covered in these courses but they are specifically tailored to persuade you to use the products that they own. It is worth, if time is no object, taking courses from each of these products so you are not stuck with using one platform and you may learn tricks that one course teaches better, and may be able to fill gaps in each course.
I’d advise looking at the first 3 platforms before venturing into the next three.
Microsoft being the tech goliath that it is also has a online learning platform – Azure for Education. Inside their learning hub you can pick courses from many different ‘career paths’ and follow the learning guides for each of these sections depending on what you are interested in. These are: Data Scientist, AI Engineer, Developer, DevOps Engineer, Data Engineer, Security Engineer. The two sections that are important to us are AI Engineer and Data Scientist. Each of these sections has many hours of learning.
AWS Educate is Amazon’s spin on the e-learning, with two cloud career pathways specifically targeted towards topic that are related to this guide. These are ‘Machine Learning Scientist’ and ‘Data Scientist’. These areas have multiple modules, similar to the Azure learning plan. Once again these sections have many hours of learning (they estimate in the course description that there are 30-40 hours of learning in the ‘Data Scientist’ course).
Google also offers an e-learning platform for their cloud platform – Google Cloud Learning. They also have hours of courses. The registration for this course is not as easy as for Azure or AWS since they don’t have a learning platform build specifically for students. To register, you will need to enter your debit/credit card information to demonstrate that you are a real person with no charge unless you upgrade to a paid plan. With this you can get $300 of free Cloud Credit for 90 days to allow you to trial and test their platform but also access to their educational area.