This page contains information for collaborators interested in working with students in Data Science at Olin College.
Do you have data? Do you have questions? Would you like a student team to help?
Starting in January 2014, students in my Data Science class will be looking for external groups to collaborate with. You might be interested in working with us if:
This semester we are particularly interested in projects related to health, biology, and medicine, but we are open to projects in all areas.
What kind of work can the students do?
Students in this class are engineering undergraduates with Python programming skills. They will be learning a practical set of tools they can use to turn data into useful knowledge.
They will work in teams of 2-3 students. Projects that would be a good match for this class might include:
For more specifics, see this Outline of Topics.
If you are interested in working with a student team, here are the steps:
Some frequently asked questions
1) What programming languages will the students use?
I expect most projects to be in Python, but some students know other languages. If your project requires another language or a particular tool set, we should talk.
2) Will the students deliver their code along with the final report?
I will encourage students to make their code public, if appropriate, or at least deliver it to the sponsor, in order to make their results replicable. The details might be different for different projects.
Students in this class are familiar with version control systems like Git and Subversion.
3) How much background do the students have in statistics?
Some of them have taken the Statistics AP, but for most this will be their first college-level statistics class. They will learn basic methods of exploratory data analysis, estimation, regression, and hypothesis testing. We will also cover some machine-learning tools.
If a project requires students to learn additional methods, they can do that. But projects that require advanced statistical analysis might not be appropriate.
The students have programming skills that might allow them to develop novel analyses and visualizations.
4) Is there any cost for collaborating with this class?
There is no cash cost. But you should consider the cost of your time. We will need your help to get the project started and get the students up to speed with the data. Depending on the project, we might need you to provide some domain expertise, or at least pointers to resources. And we hope you will be able to provide guidance and feedback as the project proceeds. Of course, we hope every project yields benefits for you that justify this investment.
A little about Olin
Olin College of Engineering is a new undergraduate college founded with the mission to fix engineering education. We have professors who are passionate about teaching, and students who are engaged and excited about learning.
Our curriculum is hands-on and, like this Data Science class, includes many projects where students engage with real-world problems, working with external collaborators.
Olin is in Needham, MA, about 10 miles from Boston.